The ethic is called forth.

On Hierarchy and the Reduction of Complexity in the World

“The world is, for all intents and purposes, infinitely complex. Even if there isn’t a truly infinite number of things, phenomena and facts, there is a sufficient infinity of combinations of things, categories of things, potential and real. This complexity has to be reduced to a level that is manageable at the level of moment-to-moment perception (we can only attend to one thing) and action (we can only undertake one action). That is accomplished through the cooperation and competition that is part of the general social hierarchy, which specifies through collectively-established value and through language itself what is to take priority and why.

“The hierarchy says: ‘Here’s what’s valued. Look at that (perceive that) and not something else. Pursue that (act toward those ends) and not something else.’ What the hierarchy truly specifies, therefore, is not the value of things, but the value of behaviors or perceptions that create, maintain or distribute valued things. That’s an ethic. The ethic called forth is a set of principles for acting in the world of value.”

-Jordan Peterson

7 thoughts on “The ethic is called forth.

    1. It was part of his weekly newsletter, “Mondays of Meaning,” that came out in August. I think I signed up for it on . It was not an excerpt from a larger piece of writing. These newsletters contain small aphorisms, musings, video links, etc. Like this: “It took untold generations to get you where you are. A little gratitude might be in order.”

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Jordan Peterson is so smart. I don’t pretend to understand everything he says, lol, but I think he’s a decent man searching for God and not embarrassed to be vulnerable. I like him. 🙂


  2. Like Lisa just commented, I don’t understand everything Jordan Peterson says but he makes a lot of sense and I watch his YouTube talks often.


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