This Thursday night, my wife and I will be going with two others to see and hear Jordan Peterson in San Francisco. It is an event sponsored by the Independent Institute. In preparation and anticipation of that event, I have been reading Peterson's 12 Rules For Life: An Antidote to Chaos. I've brought up Peterson's name to various ones in recent days, and some will say something like, 'oh yes, I really like Peterson,' even though they don't like rules. Peterson's book is 12 rules. Rules. Some of the same ones would say 'no on rules'.
I've heard or watched Peterson in podcasts, interviews, and videos, and I have a pretty good handle on a lot of what he thinks, and I'm saying the following quote comes from a pivotal part of his thinking within his book. In that very important part of his book, Peterson writes this paragraph about a father and a son in their relationship. I'm typing this whole paragraph verbatim (p. 192):
If a father disciplines his son properly, he obviously interferes with his freedom, particularly in the here-and-now. He puts limits on the voluntary expression of his son's Being* (look below for Peterson's definition of "Being"), forcing him to take his place as a socialized member of the world. Such a father requires that all that childish potential be funneled down a single pathway (italics mine, not Peterson's). In placing such limitations on his son, he might be considered a destructive force, acting as he does to replace the miraculous plurality of childhood with a single narrow actuality. But if the father does not take such action, he merely lets his son remain Peter Pan, the eternal Boy, King of the Lost Boys, Ruler of the non-existent Neverland. That is not a morally acceptable alternative.*From earlier footnote from Peterson: "I use the term Being (with a capital "B") in part because of my exposure to the ideas of the 20th century German philosopher Martin Heidegger. Heidegger tried to distinguish between reality, as conceived objectively, and the totality of human experience (which is his "Being"). Being (with a capital "B") is what each of us experiences, subjectively, personally and individually, as well as what we each experience jointly with others."