James Arthur Jancik interviews Jan Irvin on Feet to the Fire

A very good interview I did recently with James Arthur Jancik. James did an excellent job, and I feel it's one of my better recent interviews.

See Feet 2 Fire website: www.feet2fire.com
And archives: http://innersites.com/feet2fire/archives2011/f2f110717.htm


  22 comments for “James Arthur Jancik interviews Jan Irvin on Feet to the Fire

  1. Ryan Caron
    July 21, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    You’re getting progressively better at explaining the trivium with each interview that passes.

    Keep it up Jan.

    • Jan Irvin
      July 21, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      It also helps when you have a host like James that’s there to get a full understanding for himself and aids the conversation,rather than interrupting and getting upset every time something is challenging.

      I give the credit to him, but thank you anyway.

  2. Julian
    July 22, 2011 at 10:18 am

    I first heard of your work through the Free Your Mind Conference in Philadelphia, PA. April 2011. It appears that the central theme of your work is the importance of needing an education in order to evaluate information and be able to uncover the truth.

    I traditional college education can accomplish this, however, along the way (during or after the degree is earned) it is up to the student (graduate) to realize (see) the truth and then back step and analyze how the truth was uncovered. This experience of truth recognition is what education is really about and I would call that experience wisdom.

    • Jan Irvin
      July 22, 2011 at 2:00 pm

      Julian, you’re wrong about the traditional college education. It does not teach these tools. Only certain Ivy League schools teach it. This stuff used to also be taught in GRAMMAR SCHOOL, so the fact that people would have to wait to college to get it says enough – though unfortunately you’re wrong. Please see the Trivium Study link on the left of the website and start from the bottom up and also see http://www.triviumeducation.com

      • Julian
        July 22, 2011 at 11:36 pm


        I will have to look into it further. Thanks for the links. I would say this (because I earned a BS and MS), your BS or BA degree teaches you how to learn and think while your advanced degree (MA or MS) teaches you how to get things done–problem-solve.

        The missing link in higher education is learning methods of confirming: what is the truth. This is a critical part missing and is very important because of the way many individuals and organizations (the media or government, for example) are lying to us via their methods of communication. I personally have filled in (to various levels) this missing peice by using meditation. In my experience meditation is the search for the truth.


        • Jan Irvin
          July 22, 2011 at 11:50 pm

          Hi Julian, please do look into it further. From my perspective, understanding both college education and the trivium, you’re gravely misunderstanding exactly what is being discussed.

          • nuni
            July 28, 2011 at 5:03 pm

            How is triviumeducation different form liberal arts? I’m doubtful that one cannot learn about logic or critical thinking in traditional college education. What college doesn’t offer philosophy or psychology courses?

          • Jan Irvin
            July 28, 2011 at 5:21 pm

            You seem confused. The trivium is a specific way in which the 7 liberal arts are taught that was developed and proved over 2500 years ago. Simply getting a modern “liberal arts” education studying logic or critical thinking is NOT the same. There’s a huge difference. Please go to the triviumeducation.com website and watch the videos, listen to the audio, read the books, and look at things for yourself. People trained in the trivium don’t put false logic before study. Clearly, if you have a college education, you were not taught the trivium as a very principle of how it works: GRAMMAR = knowledge = RESEARCH = who what where when, Logic = dialectic = understanding = why, rhetoric = wisdom = how. Anyone who puts logic, or conclusions (assumptions) before RESEARCH – who what where when, is not trained in the trivium. You can argue all day long for the modern version of “liberal arts” education being equivalent to the trivium, but you’re wrong. It would be easier for you to study the trivium material, get the facts straight and see for yourself how it’s not been taught in “college” education for over 100 years – as is the very purpose of the trivium in itself. Enjoy learning.

        • Stan
          July 26, 2011 at 12:40 pm


          Read more about outcome-based education. All colleges and universities that give out diplomas are on the outcome-based education system. They, the outcome-based education colleges and universities, do not teach autodidacticism through the trivium and quadrivium. Why don’t they teach it? Because they are making big bucks out of suckers like you and me :-))))

  3. July 23, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Jan, You’re probably aware of this, but I haven’t seen mention of it on your site.

    Within the charter school movement is a sub-movement of schools that base their curricula on the trivium.

    This one is in my neighborhood: http://www.novaclassical.org/academics/the-trivium-at-nova/

    Let’s hope the trend grows.

    • Jan Irvin
      July 23, 2011 at 11:10 am

      Yes, there are. Unfortunately many of them are the “Christian classical education” which means they teach it out of order.

  4. July 24, 2011 at 10:35 am

    Yo, Jan-

    I heard your recent interview on f2f and I agree with Ryan that you’re getting better with each passing interview. I think it’s great you getting more exposure through these other info broadcasters.

    I did have a few comments about the content on one of your interviews however:
    1) At around 1hr 5 min in you talk about sophism, and use the term “good sophism”. Is there such a thing? Isn’t sophism using rhetoric to lead an audience away from the truth?
    2) About the mathematics of statistics. The chances of rolling a 5 with one dice is one in 6. However, if one rolls that dice 10 times the chances of rolling a 5 “statistically” goes up if I’m not mistaken.
    3) When is racism NOT a the fallacy of “guilt by association”? Perhaps you mispoke when you said it “sometimes” is.

    All in all I give you very good marks. Keep it up and you’ll just get better. You obviously know the material quite well. If it were me and I was going to do interviews like these often, I’d write an outline of key points and specific fallacies. I also like when you explain the fallacies by first categorizing them by relevance, presumption and ambiguity. This really helps me understand the large number of fallacies and it makes it easier to identify a statement as a fallacy by thinking in those terms.

    • Jan Irvin
      July 24, 2011 at 11:29 am

      Thanks for the feedback. And 1) there are two schools of sophists, Demosthenes and Isocrates. Demosthenes is the dark, 322 Skull and Bones version. 2) if you have a 1 in 6 chance of rolling a 5 on the di on one roll, you’d still have a 1 in 6 chance on every roll after that. 3) I was probably thinking of Talmudist Zionism at the time.

      • July 26, 2011 at 1:33 pm

        There are two schools of sophists… So then it isn’t as simple as saying the definition of a sophist is “one who uses rhetoric to lead others away from truth”? If you’re not moving towards truth you must by definition be moving away from it (excluding the case you’re moving in a circular path!)

        Please contrast a statement made by the two types of sophists and explain why either of them is helping to convey truth to others.

      • Stan
        July 26, 2011 at 2:00 pm

        “2) if you have a 1 in 6 chance of rolling a 5 on the di on one roll, you’d still have a 1 in 6 chance on every roll after that.”

        That actually depends on the die you rolled. Different die have different ratios of rolling a five. There are die that roll a 5 all the time 🙂

      • Stan
        July 26, 2011 at 2:00 pm

        “2) if you have a 1 in 6 chance of rolling a 5 on the di on one roll, you’d still have a 1 in 6 chance on every roll after that.”

        That actually depends on the die you rolled. Different die have different ratios of rolling a five. There is a die that rolls a 5 all the time 🙂

        • Jan Irvin
          July 26, 2011 at 6:15 pm

          Yeah, fixed di. If you’re cheating what’s the point in asking? Obviously the cheat is falsely increasing his odds.

  5. Jan Irvin
    July 27, 2011 at 1:13 am

    I’ve just uploaded a better quality audio file. Enjoy!

  6. BL
    July 27, 2011 at 6:55 am

    One point in the interview didn’t make sense in my opinion: You cited McKenna in the “appeal to novelty” category and you used his example of the Timewave Zero and his “Novelty Theory”. First of all, I don’ know why you’d choose him out of all the much larger offenders out there, but that’s your choice, and furthermore it didn’t work as an example. His use of “novelty” in that context is not the same as the common definition of “novelty” in the fallacy “appeal to novelty”. McKenna means it as “change” or “progress” in the Novelty Theory, not something that is “new”. I think an accurate example would have been a commercial that convinces people to buy a new computer simply because it’s new..”new is better”. Don’t ya think?
    That’s all. Keep up the good work.

    • Jan Irvin
      July 27, 2011 at 9:48 am

      I think you’re wrong. But that’s fine. And define change or progress – other than new. The entire basis of his theory is an appeal to novelty IMHO.

  7. Leif
    August 4, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    great interview, thanks

  8. October 10, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    john major jenkins doesnt know what he’s talking about…
    of course like your website but you need to test the spelling on quite a few of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I to find it very bothersome to tell the truth nevertheless I will certainly come again again.

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