138 episodes

An exiled Northern Irish anthropologist and a hitchhiking Australian psychologist take a close look at the contemporary crop of 'secular gurus', iconoclasts, and other exiles from the mainstream, offering their own brands of unique takes and special insights.

Leveraging two of the most diverse accents in modern podcasting, Chris and Matt dig deep into the claims, peek behind the psychological curtains, and try to figure out once and for all... What's it all About?

Join us, as we try to puzzle our way through and talk some smart-sounding smack about the intellectual giants of our age, from Jordan Peterson to Robin DiAngelo. Are they revolutionary thinkers or just grifters with delusions of grandeur?

Join us and let's find out!

Decoding the Gurus Christopher Kavanagh and Matthew Browne

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.3 • 798 Ratings

An exiled Northern Irish anthropologist and a hitchhiking Australian psychologist take a close look at the contemporary crop of 'secular gurus', iconoclasts, and other exiles from the mainstream, offering their own brands of unique takes and special insights.

Leveraging two of the most diverse accents in modern podcasting, Chris and Matt dig deep into the claims, peek behind the psychological curtains, and try to figure out once and for all... What's it all About?

Join us, as we try to puzzle our way through and talk some smart-sounding smack about the intellectual giants of our age, from Jordan Peterson to Robin DiAngelo. Are they revolutionary thinkers or just grifters with delusions of grandeur?

Join us and let's find out!

    Ranking the Gurus

    Ranking the Gurus

    Decoding the Gurus is now a venerable institution and as such we have built up quite a menagerie of would-be gurus and even a handful of not-really gurus.
    So like all the hip kids today, we decided to look back at our previous gurus and arrange them on a tier list of Secular Guruosity.
    If you would like to play along we’ve made a version accessible online so you can provide your rankings (available here) or you can see ours.
    Also, due to an image-importing hiccup, we missed Sam Harris (B), Robert Wright (D) and Richard Dawkins (D). All are now added to the template!
    Hope you enjoy and we will be back soon with a full-length decoding of Gabor Maté before the concluding chapter of the Dr. K trilogy.
    If you want to support the show, join us at: https://www.patreon.com/DecodingTheGurus

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Supplementary Materials 10: Rigorous Conspiracy Hypothesising about the Trump Shooting

    Supplementary Materials 10: Rigorous Conspiracy Hypothesising about the Trump Shooting

    A special Supplementary Material where we take a gander at some of the reactions to the recent assassination attempt on Trump and then dig deeper with some responsible model conspiracy hypothesizing with Bret and Heather. Also featuring:
    Our completely predictable response to the shootingJohn Cusack's Conspiracy TheoryTim Kennedy's Conspiracy Venn DiagramScientific Cosplay with Bret and HeatherLearning about logic with HeatherThe Lab Leak theory revisited with BretThe Fall of Plato's CaveMind Controlled ShootersThe Unity 2024 Platform
    The full episode is available for Patreon subscribers (57 mins).
    Join us at: https://www.patreon.com/DecodingTheGurus
    Links 
    Cave of Mirrors: The 234th Evolutionary Lens with Bret Weinstein and Heather HeyingTim Kennedy: How Leadership Failures Led to an Assassination Attempt on TrumpJohn Cusack's conspiracy tweet

    • 32 min
    Dr. K (Part 2): Rhetorical Judo Flips

    Dr. K (Part 2): Rhetorical Judo Flips

    Join Matt and Chris for a trademark 'short' episode as they continue to navigate the complex, occasionally controversial world of Dr. K in this second multi-dimensional episode. This time they take a look at some more recent content and reflect on whether they were wrong to identify Dr. K as such a strong advocate of Ayurvedic medicine. In their investigations, they explore the science of visualisation and manifestation, updated genomic information about the Doshas, and the power of mantras to bend the universe.
    But primarily they focus on the recent lively discussion between Dr. K and another famous YouTube Doctor, Dr. Mike. Their discussion touched on various topics including the mechanisms of science, the power of consciousness, personalized treatments, and the placebo effect. All good fodder for the DTG grinder even if it ends up, as it so often does, with Chris and Matt gently discussing their points of view about the nature of mind and the (alleged) mystery of subjective experience (we are sorry!).
    So join us for a thought-provoking ride through scientific criticism, holistic practices, and age-old East vs. West / Alternative vs Science-based medicine debates as we attempt to decipher whether Dr. K is a modern-era internet sage or a charismatic storyteller and alternative medicine advocate.
    Links
    Doctor Mike: Debating The Value Of Eastern Medicine (Ayurveda) | Healthy Gamer Dr. KHeatlhyGamerGG: The Truth About Visualization & ManifestationHealthyGamerGG: Optimize Performance and Develop Self-Understanding with AyurvedaScience is Dope: Should we adopt Ayurveda | An Indian's response | Dr. Mike vs Dr. K

    • 3 hr 58 min
    Supplementary Materials 9: Galaxy Brains Collide

    Supplementary Materials 9: Galaxy Brains Collide

    We get put in our place by an old champion, who reminds us why they are the king. Also this episode:
    Chris' post-conference thoughts on the UKMatt's Great American Burger GiveawayNon-Tribal Joe Rogan meets Jimmy DoreLex Fridman meets Ivanka TrumpThe UK election and the heterodox responseJordan Peterson and the spiritual kingdom of FarageismRussell Brand and Alex Jones pray togetherGalaxy Brains Collide: Eric Weinstein meets Terrence HowardStill wearing a jacket to save the worldEric is the one who knocksEric the scientist defends his colleague Neal deGrasse TysonThe hidden layersGold-tier criticism and cultish subredditsBad faith Matt and Good faith Chris say Farewell
    The full episode is available for Patreon subscribers (1hr 29mins).
    Join us at: https://www.patreon.com/DecodingTheGurus
    Links 
    “Something BIG is about to happen” - EXCLUSIVE Alex Jones Interview on INFOWARS shut down - 391 Russell BrandIvanka Trump: Politics, Family, Real Estate, Fashion, Music, and Life | Lex Fridman Podcast #436Joe Rogan Experience #2173 - Jimmy DoreJoe Rogan Experience #2171 - Eric Weinstein & Terrence HowardJordan B. Peterson Podcast - Conservative Failings and the Reform UK Party | Nigel Farage

    • 38 min
    Dr. K (Part 1): OPed Ayurvedic Medicine vs. Nerfed 'Western' Allopathy

    Dr. K (Part 1): OPed Ayurvedic Medicine vs. Nerfed 'Western' Allopathy

    Alok Kanojia, better known as Dr. K, is a charismatic psychiatrist and online streamer who offers a unique blend of psychological, self-help, and spiritual advice to guide individuals through the complexities of modern life, aiming to help them become Healthy Gamers™. Join Matt and Chris as they embark on a multi-part journey through the diverse biomes of Dr. K's content and try to ascertain the meta.
    In this first episode, Matt and Chris take a critical look at a 2019 video in which Dr. K discusses his views on Ayurvedic medicine, the problems with Western medicine, and the unacknowledged scientific evidence for Ayurvedic claims. We consider whether the evidence provided matches the rhetoric and relive youthful follies as we immerse ourselves in the all too familiar water of complementary and alternative medicine discourse.
    So join us as we learn about the universal mind and single type of depression proposed by modern medicine, how a tripartite classification is actually incredibly individualistic, how the shape of your nose and kink in your hair predicts the food you should eat and the quality of your bowel movements, and the surprising benefits of drinking elephant milk.
    In Part 2, we will delve into Dr. K's recent discussion/debate over Ayurvedic medicine with Dr. Mike, another popular YouTube doctor. And finally Part 3 will focus on the dynamics of Dr. K's long-form, somewhat controversial, mental health-themed interviews with influencers.
    Links 
    Dr. K's Healthy Gamer GG websiteHealthy Gamer GG- Ayurveda Pt. 1: Gunas, Cognitive Fingerprint, PersonalityScience is Dope: Should we adopt Ayurveda | An Indian's response | Dr. Mike vs Dr. KList of Studies mentioned in the episodeSimon Singh's court case that Chris mentionedThe Iced Coffee Hour: Harvard Psychiatrist on How To Get Ahead of 99.9% of People (Starting NOW)Some of Matt's related papers: 1) Thomson, P., Jones, J., Browne, M., & Leslie, S. J. (2014). Why people seek complementary and alternative medicine before conventional medical treatment: a population-based study. Complementary therapies in clinical practice, 20(4), 339-346. & 2) Browne, M., Thomson, P., Rockloff, M. J., & Pennycook, G. (2015). Going against the herd: psychological and cultural factors underlying the ‘vaccination confidence gap’. PLoS one, 10(9), e0132562.

    • 3 hr 14 min
    Supplementary Materials 8: Lab Leak Discourse, Toxic YouTube Dynamics, and the Metaphysics of Peppa Pig

    Supplementary Materials 8: Lab Leak Discourse, Toxic YouTube Dynamics, and the Metaphysics of Peppa Pig

    We stare into the abyss and welcome darkness into our souls as we discuss:
    Feedback on the Žižek episodeMiddle Aged Men's Health UpdateAlina Chan and the newest round of Lab Leak DiscourseDiscourse Surfing PunditsAlex O'Connor cornering Jordan Peterson on the resurrectionThe philosophical and Marxist implications of Peppa PigPotential Alternatives to Hipster Christianity and New AtheismAndrew Gold's Heretics Channel and Toxic YouTube DynamicsEditorializing and Responsible CriticismBalaji Srinivasan's Waffling Defence of HubermanThe 'Elite Defector' PoseVerbal Fluency vs. SubstanceHeterodox and Anti-Vaxx Incentive StructuresJames Lindsay's most recent idiocyDesperate Call to Action
    Links 
    Alina Chan's NYT Article on the Lab LeakOur episode addressing Alina and Matt Ridley's points with relevant expertsJordan Peterson's Podcast: Navigating Belief, Skepticism, and the Afterlife | Alex O'Connor @CosmicSkeptic | EP 451Andrew Gold - Heretics: EXPOSED: I Didn't Show THIS in Viral 'Woke' Debate with Eni Aluko (4K)Balaji's huge Twitter thread defending HubermanSummary of Huberman's Math MemeTop Earning Substacks 
    The full episode is available for Patreon subscribers (1 hr 14 mins).
    Join us at: https://www.patreon.com/DecodingTheGurus

    • 42 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
798 Ratings

798 Ratings

czspeed ,

Wish I knew who less of these subjects are…

As an American, I appreciate two non-American’s views on these various figures, since much of the media I am exposed to is highly US-centric. Even more important, I appreciate that neither have the sort of British accent that Americans have long been conditioned to accept as automatic authority figures.

I’ve heard of a majority of the colorful characters who are assessed for their Gurometer™️, which should indicate that I’m rather inundated with various podcasts. I don’t always agree with the hosts and their takes on certain topics, but I really appreciate the fresh take that they provide.
No one is without bias, and the hosts are upfront about their own leanings with regards to social, academic, and political issues. The lens through which they view is informative and unique.

tommyk2000 ,

Rough

Pretty hard to listen to. I’d like to hear them refute some thing instead of complain that people make money from doing a podcast. Irony alert they’re making well over 6k a month from their TWO episodes per month.

Gogigriff ,

Self centered people who talk too much

Not easy to listen to

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