“Who is your spirit person?”

I was asked this question a few weeks back and thought it was beautiful.

Mine is an amalgam of three people

Psychology – Jordan Peterson

Philosophy – Alan Watts

Creativity – Steve Jobs

I chose three real people with their own unique strength but also character flaws and weaknesses.  These three minds and their unique ideas helped shape who I am today as a human being.   They have all had a profound impact on the way I approach life and the way I view and operate within the world.   While there are many great minds, ideas and philosophies, for this round I chose three people from the last 50 years of history.  

It would be an amazing exercise, (one I don’t have time for) to go back century by century and pick 3 of the most transformative minds and create breakouts for each.

Carl Jung, famous depth psychologist is quoted for saying, “People don’t have idea’s, idea’s have people” and I would say that these three gentlemen tapped into that collective “cloud” and have repackaged those universal truths through their own unique lens.  It’s a beautiful thing to catch when you see it.  

Who is your spirit person?

 

Alan Watts

Alan Watts

A prolific author and speaker, Alan Watts was one of the first to interpret Eastern wisdom for a Western audience. Born outside London in 1915, he discovered the nearby Buddhist Lodge at a young age. After moving to the United States in 1938, Alan became an Episcopal priest for a time, and then relocated to Millbrook, New York, where he wrote his pivotal book The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety. In 1951 he moved to San Francisco where he began teaching Buddhist studies, and in 1956 began his popular radio show, “Way Beyond the West”. By the early sixties, Alan’s radio talks aired nationally and the counterculture movement adopted him as a spiritual spokesperson. He wrote and traveled regularly until his passing in 1973.

 

“Perhaps the foremost interpreter of Eastern disciplines for the contemporary West, Alan Watts had the rare gift of ‘writing beautifully the un-writable’. Watts begins with scholarship and intellect and proceeds with art and eloquence to the frontiers of the spirit. A fascinating entry into the deepest ways of knowing.”

       — LA Times

Jordan Peterson

Jordan Peterson

Dr. Peterson is a professor at the University of Toronto, a clinical psychologist and the author of the million-plus selling 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos (Jan 2018, Penguin Books), which has been a Number 1 bestseller in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, the Netherlands and Brazil, and which is now slated to be translated into 40 languages. His now-classic book, Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief (just released as an audiobook) offers a revolutionary take on the psychology of religion, and the hundred or more scientific papers he published with his colleagues and students have substantively advanced the modern understanding of creativity and personality. He is is regarded by his current University of Toronto students as one of three truly life-changing professors, and was nominated for the prestigious Levinson Teaching Prize as a Harvard professor. His classroom lectures on mythology and the psychology of religion, based on Maps of Meaning, were turned into a popular 13-part TV series on TVO.

Dr. Peterson’s YouTube channel, Jordan Peterson Videos features his university and public lectures (including the most recent 15-part biblical series. slated to continue with the Exodus stories in December 2018) , responses to the polarizing political crises of today, and interviews with people such as Camille Paglia, Jonathan Haidt and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. As of June 2018, the channel has 300+ videos, 1,250,000 subscribers, and 60 million views. His popular podcast is regularly number 1 in iTunes Higher Education category, and varies between Number 1 and Number 3 in Education, overall. His book tour has encompassed 45 cities (as of June 2018) in North America, Europe and Australia, with another 40 slated in Canada, Europe (TBA) and Australia (TBA) between now and February 2019. He has now talked about personal responsibility, truth and meaning in life with more than 100,000 people at live events.

Dr. Peterson and his colleagues have also produced two online programs to help people understand their personalities and improve their lives. The newest, UnderstandMyself, provides its users with detailed information about their personalities, based on work he published with his students here. Tens of thousands have now used it to determine who they are, and to help others understand them, as well. His original self-analysis program, the Self Authoring Suite, (featured in O: The Oprah Magazine, CBC radio, and NPR’s national website), has helped over 200,000 people resolve the problems of their past, rectify their personality faults and enhance their virtues, and radically improve their future. Research documenting the program’s effectiveness can be found here and here.

Dr. Peterson has appeared on many popular podcasts and shows, including the Joe Rogan Experience (#877, #958, #1006), The Rubin Report (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, Free Speech, Psychology, Gender Pronouns), H3H3 (#37), and many more.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs

was an American entrepreneur and business magnate. He was the chairman, chief executive officer (CEO), and a co-founder of Apple Inc., chairman and majority shareholder of Pixar, a member of The Walt Disney Company‘s board of directors following its acquisition of Pixar, and the founder, chairman, and CEO of NeXT. Jobs is widely recognized as a pioneer of the microcomputer revolution of the 1970s and 1980s, along with Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

Jobs was born in San Francisco, California, to parents who put him up for adoption at birth. He was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area during the 1960s. He attended Reed College in 1972 before dropping out that same year, and traveled through India in 1974 seeking enlightenment and studying Zen Buddhism. His declassified FBI report states that he used marijuana and LSD while he was in college, and once told a reporter that taking LSD was “one of the two or three most important things” he had done in his life.

Jobs and Wozniak co-founded Apple in 1976 to sell Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer. Together the duo gained fame and wealth a year later for the Apple II, one of the first highly successful mass-produced personal computers. Jobs saw the commercial potential of the Xerox Alto in 1979, which was mouse-driven and had a graphical user interface (GUI). This led to development of the unsuccessful Apple Lisa in 1983, followed by the breakthrough Macintosh in 1984, the first mass-produced computer with a GUI. The Macintosh introduced the desktop publishing industry in 1985 with the addition of the Apple LaserWriter, the first laser printer to feature vector graphics. Jobs was forced out of Apple in 1985 after a long power struggle with the company’s board and its then-CEO John Sculley. That same year, Jobs took a few of Apple’s members with him to found NeXT, a computer platform development company that specialized in computers for higher-education and business markets. In addition, he helped to develop the visual effects industry when he funded the computer graphics division of George Lucas‘s Lucasfilm in 1986. The new company was Pixar, which produced Toy Story, the first fully computer-animated film.

Apple merged with NeXT in 1997, and Jobs became CEO of his former company within a few months. He was largely responsible for helping revive Apple, which had been at the verge of bankruptcy. He worked closely with designer Jony Ive to develop a line of products that had larger cultural ramifications, beginning in 1997 with the “Think different” advertising campaign and leading to the iMac, iTunes, iTunes Store, Apple Store, iPod, iPhone, App Store, and the iPad. In 2001, the original Mac OS was replaced with a completely new Mac OS X, based on NeXT’s NeXTSTEPplatform, giving the OS a modern Unix-based foundation for the first time. Jobs was diagnosed with a pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor in 2003. He died at age 56 on October 5, 2011, of respiratory arrest related to the tumor.