Jordan Peterson – mind succumbs to matter

Jordan Peterson, the controversial Canadian psychology professor who became a love-hate figure for his anti-political correctness views, condemnation of academic “safe spaces” and his refusal to use transgender preferred pronouns, has a new book coming soon. At one point he was described as an “icon of white supremacy and hate speech.”

   In a publicity interview he described his recent spiral into drug addiction and suicidal thoughts, having become hooked on benzodiazepines prescribed to counter a violent reaction to a cranky diet and anxiety over his wife’s cancer. Along the way he was misdiagnosed as a schizophrenic. He then underwent a Russian treatment that put him into an induced coma for eight days to clear his system of drugs.

  Born 12 June 1962 2.49am Edmonton, Canada, he has a complicated and highly charged chart. He has a 2nd house Gemini Sun and Mercury square Jupiter in Pisces opposition a grandstanding Pluto in the 5th – keen on money, pushily-confident with Jupiter opposition Pluto and highly strung with a focal point Mercury.  Such a Mercury will make him scattered with a fairly disorganised mind.

   He also has a talented Air Grand Trine of Saturn in Aquarius in his 10th trine a Libra Moon trine Mercury so is custom-built as a communicator but it adds to the pressures on his over-active mind which easily gets over-stimulated.

  Plus he has Mars in Taurus in the 12th opposition Neptune square Saturn opposition a ‘leadership’ Leo North Node, which is stubborn to the nth degree, keen on publicity, will tend to attract angry reactions and is quite neurotic.

  His 6th house of health holds both Neptune and his Moon so not messing around with his health will be crucial, which includes weirdo diets. His emotional state will also affect his physical health more than most.

  His Progressed Mars was conjunct his Sun around the time he was in his Russian coma and emerged unable to walk or remember; and at the same time his Progressed Mercury was conjunct his Uranus.

   Tr Neptune will square his Sun this year for a less than energetic phase with certain plans not working out; and tr Pluto is now just into his 10th house, staying for many years, which suggests a long search for a new direction in life. Th is year tr Saturn square tr Uranus will batter his Mars and Neptune as well as Saturn this year along the way of his Second Saturn Return.

  He may have passed his moment.

Pic: Gage Skidmore.

46 thoughts on “Jordan Peterson – mind succumbs to matter

  1. Well it looks like he has come out of health troubles and is back on the podcast trail. I wouldn’t count him out yet.

  2. I’m not familiar with the detail of Peterson’s musings and not motivated to explore since he isn’t that important. But I am interested in social trends and he clearly plugged into concerns in the zeitgeist which is why he became so successful for a time.
    Which seemed to focus on two issues. One popped up more recently with the Eton schoolmaster – which is whether masculinity? I have friends who are mothers of boys and they say they are lost, don’t know who they’re supposed to be anymore. And yeah I know old style masculinity needed to change but not to be obliterated altogether or lost in a fog of confusion.
    The other is the oddity of the trans debate – and I don’t care what the wokery lobby screech – there is something about the unhinged anger unleashed when any dissension is voiced that is highly uncomfortable and suspect. It personally involves a small section of the community, for whom all of us have deep sympathy and respect, but their plight has come to dominate mainstream thinking. It’s proscriptive and dictatorial in a way that is unhealthy and not only in terms of dictating use of language. It also doesn’t take account of the damaging consequences – vulnerable women’s spaces, or children’s right to change their minds etc etc.
    There are things that impact on my sensitivities but I don’t expect the rest of the world to fall in line.
    We’re clearly in a time of transition where change will be resisted by the die hards. But it will also be exploited by those of dubious agenda.

    • Yes, I agree it’s a time of transition. Also, perhaps, a time for history too. Our current view of gender roles, in particular male gender roles, is lacking the long view I feel. Men once expressed love and affection for friends, for instance, much more freely than has been the case in more recent times. Men crying in public was also normal for centuries – see the Greeks for examples, also the Bible, literature of the Middle Ages and on and on. When we supposed, as a society, that “big boys don’t cry” I am not sure, but what a deeply horrible message that is. And when you look at the history of male fashion, you see a great and colourful parade of fabrics, wigs, heels, make-up, corsets, jewellery, sashes, headgear, and flamboyant embroidery from ancient times onwards in numerous societies around the world. Most men today cannot express themselves through clothes in a way that was once the norm. It is now seen as a man’s “feminine” side, rather than the human desire to play around with image and appearance that most of us share.

      We could say that the Industrial Revolution marked a turning point, more or less. I also think that the “sexologists” with their definitions of sexual behaviour and inclinations began a trend that somehow narrowed our views by boxing people in. On the one hand, yes, a much needed freedom to “belong” to a group and demand human rights, but on the other a lack of flexibility and acceptance of that – as can be seen in some broadminded 18th century attitudes towards a variety of sexual explorations.

      We have somehow arrived at a place where an ambitious or assertive woman is seen as “masculine”, while a man who displays tenderness is seen as “feminine”. Surely, neither is helpful or even true?

  3. Not happy with you repeatedly deleting my comment which challenged with fact David W’s completely untrue comment at the top. Not only have you not allowed my comment but you have not removed his which is inaccurate. If you are going to host a public forum for discussion this is not the way to go about it. I , and my partner, who have regularly used your site and directed friends and colleagues here will be logging off.

    • Calm down. I have to sleep – European time – so if comments skip into the needs-moderated box for URLs or for other reasons they have to wait till I get up. Awaiting moderation does not mean deleted. Though I will delete offensive posts.

  4. Petersen has never said that he refuses to use trans preferred pronouns – in fact on the contrary he has said he is happy to use whatever pronoun a person prefers. His issue was with the Canadian government mandating that by law everyone has to use trans preferred pronouns. Of course in the hyper-polarised and ideological debates of recent years this immediately becomes “Petersen refuses to use trans preferred pronouns”. Petersen’s Saturn and Neptune transits look very challenging this year, possibly triggering blows to his reputation.

      • Firstly I am not an apologist for Petersen. He is an interesting voice at times, but I disagree with him on a number of issues. But I stand by my statement. His issue is not with using trans preferred pronouns, it is with being compelled to use trans preferred pronouns – as you say above “he will not be told what he can and can’t say”. My personal bugbear is with the lack of nuance in debate.

    • On LBC radio on the 21/5/18 in an interview with Maajid Nawaz Peterson says “It’s one thing to put limits on what a person can’t say, like in hate speech laws, which I also don’t agree with.

      “But to compel me to use a certain content when I’m formulating my thoughts or my actions under threat of legislative action, I thought no…… It’s never happened in the history of English common law, so I said there’s no way I’m abiding by that.

    • @David W, it was never just about this. He willingly misinterpreted most of the cultural theory he referred to. It was extremely frustrating for people who’d worked 50 years to develope social theories he broadly labeled “cultural Marxist”. There was never a way to discuss with his avid followers, yet alone “the man himself”.

      The issue for him is that while he was in Russia kicking off his addiction, most of his followers have moved to other things. He has been proven wrong by recent events in too many issues. It’s easy for people to see “white privilege” he said doesn’t exist, when it walks into US Capitol and when discovered, walks out of court hearing on bail. Younger people, disproportionally hit by covid-19 crisis related unemployment or underemployment won’t dig his Libertarian (I know he defines himself “Classic British Liberal”, but really he is Libertarian) stance as they did.

      • “He willingly misinterpreted most of the cultural theory he referred to”.

        Yes, indeed. Thanks for that observation. In one lecture Petersen started by saying “Foucault got it all wrong”, without explaining why, without giving any argumentation. For someone who reads French philosophy “dans le texte”, being used to intellectual subtlety and well-developed arguments (as does Foucault), this came as quite a shock.

    • David, on the contrary Peterson definitely will not use what pronouns people prefer – he has made this glaringly obvious and to try and say otherwise, on his behalf, is odd. He knew what factions he was appealing to in terms of his calculated statements – he himself said to Cathy Newman ‘I choose my words very, very carefully’.

      I, myself, am wary about the ‘policing’ of language but we must always consider the impact on those groups of people to who it might matter more, or who have more to lose / are already at a disadvantage. I totally agree with Solaia’s points and with what another poster (Gnarlydude I think) said about Peterson saying controversial things to unconsciously reinforce his outsider status.

      Why people defend Peterson so as if he needed defending is beyond me – I think it must say something about their need for a ‘leader’. Peterson clearly laid out his stall and now the chickens have come home to roost.

  5. His attitude towards the feminine as dangerous, devouring, leading to too much compassion and liberalism is interesting to me because it reminds me of the falling out between Jung and Freud, where Freud is supposed to have damned the “black tide of mud of occultism’. That’s how he views the feminine as something threatening, dark and chaotic because it fits his rather childlike interpretation of the hero myth. He similarly views the modern world through the bleak filter of his own depression and his failure to accommodate change and growth. The fact that he is approaching his second Saturn return with these immature and stubborn, fixed attitudes still in place is worrying.

    • Now that I look at his chart again his house Moon is trine a 10th house Saturn in Aquarius as well as being in a ‘cool’ Air Grand Trine. But more significantly is on the focal point of a Yod inconjunct Mars sextile Jupiter – so it very stressed.
      And that Fixed T Square of his of Mars, Neptune, Saturn is quite weird.
      I’m not averse to some of his views on the feminine/masculine thing – and the academic feminist bunch can be pretty far out there and need someone standing up to them. All part of the pendulum swings as the zeitgeist moves slowly in the right direction after swinging from extreme to extreme.

      • This is the problem, we’ve been going through an age of extremes where the most controversial views on all sides of the debate take centre stage and moderate voices are drowned out. I’m also not averse to challenging some of the more shrill voices demanding submission to their version of ideological purity. But I wouldn’t have a problem with using the pronouns that individuals prefer and I don’t think he’s being kind or reasonable in that respect.

        I feel he is a religious man in many ways. That Jupiter in Pisces can be very ‘churchy’.

        • I heard an interview in which he was asked if he believed in God. His answer was, “I try to act as if I do.” The latter part seemed to imply he had a moral compass to follow the 10 commandments. Wish more people thought that way. Do not think he has ill intentions towards anyone.

          • People will always respond differently. I read that he would quite like his own church where he could give sermons, so that Piscean Jupiter along with the air grand trine fits. The Mars/Jupiter focal point Libra Moon you Marjorie mentioned is tricky. I listened to an interview with him once where he cried in response to the suicide rate among young men, I thought that was interesting – for all his fear of weakness and emotionality he openly expressed that emotion. In some ways he’s fighting something within himself I can’t help feel.

      • My read on it.

        The empty leg of his T-square is Leo. Embracing the heart and emotion. Combine that with the Grand trine in Air including a Libra moon that’s stunted by Saturn; he spends his life trying to be logical and ignore feelings.

        His Cancer Venus is on the IC along with North node in Leo. With Saturn on the SN in the 10th; he’s unable to connect to himself and his roots as he should; he’s comfortable being at work. At best his Venus makes a wide square to Libra moon but is otherwise Venus is unaspected?

        With Saturn in Aqua, he feels an outsider anyway. By making outrageous statements he reinforces that feeling.

        Other posters are saying how much he rejects the feminine but relies on his wife/daughter. As Jung pointed out, that’s what splitting and projection is all about. Getting someone else to pick up the parts of yourself you’ve disowned. Unfortunately this kind of co-dependency is very common in Libra moon.

        Transiting Pluto is opposing that venus on the IC and trying to force him to acknowledge himself.

        • Very interesting and rings true. Fascinating how individuals are turned into icons by a needy public who see the projection, not what lies beneath it. This, I think, is especially apparent in those with unaspected planets.

        • Philosophers are so interesting to study astrologically because often the natal chart gives so much away regarding the astrological dynamics of their thinking. Peterson has often critiqued Fredriech Nietzsche and it’s odd how many astrological patterns in Nietzsche’s natal chart compare with Peterson – you mention the unaspected Venus in weak square to the Moon, GnarlyDude. Nietzsche also has his Venus square Moon, the only aspect to it, plus Nietzsche’s Jupiter is also in Pisces. Similarly Carl Jung, whose ideas play an integral part of Peterson’s thinking has the same yod as Peterson – in Jung’s case Mars in Sagittarius Sextile Jupiter in Libra inconjunct focal point Moon conjunct Pluto in Taurus, he also shares Peterson’s Cancerian Venus and the other noticeable signature that they all have in common is Saturn in Aquarius.

          • Good spot VF.

            Aquarians are very good at being detached. I suspect Saturn in Aqua struggles to ever attach (until it’s old).

            The more I look at Peterson’s chart, the more I believe he wants to deal with everything coolly and rationally. God forbid anything gets too personal !! Personal for him are his theories. And those are constructs, not who he really is.

    • Oddly enough Carl Jung who was supposed to lean towards the feminine in fact treated the women in his life badly. He married Emma, a wealthy industrialist’s daughter for her money, installed his mistress Toni Wolff in the house as his ‘muse’ in a menage a trois. Then he tossed her aside when her looks went. When his wife died she was the one he truly mourned and missed. And was so ‘detached’ from his daughters he barely paid attention to what was happening with them. Though public figures and influencers often don’t walk their talk and are flawed human beings.
      Freud did slant heavily towards the masculine in his theories which wasn’t helpful. His obsession with the Oedipus theory (or his very partial reading of the myth) skewed thinking on sexuality for almost a century afterwards. Behind it all he could never get away from an idealised and unreal view of his mother (Moon Neptune).

      • Oh yes, Marjorie Jung was a flawed man and I would have hated to be married to him. He also had relationships with patients – today he would have been struck off!

  6. I read ’12 Rules’, and thought he had some great points. Who am I? – middle aged female, Devon UK. Cancer treatment, either for yourself or primary partner wrecks the psyche. Give the man a break. There’s cruelty creeping into this space, where intelligence and kindness presided. Thanks Marjorie.

    • From previous post April 1 2018. I never read much except in the media about him but I didn’t find some of his views offensive, au contraire.
      ‘Controversial views on gender and identity politics have shot an obscure Canadian clinical psychologist and academic to fame. Jordan Peterson, known as ‘the cowboy philosopher’, has waded into the linguistic morass around the transgender debate and been challenging the orthodoxies of political correctness and the culture of victimhood he believes is sweeping across university campuses in the West. His book is a best-seller; his You Tube videos have 50 million views and his lectures are sell-out. The New York Times describes him as ‘the most influential public intellectual in the Western world.’
      ‘He has a special interest in the dangers of totalitarian ideologies and believes that academia is in the grip of an accepted worldview that is doing damage. He believes young men are struggling to find themselves faced with accusations of toxic masculinity; that part of the gender pay gap is because women often opt for jobs which are more agreeable and pay less. His musings tie together self-help edicts with wisdom from Carl Jung, Nietzsche and Dostoesvky. And he rails against the University obsessions with ‘white privilege’, ‘safe spaces,’ ‘institutional racism’, diversity, equity, inclusivity. Never mind the alphabet soup of the multifarious choices of gender pronouns. ‘

      • He did a really good thing a few years back called “The Writing Project” where it really helped young people chart out their life from a context of values. I read about that and it really helped me. I think people like to get whipped up in a frenzy of outrage, because it helps with clicks and eyeballs, and selling. His writing project had great points to make, and my plan is to dig into it deeper. He was approaching that as a psychologist, human being, with the point of helping young people find their way and find some sense of clarity.
        …”He co-authored a paper that demonstrates a startling effect: nearly erasing the gender and ethnic minority achievement gap for 700 students over the course of two years with a short written exercise in setting goals.

        “Jordan Peterson teaches in the department of psychology at the University of Toronto. For decades, he has been fascinated by the effects of writing on organizing thoughts and emotions.”

        And this website,

        This is how I knew him, and I found the information extremely helpful, so I have avoided the controversy and stay away from it. People have to get upset about something, and there is always something new to get upset about.

        He who is without Sin cast the first stone.

    • If you look at any philosopher’s work ‘some’ of it is probably interesting. But the glaring irony with Peterson is that he has been quite hardline in his dishing out advice to others, and in trying to deny rights and space to certain groups – his attitudes to gender are completely ridiculous and archaic. Nobody asked him to set himself up as a guru but he has gone with it. The irony is that behind the myth is a broken, fragile man who appears not to be able to help himself.

    • I was open minded about him at first, Suzi. The thing about Peterson’s “12 rules” is that it all looks reasonable on the surface, there’s not much one can disagree with in theory, but when you dig a little deeper into Peterson you begin to encounter something rather more sinister in my opinion.

      • @Virgoflake, agreed. I’m just listening to a podcast quoting academic critique to his writings. They talk about how his work is often based to text that should not be used universally, such as “Big 5” personality theory.

        Also, there’s an interesting article by “Toronto Star” by Bernard Schiff from Toronto University who initially recommended Peterson and was a friend for a long time, but, assisting to a lecture based on a rare critical review of Peterson’s teaching did find he presented conjecture as fact.

        From Schiff’s understanding and respectful account, you can sense Peterson was a brilliant and fun, but always a bit “eccentric” with obsessive traits, such as filling his home with early Soviet memoribilia. Then, some years before his “internets fame”, something started to go wrong, and he became increasingly fixated with issues (Schiff mentions his previous “mental flexibility).

    • Peterson is the high priest of white male fragility. Cultural Marxism is such a nonsensical term, he uses it whenever diverse opinions and culture are introduced. He says political correctness is oppression, because he is expected to respect women and people of other cultures. He is just an old fashioned reactionary. Saturn conjunct South Node square Neptune clings to the delusion of the past being superior. He is devoid of self awareness.

    • Thank you Marjorie. Was wondering about Chiron in JP’s chart as he really seems to embody the wounded healer who can’t help himself.

  7. Gemini in the news again, LOL, after the other mutable, Sagiattarian, Katherine Heigl. I think we should keep a scoreboard at this point as it’s actually quite amusing and interesting at this point. Peterson is also openly misogynistic and quite the figurehead for women-hating, white young men wo are angry at the Me-Too movement, and well just women in general who dare to speak their mind and highlight a crisis. So, kind of fitting in with the zeitgeist happening at the moment; or rather opposing it, yet still there as part of it.

    • Ironic him being mysogynistic that he appears so reliant on his wife and his daughter who sent him into the weirdo diet in the first place and then was with him through the long, tortured cure. Bit like Trump who evidently needed Melania to phone him after speeches to tell him he was great and ditto the ghastly Ivanka. They hate them, they need them.

      • You do tend to find this pattern though, Marjorie. They bitch and moan about women so much and yet they are the most reliant on women. I think deep down they despise their own weakness as they know they need women. God knows what women see in men like this, though. It has to be social and cultural programming because they do not benefit from it whatsoever, unless you take finacial gain. But then that goes out of the window when you consider working class families and prevalence of misogyny.

        Back in my teens I knew a friend of the family who was deeply misogynistic about women. In the end his wife left him and all he constantly did was keep phoning her and badgering her how the bloody household appliances worked because he didn’t have a clue! All that ‘was women’s work, not men’s.’ They really get on my nerves! To be honest, I don’t think I have met a misogynist who didn’t have a partner who was running around doing everything for them. When their partners leave, they fall to pieces becoming even more bitter.

        • Great comment – the internalised hatred about his own weakness definitely seems to apply to Peterson. Fascinating as well how the hordes of Peterson cult members are rushing to defend him after the Times interview, again seem to represent this passive mothering force en mass. Maybe he did the interview knowing this would follow. The irony of him seems to be that for his all ‘tidy your room, grow up and take responsibility’ philosophies he is still just a boy inside himself.

    • Jo – I like your idea of a ‘scoreboard’ – I saw Jordan Peterson was yet another Gemini and was amazed! I suppose there’s also possibly more babies born in the spring/summer months of the northern hemisphere? does this partly account for so many Geminis in the news in recent years? Still, transitional times probably suit the mutable signs, they are agile enough to move fast.

      I see that Peterson’s Sun in Gemini aligns with the fixed star Bellatrix in Orion. This amused me as Bellatrix is ‘the female warrior’. Here’s what Elsbeth Ebertin says about it:

      “If positive properties can be drawn out, will lead to advancement and success, but those who succeed always have to allow for being surrounded with envy and hatred. Quick decision making, thoughts and plans being realized with energy, courage, fighting spirit, strategic talents, ability to organize, discrimination. Reckless aggressiveness of a belligerent daredevil.” [Fixed Stars and Their Interpretation, Elsbeth Ebertin, 1928, p.33.]

      • There are other star signs making the news, but have you noticed the mutable ones tend to fall into the pattern of the ‘privileged toddler having a tantrum,’ because the world doesn’t fit their view so they cause waves and toxicity? They are not in the news for doing good, altruistic things. It usually has to do with them over-extending their privileges or feeling threatened because the world is changing and they fear it all being taken away.

        • Yes Jo, I listen sometimes to the podcast, ‘Behind the Bastards’ and they do dissect Peterson in an episode in a way which renders him comical. His paleo diet, encouraged by his daughter who also sounds a little ‘away with the fairies’ is one example of his innate foolishness and lack of common sense. The overall feeling I get with Peterson is that he’s a small, over-indulged boy, who never grew up (I see this in my generation sadly – we all have Uranus at the end of Leo/ cusp of Virgo and there is a tendency for arrogance and entitlement, Uranus is in its opposite sign in Leo don’t forget). Plus, like Trump he has a Cancerian Venus which in men of a certain age ime can manifest as a tiresomely traditional view of women. His Saturn in Aquarius, conjunct the South Node is another reflection of his stubborn refusal to embrace change. I find him exasperating and couldn’t put up with his prissy, picky nature for any length of time. I assume his wife was quite relieved when he went into that coma.

          • ” small, over-indulged boy, who never grew up”

            Archetypally you’ve just described Gemini. Male or female – they don’t grow up.

          • That made me laugh, virgoflake. I’m picturing him in a coma and her enjoying a luxurious bubble bath, drinking a much-needed glass of wine, and listening to Ella Fitzgerald. “God, I’ve missed this,” she sighs before knocking back the Prosecco. Then cut to Peterson lying on his hospital bed in a coma, nurses and doctors walking around in slow-moin the background, and cue Ronan Keating’s warbling, “You say it best when you say nothing at all.” Talk about black humour. I imagine its the sort of sketch Ricky Gervais would do!

      • Thanks for that Ebertin connection, Jane. Judging from many of the comments here, “surrounded by envy and hatred” rings true.

        Consider having a look at the NPR link mentioned elsewhere, “The writing assignment that changes lives”.

        “Peterson believes that formal goal-setting can especially help minority students overcome what’s often called “stereotype threat,” or, in other words, to reject the damaging belief that generalizations about ethnic-group academic performance will apply to them personally.”

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