If you listen to Lil B's mixtapes, follow him on Twitter or watch his videos, you already know that he's a stream-of-consciousness firehose, an irrepressible fount of childlike wonder and positive vibes. In keeping with his online persona, the Based God delivered a rambling, impassioned sermon to a sold out crowd of devout followers at NYU last night, his first-ever academic lecture. If the talk could be said to have had a theme, it was the 22-year-old rapper's "Based" philosophy, which states as its tenants: being true to oneself, treating others with empathy and forgiveness and retaining a sense of awe for the world and life itself. Of course, the Based God went on plenty of tangents as well, touching on subjects as diverse as cat-adoption, personal hygiene, fracking, taxes, ants and Drake. At one point, he laid on top of a table and pretended to be a baby. At another point, he kissed a fan's hand ("That's my brother right there, his hand is gold"). He announced that he's working on a rock album (California Boy) and mockingly exclaimed, "I'm 'bout to get my Mitt Romney on!" As the night drew to a close, he expressed his desire to take pictures with fans ("for Facebook and Twitter") and sign the kitchen utensils they had brought with them and was immediately mobbed as a result. After a few minutes of this, his handlers tried to convince him to leave the room but he refused, determined to sign every last spatula.
Here are a few of our favorite quotes from last night's #rare lecture:
• Lil B on life: "Nobody asked to be born. Life is hard. Kind of."
• Lil B on relationships: "With relationships right now, I'm just taking it slow, taking it easy, taking my time to respect. Respect women. Respect others. But that's obvious, though."
• Lil B on martyrdom: "I want the world to see that you can have a million stones thrown at you and you can still be positive…I serve humanity by putting myself out there, making myself vulnerable, being criticized, being the most critiqued artist ever…I'm ready to die for the humans. I'm ready to die for positivity."
• Lil B on cat adoption: "I'm the first rapper to adopt a tabby cat. You know I adopted it straight from the ASPCA, you feel me?"
• Lil B on the secret to life: "The secret of life, one of the secrets, is to look at everybody like they're a baby…every person you meet, look at them like a golden, million dollar baby."
• Lil B on ants: " I was having these big ant problems in my house…Seeing these ants and just studying them and respecting them, these ants have their own community too. They love, they fight. And we can't understand what they're telling each other but one day we will. I'm trying, I'm trying."
• Lil B on seat belts: "Everybody make sure you wear seat belts, for real."
• Lil B on hygiene: "Wash your hands, wash your hands. I'm washing my hands all the time."
• Lil B on his political ambitions: "I have nothing to hide. I might run for president."
• Lil B on commerce: "What happened to humans? Everybody's thinking about capital gain. I'm in this for the love. I've been giving it to you for free. Over 2,000 songs."
• Lil B on starting his own colony (or cult?): "I'm gonna have a place where you can come, like a city, where everybody is on the same wavelength of positivity."
• Lil B on being a role model: "I feel like I am a role model. And we all are. We all are role models…This is a big thing, the power of influence. We all have that. Whether you have Twitter followers or you have friends."
• Lil B on fracking: "Let's stop fracking. Who here knows what hydraulic fracking is? Hey brah, stop messing with the earth, brah! I'm like whodie, get that oil out the ocean!"
• Lil B on littering: "I'm not even littering. If I throw this trash right here…I know that this is some animal that's gonna be trapped in it."
• Lil B on the Based God: "The Based God came from positivity, from watching out for people. I am not the Based God, because the Based God is bigger than me. It's crazy."
• Lil B on pride: "I have no pride. So I can be under, as well as be on top."
• Lil B on making his mom proud: "You know, my mom would be happy. You guys are really making me a special person. And I appreciate that."
• Lil B on working with Lil Wayne: "Working with Wayne, it was crazy to see how much love he has for me and for him to see how much I love him…that 'aint the last track we gonna do"
• Lil B on painting: "My mom was a big painter. You know what I do rock with? My favorite is watercolors. I'm a watercolors type of dude, man. Definitely collect some of my rare paintings."
• Lil B on the elderly: "If you see somebody with grey hair, embrace their beauty."
• Lil B on taxes: "I pay taxes. And I'm happy about that. I don't know what it's going for but I pray that it's for the people. Until further notice, I'm paying taxes and I love it."
• Lil B on Drake: "My brother Drake, I love him, everybody is rapping like him. Let my brother Drake have his swag, you feel me? Let Lil B have his swag."
• Lil B on his forthcoming rock album: "My next step, I'm actually releasing my rock album. This is gonna be some garage punk. This is gonna be for the rebels. Look out for the Lil B rock album, California Boy!"
Listen to audio from Lil B's lecture while browsing the photos below: