61 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 • 457 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!

    *Patreon Preview* Decoding Academia 8: Monkey see, Monkey do?

    *Patreon Preview* Decoding Academia 8: Monkey see, Monkey do?

    Ahead of the Jaron Lanier episode a special preview episode of our ongoing Decoding Academia series.
    This week Matt and Chris take a look at a classic comparative study of social learning processes in chimpanzees and infants (Horner and Whiten, 2005). They discover the correct method to break into a puzzle box, that chimpanzees are sometimes more logical than people, and that popular idioms do not always house universal truths.
    For anyone interested in reading the paper it is available for free https://www.emory.edu/LIVING_LINKS/publications/articles/Horner_Whiten_2005.pdf (here).
    We will be back later in the week with our normal decoding episode.

    • 59 min
    Interview with Michael Inzlicht on the Replication Crisis, Mindfulness, and Responsible Heterodoy

    Interview with Michael Inzlicht on the Replication Crisis, Mindfulness, and Responsible Heterodoy

    It's been a while but don't worry the DtG elves have been hard at work and a veritable bounty of content is on its way. The long-promised Jaron Lanier decoding is on its way next week, but this week the cross-overs continue as we are joined by Mickey Inzlicht, esteemed Psychologist, Research Excellence Faculty Scholar at the University of Toronto, and long term (retired) co-host of the Two Psychologists, Four Beers podcast.
    Mickey has now hung up his podcasting headphones but like an old prizefighter, we were able to lure him back into the limelight one last time with promises of unlimited booze and global fame. To keep Mickey from realising we could provide neither, we then subjected him to an unrelenting barrage of questions for almost two hours. Under our relentless questioning, Mickey gave up the goods on some precious long-buried information, including what it's like to work with Jordan Peterson, the details on his campaign to destroy introspection, and what he really thinks of the Gurus. We also manage to discuss some serious stuff like the state of contemporary psychology, the impact of the replication crisis, whether preregistration is always beneficial (it is, don't listen to Matt!), and to resolve the fundamental nature of the Self!
    Mickey is a wise egg, a funny guy, and a veteran podcaster and we really enjoyed this conversation so we hope you will too! Stick around at the end for some Tamler themed feedback and more pronunciation errors than you can shake a stick at.
    Back next week with Jaron Lanier!
    Links
    http://michaelinzlicht.com/ (Mickey's Homepage)
    https://www.fourbeers.com/27 (Two Psychologists Four Beers 27: Against Mindfulness)
    https://www.thestar.com/opinion/2018/05/25/i-was-jordan-petersons-strongest-supporter-now-i-think-hes-dangerous.html (Bernard Schiff's Article on Jordan Peterson for the Toronto Star: I was Jordan Peterson’s strongest supporter. Now I think he’s dangerous.)
    https://econtent.hogrefe.com/doi/full/10.1027/1864-9335/a000398 (Inzlicht, M., and Friese, M. (2019). The past, present, and future of ego depletion. Social Psychology.)
    Friese, M., Loschelder, D. D., Gieseler, K., Frankenbach, J., and Inzlicht, M. (2019). Is ego depletion real? An analysis of arguments. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 23(2), 107-131.
    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/jun/30/facebook-emotion-study-breached-ethical-guidelines-researchers-say (Guardian article about that Facebook Study)
    https://myresearchspace.uws.ac.uk/ws/portalfiles/portal/10993811/2018_12_13_Hoehl_et_al_Over_Imitation.pdf (Hoehl, S., Keupp, S., Schleihauf, H., McGuigan, N., Buttelmann, D., and Whiten, A. (2019). ‘Over-imitation’: A review and appraisal of a decade of research. Developmental Review, 51, 90-108.)

    • 2 hr 11 min
    Very Bad Gurus with David Pizarro & Tamler Sommers

    Very Bad Gurus with David Pizarro & Tamler Sommers

    In the most ambitious crossover since the Fraggles met the Muppets, this week we have a special joint episode with moral psychologist https://twitter.com/peez?lang=en (David Pizzaro) and famed philosopher and ghost detective, Tamler Sommers. Also known as the hosts of a small academic podcast Very Bad Wizards.
    Stealing the format of their show we have a culture war heavy intro section featuring discussion of Joe Rogan censorship, covid debates, Japanese maid cafes, and the great ghost debate of 2022. Following that we move on to an in-depth round-table discussion of the 2012 Paul Thomas Anderson movie 'The Master'. The movie explores the relationship between a wastrel and a cult leader and features performances by Joacquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Amy Adams. There is no denying it's an acting masterclass (and thematically relevant for the show!) but is it any good?
    Join us and help us as we attempt to decode with the wizards.
    Links
    https://www.verybadwizards.com/ (Very Bad Wizards podcast)
    https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/ev-237-defining-religion-with-chris-kavanagh/id1213974770?i=1000558258706 (Embrace the Void 237: Defining "religion" with Chris Kavanagh)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_aGJMLSGKE ('Here We Are Podcast' Ep. 381 Internet Gurus w/ Dr. Chris Kavanagh)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FlXxxdwQ2ME (The Stoa: Truth, Trust, and Culture War w/ Zubin Damania, Christopher Kavanagh, Ben Burgis, and David Fuller)

    • 2 hr 15 min
    Interview with Timbah Toast on his Tim Pool Documentary & Scooby Doo Partisans

    Interview with Timbah Toast on his Tim Pool Documentary & Scooby Doo Partisans

    This week's episode we have an extended interview with an independent decoder, the YouTube documentary maker, Timbah-on-Toast. A kindred spirit in many respects Timbah is perhaps the ultimate form of the 'I can't come to bed, someone is wrong on the internet' meme. He makes detailed videos analysing the content of a variety of internet pundits, especially those who are posing as something they are not.
    If you have not experienced one of Timbah's documentaries you should go do so now. He has an excellent 3-part series on Dave Rubin's interview techniques and another 4-part series breaking down the career of the propagandist founder of the Veritas Project, James O'Keefe.
    His most recent series, however, is looking at self-proclaimed milquetoast centrist fence-sitter, the eternal beanie wearing Tim Pool. We compare notes, delve into what makes Timbah motivated to do what he does, and discuss his Scooby Doo narrative arc.
    So join us as Chris meets a kindred consumer of irritating content and Matt continues to ponder if it's all just cloud castles and narcissism.
    Also featuring... a Weinstein World update, the standard banter quotient, and an abusive Patreon shoutout segment.
    Links
    https://twitter.com/jordanbpeterson/status/1513286026659250178?s=20andt=JIYxIy3tvKVHYM-FGWcdxQ (Jordan Peterson's 'Smug Judge' Tweet)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NYz1DJ4ByM (Bret Weinstein and Jonathan Pageau: Ancient Wisdom, Modern World)
    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPslWoHNC5x3noyezZ79BlkvGV1XK3ubf (Timbah's Series on Dave Rubin: Battle of Ideas)
    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPslWoHNC5x3kroln-h38kaS5lULne8cZ (Timbah's Series on James O'Keefe: 10 Years of Truth)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRfbczIaR7E (Tim Pool: Chaotic News Analyst)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=onXJ7PItu8g (Tim Pool: Fence Sitter)

    • 2 hr 2 min
    Reverend Sun Myung Moon: Absolute Decoding

    Reverend Sun Myung Moon: Absolute Decoding

    This week we return one more time to the disturbing world of Reverend Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church, also known as the 'Moonies', this time with a historical decoding episode.
    We are joined again this week by Elgen Strait, from Falling Out podcast, who helps us with a historical decoding of Reverend Moon's speeches and Moonie promotional material.
    Due to the subject matter we cannot promise a barrel of laughs but we hope this episode offers some useful insights into the approach of a genuine cult leader. It's also a useful comparison episode to see where there are parallels with the modern secular gurus we usually examine and where they diverge.
    So join us as we return to an imagined glory era of America in the 1950s (or was it 70s) when Absolute Sex and a God centred ideology was all anyone needed for a perfect society... at least according to Moon.
    Links
    https://www.fallingoutpod.com/ (Falling Out Podcast)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQXlglbh3V8 (Sun Myung Moon: God Bless America Festival (1976) Rare Complete Bicentennial Documentary) and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAiXQo93sLc (We will Stand. Rev. Sun Myung Moon )
    https://soundcloud.com/qanonanonymous/episode-160-the-moonies-conquer-dc-feat-elgen-strait (QAnon Anonymous 160: The Moonies Conquer DC feat Elgen Strait)
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-moonies-speech-unifaction-church-b1918750.html (Article on Trump's appearance at Unification Church linked event)
    https://twitter.com/thebadstats/status/1508579434441236482 (Jordan Peterson speaking with Andy Ngo about Antifa)

    • 1 hr 46 min
    Interview with Elgen Strait on growing up in the Moonies & cultish manipulation

    Interview with Elgen Strait on growing up in the Moonies & cultish manipulation

    This episode is the first of two linked episodes in which we delve into the disturbing world of Reverend Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church also known as the 'Moonies'.
    Here in an interview episode we introduce https://twitter.com/FallingOutPod (Elgen Strait), host of the Falling Out Podcast which is "a podcast about leaving the Moonies and other cults, as told by the kids who grew up within them."
    The topic matter is serious and Elgen deftly introduces us to the manipulative cult dynamics he experienced first hand, as well as offering some broader information about how the Moonies craft their public image and raise funds.
    However, Elgen is a man after our own hearts and his dark sense of humour means that he can also enjoy a laugh at Moon's expense and enlighten us about Absolute Sex(!), a term that might mean something slightly different than you imagine.
    Our next episode will be guest co-hosted by Elgen as we take an excursion from the contemporary secular gurus and attempt to decode some historical recordings from a bonafide religious cult leader.
    This episode hopefully provides the foundations to better understand that decoding and we hope you 'enjoy' the discussion with Elgen as much as we did, despite the subject matter!
    Links
    https://www.fallingoutpod.com/ (Falling Out Podcast)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQXlglbh3V8 (Sun Myung Moon: God Bless America Festival (1976) Rare Complete Bicentennial Documentary) and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAiXQo93sLc (We will Stand. Rev. Sun Myung )Moon(content for the decoding episode)
    https://soundcloud.com/qanonanonymous/episode-160-the-moonies-conquer-dc-feat-elgen-strait (QAnon Anonymous 160: The Moonies Conquer DC feat Elgen Strait)
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-moonies-speech-unifaction-church-b1918750.html (Article on Trump's appearance at Unification Church linked event)

    Podcast Recommendations
    http://www.wdfpodcast.com/ (When Diplomacy Fails)
    https://monocle.com/radio/shows/the-foreign-desk/ (Monocle 24: Foreign Desk)
    https://warontherocks.com/podcasts/ (War on the Rocks)

    • 1 hr 31 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
457 Ratings

457 Ratings

Ltbeasy ,

These guys

Just give it a listen and prepare for a lot of laughs and we’ll articulated arguments broken down

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Let Chris talk!

Let Chris talk! Let Chris talk!

I say it half in jest. Love you guys. Great show. Keep up the good work.

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