Rebel Wisdom

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Reflecting on the Pandemic, Zubin Damania

July 3, 2022

A wide-ranging conversation on the experience of sensemaking during the pandemic, with Zubin Damania (ZDoggMD).

Zubin first came to my attention with a viral video at the start of 2020 where he channelled some righteous anger at the medical establishment's response to the pandemic, and said he hoped that the crisis would be the trigger to “burn this broken system to the ground”. For years he's been arguing for a significant change to the medical system, away from treating people as interchangeable parts in a machine and towards a more holistic vision of what he calls Health 3.0.

During the pandemic we compared notes on what we were seeing, through shared frameworks like Ken Wilber's Integral Theory and Jonathan Haidt's “moral tastebuds”. He argues for nuance and complexity, and dubs his political perspective as “alt-middle”.

0:00 - The Pandemic & the Information Ecology

04:02 - Zubin & Health Care 3.0

08:09 - The USP of Rebel Wisdom, curating a conversation

10:09 - The pandemic was a stress test that we failed

14:03 - The internet leaking out into the real world

16:37 - The religiosity of the Covid debate

19:53 - The rise in conspiracy narratives

22:56 - Questioning our own thinking

29:33 - Public intellectuals going off the rails

32:48 - The hermeneutics of suspicion

39:00 - A culture of bullshit

44:14 - Conspiracies thrive in the gaps of the mainstream

46:31 - The pre/trans of the insurgency after 2018

53:34 - Paradox of being outside the institutions - audience capture

58:27 - Warping effects of the tech platforms accelerated on creators

01:00:37 - Attention hijack as opposite of mindfulness

01:02:41 - The tragic arc of Jordan Peterson

01:06:55 - The return of the repressed

01:14:14 - The return of psychedelic medicine

01:18:57 - The limitations of psychedelics

01:22:51 - Meditation & Awakening

01:29:36 - Ayahuasca

01:32:14 - Culture War 2.0 & the memetic tribes

01:43:06 - Post Pandemic Awakening

01:46:39 - The English Taboo Against Earnestness

01:49:30 - Mutual Appreciation Society