“The worst snake of all is malevolence” Jordan Peterson on the snake within

“The worst snake of all is malevolence” Jordan Peterson on the snake within

that’s partly the archetypal underpinning and then with regards to the stories themselves you’re you’re in a map so to speak you’re using a map and with any luck its detailed enough so that you can use it to get to the place that you want to go and sometimes you don’t and that means that you have to recalibrate your your journey along the map which by the way is exactly what GPS systems do when you go off the pathway right they stop that’s an anxiety response from the GPS system they stop they recalibrate and they readjust the map now and then if you’re unfortunate this very rarely happens anymore you’ll be on a road that isn’t mapped and then the GPS system doesn’t know what to do well that happens in real life too I mean those are I’m using GPS for a very specific reason those are intelligent systems as far as I’m concerned those are the closest things we’ve ever designed to intelligent systems because they can actually orient right they orient in real time and they’re unbelievably sophisticated systems right because they rely on a huge satellite network and and so on and they’re cybernetic systems technically speaking they respond very much like the way that we respond so so anyways you know you’re in you inhabit a map you try to adjust the resolution of the map so that it’s munot more complex than it needs to be to get you from point A to point B that’s it you want minimal resolution because that enables efficient cognitive processing it doesn’t overload you too much like when I’m looking at this room if I look say I want to walk down this pathway basically what my mind does my perceptual field and you can detect this if I look straight ahead I can barely see you people on the periphery you’re more like you’re kind of like blurs you too I can tell that you have heads but that’s about it when you move I can see your hand I can probably see your eyes but barely so you’re all very low resolution and even though I can’t detect it at the very periphery of my vision you guys are black and white so my color vision disappears at the periphery even though I can’t I can’t actually perceive that so what happens is if I want to walk down here this pathway becomes high-resolution it becomes marked with positive emotion all of this turns into low resolution back here it’s not even represented and then I find out well am I doing this properly and the answer is well I walk forward and if I get to the goal then I’ve done it properly enough and if you know one of you stand up and get in my way then I’m gonna focus on you and assume instantly that I haven’t mapped you properly right I put you in the category of irrelevant entity when in fact you happen to be in the category of strange object the thing that objects and so well so then we inhabit those structures all the time we’re in a structure like that a perceptual structure and if it’s working then it’s got the archetypal quality of paradise so to speak because it’s axioms are correct and it’s functional and then now and then something comes along and that’s what the snake is the eternal snake in the garden that pops up inside a structure and it turns out that the things that you weren’t attending to are the most important things rather than the least important things and that what does that do it blows the map into pieces and that can happen at different levels of severity but at the ultimate level of severity its apocalyptic right everything goes and that’s a that’s a traumatic intrusion and essentially the story of the Garden of Eden is the story of a traumatic intrusion that’s exactly what it is and so what happens is that Adam and Eve are living in unconscious bles roughly speaking everything’s fine they’re in their walled garden they’re in a paradisal state they’re not aware of their own vulnerability or nakedness so they they’re not suffering from negative emotion something pops up that radically expands their vision and all of a sudden now they can apprehend all sorts of things that exist as threats so that’s their own nakedness and vulnerability and temporality itself because they become aware of the future and bang that state of being in that paradise is forever gone that’s the strange thing about human beings is this is what what happened to us I think is that our perceptions developed to such a degree that we could no longer ignore what was irrelevant we couldn’t do it because we discovered roughly speaking once we discovered our finite limitations in time and space we discovered that we surrounded by infinite threat always and maybe that’s why people are so hyper awake because threat wakes you up well we’re in a constant state of existential threat now the advantage to that is that we take we take arms up against a sea of troubles constantly that’s the advantage right and we build enclosures and we take precautions for the future and we live a very long time and we generally live quite safe lives compared to the lives we could live and so we’ve traded pain for anxiety that’s another way of thinking about it now it’s still a pretty rough trade right because who wants to be nervous all the time but you’re alive and awake when you’re nervous and it is a form of consciousness elevating activation that’s another way of thinking about it so the story of Adam and Eve is the story of the eternal fall that that’s what it is it says look you exist in these walled enclosures but there’s something that lurks that will always knock you off your feet and then the question is what is that and and the answer to that is being formulated over very long periods of time partly it’s the probability of predation itself that’s the snake the thing that can come in subtly and undermine you okay but then that’s that’s what would you call it expand it upward to include the abstract snake which is that thing that can undermine your conceptual schemes right so you have your actual territory and then you have your abstract to our territory and in your actual territory there are actual snakes and in your abstract territory there are abstract snakes right and then the worst snake of all is malevolence and that’s I think that’s technically correct because one of the things that you view for example when you’re looking at post-traumatic stress disorder is that it’s almost always the case that someone who suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder which you might think of as a real real-life reincarnation of the fall is that people encounter something malevolent and it breaks them because it’s the worst thing to understand it’s like suffering is one thing man that’s that’s bad enough vulnerability and suffering that’s bad enough but to encounter someone who will is that upon you and we’ll work to bring it about that’s a whole different category of horrible especially what it also reflects something back to you about yourself because if someone else can do that to you and they’re human that means that you partake of the same essence strangely enough that’s actually the cure to some degree to post-traumatic stress disorder is it like if you’ve been victimized you’re naive and you’ve been victimized the way out of that is to no longer be naive and to no longer be victimized and that means that you you see this reflected in the Harry Potter idea for example that the reason that Harry Potter can withstand Voldemort is because he’s got a piece of him but he’s been touched by it and the way that you the way that you keep the psychopaths at bay is to develop the inner psychopath so that you know one when you see one right and then but that’s a voluntary thing it’s it’s so it’s like a it’s like a set of tools that you have at your disposal which is full knowledge of evil and that does Nietzsche said if you look into an abyss for too long you risk having the abyss gaze back into you right the idea is that if you look at something monstrous you have a tendency to turn into a monster and people are often very afraid of looking at monstrous things exactly for that reason and then the question is well should you turn into a monster and the answer to that is yes you should but you should do it voluntarily and not accidentally and you should do it with the good in mind rather than falling prey to it by possession essentially because that’s the alternative how does it possess you that’s easy your suffering makes you better your bitterness makes you resentful you’re resentful means me it makes you vengeful and once you’re on that road you go down that a little bit farther man well you end up it fantasizing in your basement about shooting up the local high school and then killing yourself right because that’s sort of the ultimate end of that line of pathological reasoning being should be eradicated because of its intrinsic evil and I’m exactly the person to do it and I’ll cap it off with an indication of my own lack of worth just to hammer the point home right and if I can garner a little post post posthumous Fame along the way well that’ll satisfy my primordial primate dominance hierarchy Jennings – at least in fantasy so you know it’s the full package if you want to go down that route and of course people don’t like to think about that sort of thing and it’s no bloody wonder but without the capability for mayhem Europe you’re you’re a you’re a potential victim – may have so you need your sword it should be sheath but you need to have it and it’s very frequently the case if you treat someone with post-traumatic stress disorder there’s two things you have to do you have to help them develop a very articulated philosophy of evil because otherwise their brain bothers them over and over and over what why were you so mean with naive how did you become victimized why were you such a sucker these are good questions you don’t want to have that happen to you again you don’t want to be exploited twice okay so your eyes have to open up we know the price of that from them Egyptian myth right you come into contact with Seth what happens even if you’re a god you lose an eye it’s no joke man it’s no joke and then the cure for that is the movement down into the underworld and with the revitalization of the Father that’s the identification with the force that created culture right and that then there’s you and that together then you can withstand malevolence maybe you can withstand tragedy and malevolence and then that’s the whole secret right because that’s what you want in life you need to be able to withstand tragedy and you need to be able to withstand malevolence because those are the forces they’re always working against you and so it’s just this is associated with the Union idea of incorporation of the shadow right you have to be we know this God we know how predators work with regards to children even if you’re a pedophilic predator and you’re looking at a landscape of children the child that you’re going to go after is the one that’s timid and won’t fight back you’ve picked your victim and predatory people in general or exactly like that man they’re because they’re predators they’re not going to attack someone who’s who’s gonna fight back in fact the issue is likely not to even come up they’re going to be looking for someone one way or another that cannot conceptualize what they are and then perfect it’s a it’s an open season and it’s open season and so if you’re treating someone with post-traumatic stress disorder first they need an intraday to the philosophy of malevolence and second they have to learn to become dangerous because that’s the only way out what’s the alternative to get these recurrent thoughts about their vulnerability in the face of malevolence and their own naivety because by definition if someone’s psychopathic has exploited you you’re too naive it’s a definitional issue you can say well that’s no fault of mine how the hell could I be prepared fair enough man a perfectly reasonable objection doesn’t solve your problem because it’s an it’s an eternal problem right the internal problem is how do you deal with tragedy and malevolence and you can say well I’m not prepared it’s like yeah fair enough unsurprising especially if you were over protected as a child it’s not a good idea to overprotect your kids because the snakes are going to come into the garden no matter what you do and so then you instead of trying to keep the damn snakes away what you do is you arm your child with something that can help them chop them into pieces and make the world out of them so that the trick for human thriving in the face of suffering and malevolence is strength not protection it’s a completely different idea you

Randy Schultz

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100 thoughts on ““The worst snake of all is malevolence” Jordan Peterson on the snake within

  1. PicardRiker08 says:

    I KNEW Peterson was the Armored Titan.

  2. Sirena Mermaid says:


  3. TheSkepticalIdealist says:

    "you people"? What do you mean "you people"?
    "you guys are black and white"

  4. Todor Tashev says:

    5:42 "Where did I write it?" – Peterson thinking to himself

  5. gooblegraysha says:

    What if you’re afraid of becoming a monster

  6. Zakaria Znini says:

    Don't change the thumbnail image you just make yourself look bad

  7. orazdow says:

    All this about predatory behavior and malevolence is really spot on. It basically describes everything I learned over the years living in a city with ultra malignant white women.

  8. Kai says:

    this resonates with me. he describes my exploitation and my recovery over the past two years to the point where I also learned to wield a weapon at will. still learning, tho.

  9. Brad Mowreader says:

    I been working on my inner psychopath and getting to know the monster. Thanks dad.

  10. Anita Lendore says:

    This man is a genius

  11. Yorkshire says:

    Jordan "archetypal" Peterson

  12. Hakan Karaağaç says:

    so treatment is exposure to evil, to see it, and not safe spaces from it.

  13. Twist3dFend3r says:

    It's like Peter Baelish in Game of Thrones before he dies in season 7.. "don't fight in the North or the south.. fight every battle, everywhere, always, in your mind.. everyone is your enemy, everyone is your friend. Every possible series of events IS happening, all at once. Live that way and nothing will surprise you. Everything will be something that you've seen before.."

  14. Alok Hota says:

    Pretty sure I saw the Armored Titan somewhere

  15. Keenan Eriksson says:

    Great thumbnail. Two of my favorite things.

  16. Alison Thomson says:

    Evil is as evil does.

  17. Eduardo Kopik says:

    "suffering leads to bitterness
    bitterness leads to resentfulness
    resentfulness leads to vengeance
    vengeance leads to the dark side"
    – J Peterson

  18. aj12271 says:

    This man is not afraid to speak truth. And truth is eternal as is the spirit that dwells inside each of us. The spirit recognizes and accepts truth if wise. Otherwise, it rejects it and that man is a fool. Jordan Peterson connects to so many because he speaks truth.

  19. Charles Rump says:

    Attack On Titan is full of archetypes. It would be interesting to see JP break them apart.

  20. aussie vetnurse pro says:

    For almost 2 decades I've sought help in dealing with and understanding my past, understanding and mending my mental and emotional states since, and not once have I been awakened to such insight until now, aged 41, thousands of dollars in various therapies later, a tool is gifted me via YouTube in less than 15 minutes. Becoming aware of my own capacity for evil doings and evil thoughts have never before been so well articulated nor has the notion been described as something I need in order to survive until now. What a relief. JBP is a gift.

  21. Acewing Dabson says:

    The Armoured Titan; Its no joke man!

  22. Zina Altai says:

    this.guy feels like you're having a.philosophical conversation with your weed buddy..its mind candy

  23. Zina Altai says:

    ever been brainwashed by a psychopath? Its ok there's always.a way to overcome it..the answer is malevolence?ya baby im feeling dangerous!

  24. alexander essen says:

    'we trade pain for anxiety'

  25. Natalie says:


  26. jonah west says:

    Giving you thumbs down for that horrificly loud music at the end.

  27. Michele says:

    I wish I found him years ago. I'm broken and cant be fixed

  28. CHERY Mac Gréco Péralte says:

    I can't believe this man exists

  29. n n says:

    The art of talking for 20 minutes and not saying anything. What a blowhard.

  30. Bianca von Mühlendorf says:


  31. Analog Signal says:

    So, essentially what happened to Tetsuo

  32. Sonali Gurpur says:

    Threat from those you ought to be able to trust, that's what I want addressed. Predation is ignored too long by those who are completely capable of putting an end to it. Don't sit back and watch the drama. That's irresponsible.

  33. Clovis da Cruz says:

    We’ve traded pain for anxiety

  34. Derek Skorski says:

    Real one

  35. TORE M. SCHANKE says:

    I think the garden is a metaphor of a labour camp!
    It was being slaves, that woke us up…
    The 'El' speaking, is the first slave-keeper.

  36. Kshitij Maurya says:

    Does anyone have any recommendations on literature about the philosophy of malevolence?

  37. Robert Blain says:

    All who support murder of the unborn are malevolent.

  38. TimberwolfDan says:

    I bet he's never had a student fall asleep in class.

  39. TimberwolfDan says:

    Thanks for the useless clickbait lie. Was hoping he was gonna use an aot analogy or something.

  40. Gulam Ahmed says:

    what if you were born surrounding snakes?

  41. Gulam Ahmed says:

    what if you were born as a snake?

  42. Jason Smith says:

    Look too long into the Abyss and you fall in; the Abyss possesses you. That is what Peterson should say. Read the Qu'ran too long and its Evil possesses you…

  43. TheModer8ter says:

    John 6:47 "verily, verily I say unto you, he that believes in me has everlasting life."-Jesus.  Jesus the Messiah died for the remission of sin, including yours, was buried, and rose form the dead 3 days later, Simply believe in this and you have everlasting life.

  44. elsa helgason says:

    This is carryover from the past badly history’s to now. We had to make the futures better will recovery of the badly past happened. Forgiveness the past mistakes. To made the worlds more beautiful and peaceful in the futures. We all can enjoying the happiness and celebrations.

  45. elsa helgason says:

    When the minute just past by, the new day’s is on the ways for us, the next pages of the historical will rewrite turns the succeed victory of the greatest humanity worlds. The universe and cosmic will blessing of the beautiful and amazing humanity worlds of the peoples. ?❤️?❤️?❤️?❤️?❤️?❤️?❤️

  46. Lance Bermudez says:

    There’s a bit of Yoda in there: Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.

  47. CurbsideUnderwood says:

    I just hope I can overcome my inner demon, for his strength is that of a thousand Titans, and at times I love the feeling of pure darkness for it has no fear and is unbelievably focused, however it is not the man I wish to be, I desire to walk in the light, I really do, but the dark has such a sweet flavor, a brutally inhuman youth forged a viciously harsh soul, but also one that truly appreciates the authenticity of the genuine light and good in this world for it knows what it's polar opposite truly looks like. Thank God for Jordan Peterson, his words give me a map I can actually use to find my path against the backdrop of torrential chaos. Have a great day.

  48. wujidao says:

    Malevolence isn't the worst snake, it's symptomatic of "full knowledge" or ideology.

  49. Dragon Dud says:

    who else thought Jordan was a attack on titan fan for a sec

  50. Bob Smithies says:

    Jesus never said `fight evil with evil`.

  51. M Jinete says:

    Holy cow peterson your speeches work like the progressive metal of a psychology class

  52. Gary S says:

    Jordan is full of poop–he admits his sub-human intelligence as compared to the intellectual Jew–the worst snake–or as he says–the eternal snake is the "Holy Serpent of the Jews" , by Texe Marrs. Get of your needs Jordan–you're making us look bad.

  53. Yo Yoyo says:

    this speaks to me so much..the problem of growing up while being abused is that as an adult you know how to abuse someone too well. You learn to see it in other people but then you see it in yourself too. It was suffering when I was growing up, but now it's malevolence.

  54. jesse merrill says:

    FREAKING WOW…. clicked… and now I know why I’m soo loud! Never again…. Thank you and God bless

  55. Troy Parfitt says:

    Peterson is a Nazi, an occultist, and a plagiarist.

  56. M.E. Ultra says:

    I only clicked this video because I saw AoT so if this has nothing to do with the series I’ll be pissed.

  57. Night Walker11B says:

    At 6:15 when JBP starts talking about PTSD which I fortunately do not suffer from after deploying to Iraq in the early 2000's… but a few of my brothers unfortunately are dealing with really opened my eyes to what they are dealing with.

  58. Jake Covill says:

    Damn is he spot on.

  59. Maryj says:

    This is correct.

  60. BW says:

    One time, I was trying to convince a family member who was terrible with directions that google maps could take them anywhere, never before and never since, but only in that instance; were led on an unending loop. :-/

  61. Oozy9Millimeetah says:

    This certainly speaks to me!! I went from beaten and bullied kid that wanted good for everyone to a very dark person who took Tony Soprano as his role model just to deal with everyday life. It certainly worked and molded me into a person who simply can not be victimized anymore, but now i can't turn the monster off. Not that I'm now oppressor of others but the hate and attraction to conflict is very deep in me and can't get rid of it..

  62. LJC MLS says:

    Thats what liars do..they want to lie over and over to crush anything, because they have little of any kind of soul.. lack love.

  63. shabop shabop says:

    wow, i had an unexpected emotional reaction to petersons explaination of post traumatic stress. he's very intelligent. he puts it so succinctly.

  64. Eliza Corder says:

    I thought the title said male violence. facepalm

  65. - Jimu の Nightcore - says:

    Attack on titan – LMFAO
    two loves in one

  66. Aden says:

    I thougt he were going to analyzing Attack on titan

  67. Derrick Arrowsmith says:

    Dude I've never heard anyone ever come close to explaining what I experienced until JP right now in this video!!! Amazing!

  68. Office Marion says:

    Its therapeutic to listen to Jordans lectures and learn at the same time.

  69. Keviv Tawar says:

    AOT thumbnail is sick bro ??

  70. Keviv Tawar says:

    4:00 "and Bangg!!!" . JBP's oratory skills are next level . One can just listen to him talking for hours 🙂

  71. James Kozubek says:

    Step one: develop inner psychopath

  72. Saved Life says:

    When you're an infantryman, you quickly realize all of the other jobs in the (Army) are working for you, because you're the 1%. However, all of those other jobs fill roles that support the entire infrastructure.

  73. betty boop says:

    If i had been allowed to listen to only one talk by Peterson, this is the one. How fortunate his enrolled students are.

  74. Expansive Vibrations says:

    The trick for human thriving is strength NOT protection! So perfectly put, thanks professor, life altering advice and wisdom!!! ??

  75. Syndicate isReal says:

    "Our perceptions developed to such a degree that we could no longer ignore what was irrelevant."

  76. Man Manman says:

    6:27 So absolutely true!

  77. Jason McCredden says:


  78. coyote says:

    I went to a community college and I never had the experience of a teacher having so much to offer. Now that this kind of quality of education can be seen by anyone with a computer, I wonder what the reaction is of other teachers who must be well aware they offer nothing of comparable value. It's also interesting how his genuine sense of humility actually facilitates comprehension of what he's articulating. I can't help but resent the hours I spent in class with smug worthless teachers who graded you based on how stupid you were willing to pretend they weren't.

  79. Zach Sadberry says:


  80. U S A says:

    That's why we have to forgive, so we don't become vengeful

  81. Enayat Choudhury says:

    'If we're going to defeat the tripods we need to BeCoMe tripods!'

  82. Ethan Gauthier says:

    I'm pretty sure he's the one punch man. And hasn't even used serious punch yet.

  83. Chris P says:

    Not being prepared for psychopaths is how I wound up so motivated to go to Iraq. I could not conceive of the obvious lies that got me there.

  84. Captain Nemo says:

    Damn can you just press charges. And let the legal system do its work. Or ignore it.

  85. Hands Solo says:

    All week I tried to think of ways I can help others and an amazing thing happened –
    I got to wake up each morning.
    Be grateful,
    Die graceful.

  86. Kieron Blagden says:

    I never knew such a man as him, that I wish to emulate. What a guy; father to the fatherless. God bless him and his family

  87. alys Freeman says:

    How does this theory work with cptsd? It makes sense but as a child I was naive by birth.

  88. Theresa Lane says:

    So true I believe I've been 3 in a row and now I play with them. For practice.

  89. Theresa Lane says:

    Gordan Peterson I swear we have similar perspectives. Its amazing and strange.

  90. Theresa Lane says:

    I've been beaten up and I'm still fighting for my life and my son.

  91. Theresa Lane says:

    Yes dont let your kids wear those rose colored glasses. 46 I woke up and for many years I absolutely loved them until they become my ghosts. And my ghost becomes my lessons and I'm Master them.

  92. doug ridgway says:

    Is it just me? Does one sentence from this man involve layers of wisdom.

  93. Teresa Harris says:

    But how do I become dangerous? How do I become less agreeable, without becoming defensive and resentful?

  94. john pepin says:

    What if it wasn't an apple…but a mushroom?

  95. Chasity A. says:

    This is pure, solid gold.

  96. Harry Mills says:

    I used to literally see the abyss during my early childhood night-terrors phase, and what made it terrifying, truly, was that by looking, suddenly it noticed ME, and wished me harm. So that Nietzsche quote, when I came across it, spoke to me LITERALLY, as well as figuratively. And boy do you want to believe they won't see you if you just shut your eyes, get under your blankets and lie absolutely still.

    I don't know if there's as much "seeing the psychopath in you" to it as just perceiving that there is an intelligence that wishes you harm. It's the realization or the SPECULATION that there are malevolent forces/people/evil_spirits out to get you. I don't think it's necessary to see the psychopath in yourself to assume somebody means you harm and extrapolate from what might harm you to what you want to defend yourself against their trying to do. But I think it makes for good drama from writers who aren't as deep as they think they are. (I think all screenwriters need to stop their bonus features, where they talk through the whole movie, explaining their thoughts. For guys like me, it were better not to know, on account of what a disappointment it turns out to be. They're not the deepest writers in the world, and then they compound it by pre-determining the visual spectacle and contorting the plot to enable it. But enough about me..).

    Because I experienced night terrors, I think that the idea of Jesus as Lord and Savior as bulwark against the supernatural (imagined?) forces out to get you and these terrors for ME came right along about the time I fully comprehended that Grandma and Grandpa were old, Mom and Dad were in-between, but EVERYbody dies. In other words, something to tell children so that they're not overwhelmed by a big world full of malevolence and, ultimately, DEATH. Jesus not only handles your demons for you, but He promises everlasting life in Heaven. You just have to believe enough and it is true. (Without Jesus, other things, like political ideologies are accepted and defended by faith, to give people meaning or at least a sense that they matter in an uncaring universe).

    So I spent a LOT of time trying my hardest to believe hard enough, but I could hear those demons laughing in my mind's ear that I still had doubts. I knew I wasn't strong enough. Still, falling asleep with Jesus in my mind's eye was some bit easier than otherwise, and I know it spared my folks a lot of crying from their then-youngest! LOL! It serves many positive purposes, irrational though such fairy tales are.

    I think this initial bout with existential angst took place after I shattered my elbow at 4 years of age. It brought the harshness of the world into very sharp focus. I think it made me more introspective later in childhood. Extremely self-reflective. One of those guys who couldn't get a date, because he couldn't help analyzing everything to the nth degree, and VOCALIZING that (unsolicited) analysis.

  97. Teaire Shepherd says:

    I'm the boss of it all I found so who wants to play

  98. D.A Villa says:

    He is like the social science version of Yoda ?

  99. Alexander Kennedy says:


  100. D1g1tal b4th says:

    He needs to calm down

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