Blue seeks to identify and consider the true nature of our conflicts with the world, other people, and with ourselves. Its central premise is that the underlying cause of our pain and frustrations is our inability to accept that we have no real effective power to change and direct the world around us in a manner that fulfills our expectations, meets our demands, and ensures our security. It proposes that we live in a fully formed and detailed personal vision of the world constructed by our requirements and fears, and that this architecture comes into constant conflict with that of the world we actually experience. This may not be a unique thesis, but particular emphasis is placed on revealing this essential conflict, and subjecting each point of resentment and disagreement to rigorous analysis in a comprehensive written inventory.

The manuscript is 85,000 divided into three major sections of five chapters each. Each section has a title – Living, Learning, and Loving – and each quirky chapter title has a descriptive byline, for instance; Chapter nine “Fish – the cause of our complicity.” The tone is non-polemic, conversational and questioning. The book makes no reference to transcendental spirituality or poetic imagery, proposes no pseudo-scientific theories, and is neither theological nor dogmatic. It places a premium on careful thought and detailed analysis explained in clear and simple language, and presents its ideas and principles as suggestions for consideration based on practical observation and honest examination. It makes liberal use of examples and anecdotes, and though serious in its thoroughness the prose is often humorous and sometimes irreverent.

Blue may be appropriately described as a Self-Help or Self-Improvement book, and appeal to readers attracted to the work of such authors as Eckhart Tolle and Viktor Frankl. The book’s dedication to structured thought and detailed analysis, simple terminology and clear analogy may however suggest a closer affinity with books on practical psychology, popular philosophy, or 12 step approaches to personal problem solving. Because of this, its tone is aspirational rather than inspirational. Its principle aim is the resolution of troubling issues and resentments. Its method is based on rigorous self-analysis and investigation to determine the true source and nature of our challenges. Its objective is not the success, empowerment, or achievement as suggested by the works of Stephen Covey or Tony Robbins, but the seeking of a thoughtful and positive reassessment of our relationship with the world, with others, and with ourselves.

Read all posts in the archive.

Advertisements