Political Science

The Breathe Free Principles

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When I expected a fairly good read, I was confronted with nothing but a disappointing bundle of incoherent statements...

Synopsis

The far Left and the far Right are both wrong.

The Breathe Free Principles book gives us something to agree on.

A great gift for your thinking friends.

In this rather unpleasant book, the author was trying to present the reader with some laws called "The Breathe Free" principles for people to follow so that they would have a common and mutual ground of "good" amongst them. This is ultimately intended to be a philosophy that would end the disagreement amongst people, especially between the left and right parties in governments, by utilizing "The American idea of liberty in the pursuit of happiness".


I just don't know where to start when it comes to how unsystematic and unbeneficial this read was, which is probably one of the worst I have read. I don't intend to demean the author; alas I will show some examples of why I found it to be as such.


The first sentence you read in this book is the following: "Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me." First of all, excuse me, what is that? Who are you? Should "me" refer to the psyche of each person out there? Who even said that there will eventually be prevailing peace on Earth? Who said that this is how the world should be? This over-optimistic sentence gave a terrible first impression, and I knew instantly that I'd be reading a book written by someone who is probably slightly blinded by an illogically over-optimistic view of the world. I was not fond of this part, and one could easily oppose that philosophically, which is unnecessary, while noting that the author didn't even properly support this extremely unreasonable subliminal argument.


The author then, before trying to give the principles, provided us with some definitions. He started with defining "good", and that endeavor, on its own, was too painful for me to read. I was just bewildered by the amount of inconsistent and fallacious statements being presented that I felt that I no longer wanted to finish this read. The whole premise of the book is given by the definition of good, presented by the author: "Good is what results from mutually beneficial interactions." I just found this statement to be abhorrently obnoxious, essentially flawed, and fundamentally unacceptable. I understand that the author is merely providing a definition here, but when a statement leads to obvious problems, there has to be a clarification. If act X were to be mutually beneficial to some parties, then it does not necessarily have to be good. The author didn't even support this argument, he just said it, and it is remarkably straightforward for one to refute it philosophically as well. What about those who say that good is something universal? Isn't good something good independently of what others perceive it to be? Can't something be universally good without it being mutually beneficial to anyone? Why wasn't this regarded at all? It just seemed like someone was giving a terrible, unsupported, over-optimistic opinion. Reaching this far, I considered stopping, but I didn't. These definitions were like a premise or a motivation for the main theory of the book, and they were just too incoherent and fallacious that the whole notion behind the book started to crumble. Nonetheless, the more I read, the worse it got, and the more inconsistent the ideas became.


I mean, I understand that the author was trying to provide some reformative morality of agreement and so on, which is not necessarily correct nor useful. However, I could hardly agree with one definition or principle in the whole book; none of them seemed to be sound or supported enough for a reader to take them in and consider them. One cannot expect to present ideas to this world without supporting them, because people will naturally tend to question the validity of such concepts.


A new concept then was introduced to be utilized as a foundation of this book, namely the notion of "the grid", which was also based on the previous definitions. Once again, the author just showed us this and said: "Please use it." Okay, but why? Actually, I have many reasons not to. Why was there no effort in convincing me otherwise, knowing that this is of the utmost importance?


When I reached the proposed principles after it, things went down the hill even faster than I anticipated. I can hardly agree on even one of them, and the main logic used is this: "This is good, do this." But who says so? Why? What's the logic behind it? How was this supported? Why didn't the author account for the refutations of these ideas to refute them himself and establish credibility? Essentially speaking, almost all principles were flawed in my humble point of view, and I can show that. Additionally, they sounded very unprofessional, and there is a crucial need to fix them by providing sound and articulated arguments that support these notions. This should have been done for basically everything else in this book too.


In conclusion, I was expecting much more when I read the main claim of the author and thought that it might be a good idea to present a moderate stance, and I was excited to read what he had to say. I realize that the writer was trying to present what he deemed to be best to end the conflict, but that's just not enough. I do not think this book was carefully devised, nor meditated on before writing, and I assume that the author was driven by a somehow blinded over-optimistic view of the world. In addition to that, there were no supporting arguments for anything basically, and the ideas just seemed to be incoherent. I hold that it would be an excellent idea if the author thoughtfully reconsiders what he wrote, and if the next time he presents us with more logically sound statements that are supported with logical, and preferably empirical, evidence. Also, it would be a huge plus if the writer would provide very evident counterarguments and then refute them to establish credibility. All in all, I don't believe that the whole book is beyond salvation, but it would be wise for the author to restructure his thoughts into supported ideas. I surely think that there is much more work to be done here, because this book, as it is now, is very disappointing.

Reviewed by

First of all, Hello!
My name is Hassan Zayour and I am currently majoring in Electrical and Computer Engineering, double majoring in Pure Mathematics, and minoring in Philosophy at the American University of Beirut. My favorite activities are reading and writing.

Synopsis

The far Left and the far Right are both wrong.

The Breathe Free Principles book gives us something to agree on.

A great gift for your thinking friends.

Introduction

Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me. To accomplish this, we need some tools to communicate with the cynics and the stone throwers. Please read on.


What does the word "good" mean to you? Do your discussions often go like this:


“That is good.”

“No it's not.”


“Yes it is!”

“No it's not.”


“You’re an idiot!”

“YOU’RE the idiot!!”


This goes on to the point of endless bickering or even physical fighting. With groups it can lead to major conflicts or wars. All from people trying to figure out, "What is good?"


One could even say that every interpersonal problem, misunderstanding or disagreement you have is due to a lack of a clear definition of what is good.


So let’s try to develop a precise definition of what is good.


This will provide a useful tool for having respectful discussions about contentious personal, group and governmental issues. Ideally it will help you to clarify what you stand for, and provide a powerful way to effectively fight for what you believe in.


About the author

Dean Galvin is someone who believes that something can be done about it. A small town boy who moved to the big city and got clobbered by life. He wants to give you a tool to help you stop the far Left and the far Right from gaining government power to take away our liberties. view profile

Published on October 27, 2019

Published by

20000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Political Science

Reviewed by

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