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The Moral Landscape

Panera Bread Olentangy Plaza

875 Bethel Road 43214 Phone: (614) 457-6800 · Columbus, OH

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What we're about

It's a fascinating and sometimes terrifying time to be alive. Technology is transforming the way we communicate. Instead of tuning into the television at night, millions of people have turned on YouTube to search for whatever content they want: cat videos, news, astronomy videos, and even long-form conversations about any topic imaginable. The Internet has overtaken mainstream television as the best place to get information you want, when you want it.

The Internet has also provided a crucial venue for thinkers like Sam Harris, Jordan Peterson, Dave Rubin, Ben Shapiro, Steven Pinker, and many others to talk about things that are missing from the mainstream cultural narrative, and especially things that don't conform to what scholar Thomas E. Woods calls "the three-by-five card of allowable opinion".

Why are people allowed to criticize certain groups, individuals, and religions, but others are never allowed to be examined critically? Why do people believe that Western culture is a patriarchal tyranny? Do all cultures produce ideas, behaviors, and traditions that are equally valid? Why are the left and right polarizing so rapidly? How do people find meaning in a post-Christian world? What is truth? Is everything "simply perspective" or are there certain unchanging, undeniable truths? Is morality relative?

Questions like these and many others come up regularly in interviews, podcasts, and videos by a group of individuals Eric Weinstein called "The Intellectual Dark Web". The aforementioned Peterson, Harris, Rubin, Shapiro, Pinker, and Weinstein are all included in this group. Their books, especially Dr. Peterson's "12 Rules for Life", have received widespread public attention.

Many of the people currently in this Meetup have been especially influenced by Dr. Peterson's work. Between all of us, there are many stories of overcoming depression, taking on additional responsibility in life, and meeting various life goals that we previously were not on track to achieve. For me personally, Dr. Peterson's first appearance on Joe Rogan's podcast was one of the most life-changing podcast episodes I had ever listened to at that point. His Maps of Meaning and Psychological Influence of the Biblical Stories YouTube series were both instrumental in helping me out of depression, and working seriously on my health, habits, and career.

The Intellectual Dark Web Columbus Meetup has two main goals: to help its members nobly pursue responsibility and meaning by developing strong friendships with like-minded people who are interested in philosophy and cultural issues, and to facilitate a better dialogue in the culture among people who disagree on a wide range of issues. We want our members to be philosophically principled and well-educated, but not stubborn or closed to new ideas. We're fundamentally about building bridges - not unhinged tribalism.

If this sounds like a group, you'd like to be a part of, please send me a message! The easiest way to reach me is via Facebook Messenger:


Nate Major

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