The phenomenal success of Jordan Peterson has created hugely polarised reactions, most clearly on the left, or progressive side of the political divide. Matthew Tarnas Segall is a lecturer at the California Institute of Integral Studies, a highly progressive and spiritually influenced college in San Francisco, and Jesse Estrin is a depth psychotherapist, a graduate of CIIS and has worked on causes for social justice for many years. In this four-way discussion with Rebel Wisdom's David Fuller and Alexander Beiner, both are keen to examine the question of what the left can learn from Jordan Peterson, and to ask why much of 'their tribe' has such a strong reaction to his thought.
“There's this polarization happening,"says Segall. "Everyone on the right thinks everyone on the left is a Stalinist and everyone on the left thinks everyone on the right is a Nazi.
"People like Peterson are trying to carve out... not a non-political, but a kind of position that's lateral to politics that's more in the psychological domain, to ask people to look at themselves as individuals, to question the extent to which they're projecting their shadow onto The Other.
"Until we can resolve issues on that level it's going to be difficult to resolve these political disagreements. That's one of the main reasons I've found myself so interested in what Peterson is saying: he's shifting the level of the conversation. Or trying to, at least.”