Outwitting The Devil

By: Napolean Hill

Outwitting The Devil, originally written in the 1930's was hidden for almost a century due to its controversial nature, finally being published in 2013. This book contains the conversation between Napolean Hill and the Devil during which Hill asks the devil about all his tricks to keep people 'Drifting' (Living an unfulfilled life) and then forces the devil to give answers to people to escape his control. The book is written in a Q&A format and is EXTREMELY valid for the world we are living in today. It contains techniques that one can implement take control of their life, information about how we are programmed by our parents, education system & religious leaders along with solutions to all these faulty systems in our world.

 

Highly recommended book for pretty much everyone as this book really shifts your perspective about extremely important topics. Please share this summary with your friends & loved ones so you can help them awaken to their true potential.

8 Key Ideas

  1. The state of mind known as faith apparently opens to one the medium of a sixth sense through which one may communicate with sources of power and information far surpassing any available through the five physical senses.

  2. Question: Tell me of the most common habits by which you control the minds of people. 

    • Answer: That is one of my cleverest tricks: I enter the minds of people through thoughts which they believe to be their own. Those most useful to me are fear, superstition, avarice, greed, lust, revenge, anger, vanity, and plain laziness. Through one or more of these, I can enter any mind, at any age, but I get my best results when I take charge of a mind while it is young, before its owner has learned how to close any of these nine doors. Then I can set up habits which keep the doors ajar forever.

  3. The first sign of a non-drifter is this: He is always engaged in doing something definite, through some well-organized plan which is definite. He has a major goal in life toward which he is always working, and many minor goals, all of which lead toward his central scheme. The tone of his voice, the quickness of his step, the sparkle in his eyes, the quickness of his decisions clearly mark him as a person who knows exactly what he wants and is determined to get it, no matter how long it may take or what price he must pay. If you ask him questions, he gives you direct answers and never falls back on evasions or resorts to subterfuge. He extends many favours to others, but accepts favours sparingly or not at all. He will be found up front whether he is playing a game or fighting a war. If he does not know the answers he will say so frankly. He has a good memory; never offers an alibi for his shortcomings. He never blames others for his mistakes no matter if they deserve the blame. He used to be known as a go-getter, but in modern times he is called a go-giver. You will find him running the biggest business in town, living on the best street, driving the best automobile, and making his presence felt wherever he happens to be. He is an inspiration to all who come into contact with his mind. The major distinguishing feature of the non-drifter is this: He has a mind of his own and uses it for all purposes.

  4. “The person who moves with definiteness recognizes the difference between temporary defeat and failure. When plans fail he substitutes others but he does not change his purpose. He perseveres.”

  5. Question: What can I do to ensure avoiding the habit of drifting?

    • Answer:

      • 1. Do your own thinking on all occasions. The fact that human beings are given complete control over nothing save the power to think their own thoughts is laden with significance.

      • 2. Decide definitely what you want from life; then create a plan for attaining it and be willing to sacrifice everything else, if necessary, rather than accept permanent defeat.

      • 3. Analyze temporary defeat, no matter of what nature or cause, and extract from it the seed of an equivalent advantage.

      • 4. Be willing to render useful service equivalent to the value of all material things you demand of life, and render the service first.

      • 5. Recognize that your brain is a receiving set that can be attuned to receive communications from the universal storehouse of Infinite Intelligence, to help you transmute your desires into their physical equivalent.

      • 6. Recognize that your greatest asset is time, the only thing except for the power of thought which you own outright, and the one thing which can be shaped into whatever material things you want. Budget your time so none of it is wasted.

      • 7. Recognize the truth that fear generally is a filler with which the Devil occupies the unused portion of your mind. It is only a state of mind which you can control by filling the space it occupies with faith in your ability to make life provide you with whatever you demand of it.

      • 8. When you pray, do not beg! Demand what you want and insist upon getting exactly that, with no substitutes.

      • 9. Recognize that life is a cruel taskmaster and that either you master it or it masters you. There is no half-way or compromising point. Never accept from life anything you do not want. If that which you do not want is temporarily forced upon you, you can refuse, in your own mind, to accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want.

      • 10. Lastly, remember that your dominating thoughts attract, through a definite law of nature, by the shortest and most convenient route, their physical counterpart. Be careful what your thoughts dwell upon.

  6. Devil says “ Anything which teaches people to examine facts and coordinate them into definite plans through accurate thinking is hard on my profession. If this thirst for definite knowledge now spreading over the world keeps up, my business will be shot to pieces within the next few centuries. I thrive on ignorance, superstition, intolerance, and fear, but I cannot stand up under definite knowledge properly organized into definite plans in the minds of people who think for themselves”
  7. Question: Name some of the common forms of sin. 

    • Answer: It is a sin to overeat because that leads to ill health and misery. It is a sin to over-indulge in sex because that breaks down one’s willpower and leads to the habit of drifting. It is a sin to permit one’s mind to be dominated by negative thoughts of envy, greed, fear, hatred, intolerance, vanity, self-pity, or discouragement, because these states of mind lead to the habit of drifting. It is a sin to cheat, lie, and steal, because these habits destroy self-respect, subdue one’s conscience, and lead to unhappiness. It is a sin to remain in ignorance because that leads to poverty and loss of self-reliance. It is a sin to accept from life anything one does not want because that indicates an unpardonable neglect to use the mind.

  8. One’s intimate associates should be chosen with as much care as one chooses the food with which he feeds his body, with the object always of associating with people whose dominating thoughts are positive, friendly, and harmonious.

Notes

 

Foreword

  • This book, even though written in 1938, was actually meant to be published today . . . meant to rock our society today! It was intended to provide answers during this uncertain economic and spiritual time. It provides the keys for each of us to outwit the Devil in our own lives. It shows us how to chart a course for success and to add value to the world around us through the process.

  • Dr Hill’s goal was to communicate clearly a philosophy and practice of individual achievement that would stimulate lasting happiness. His inner knower guided him to find his own life’s rainbow.

  • Like Hill, you are here to master your fears and not let them master you, to live passionately and with purpose, to decide what you want to be, do, and have, and to make it so.

 

Chapter One: My first meeting with Andrew Carnegie

  • The schools and colleges teach practically everything except the principles of individual achievement. They require young men and women to spend from four to eight years acquiring abstract knowledge but do not teach them what to do with this knowledge after they get it.

  • “The world is in need of a practical, understandable philosophy of achievement, organized from the factual knowledge gained from the experience of men and women in the great university of life.

  • As inconsistent as it may seem, you will learn more about how to succeed from the failures than you will from the so-called successes. They will teach you what not to do.

  • Learn this lesson, once and forever, that you will find happiness only by helping others to find it!

  • By recognizing that you have a choice and reacting positively to your fears, you can permanently change your life for the better.

  • “If you want to be a success, you must first dress the part.”

  • “Above everything else, get this fact clearly fixed in your mind, that your ‘other self’ will not do your work for you; it will only guide you intelligently in achieving for yourself the objects of your desires.

 

Chapter Two: A new world is revealed to me 

  • The “other self” follows no precedents, recognizes no limitations, and always finds a way to accomplish desired ends! It may meet with temporary defeat, but not with permanent failure.

  • there is a solution for every legitimate problem, no matter how difficult the problem may seem.

  • I have also discovered that there comes with every experience of temporary defeat, and every failure and every form of adversity, the seed of an equivalent benefit.

  • Before. I used to go to prayer only when facing difficulty. Now I go to prayer before difficulty overtakes me, when possible. I now pray, not for more of this world’s goods and greater blessings, but to be worthy of that which I already have.

  • Force yourself to think of my family and friends and the blessings they have brought to your life. It is the quickest path up and puts your temporary setbacks into perspective.

  • Every individual has the power to change his or her material or financial status by first changing the nature of his or her beliefs.

  • Nothing within reason is impossible to the man who knows and relies on his “other self.” Whatever man believes to be true has a way of becoming true.

  • The state of mind known as faith apparently opens to one the medium of a sixth sense through which one may communicate with sources of power and information far surpassing any available through the five physical senses.

  • A prayer is a released thought, sometimes expressed in audible words and at other times expressed silently. I have observed by experience that a silent prayer is as efficacious as the one which is expressed in words.

 

Chapter Three: A strange interview with the devil 

  • The six most effective fears are the fear of poverty, criticism, ill health, loss of love, old age, and death.

  • Question: Who are your greatest enemies on earth, Your Majesty?  

    • Answer: All who inspire people to think and act on their own initiative are my enemies. Such men as Socrates, Confucius, Voltaire, Emerson, Thomas Paine, and Abraham Lincoln. And you are not doing me any good either.

  • It is financing campaigns for better government and helping to wipe out dishonesty in politics. It is helping to set higher standards in business practice and encouraging businessmen to conduct business by the Golden Rule, and that is not doing my cause any good.

  • Any habit which weakens one’s willpower invites a flock of its relatives to move in and take possession of the mind. The cigarette habit not only lowers the power of resistance and discourages persistence, but it invites looseness in other human relationships.

 

Chapter Four: Drifting with the devil

  • A drifter is one who permits himself to be influenced and controlled by circumstances outside of his own mind. He would rather let me occupy his mind and do his thinking than go to the trouble of thinking for himself. A drifter is one who accepts whatever life throws in his way without making a protest or putting up a fight. He doesn’t know what he wants from life and spends all of his time getting just that. A drifter has lots of opinions, but they are not his own.

  • Question: Tell me of the most common habits by which you control the minds of people. 

    • Answer: That is one of my cleverest tricks: I enter the minds of people through thoughts which they believe to be their own. Those most useful to me are fear, superstition, avarice, greed, lust, revenge, anger, vanity, and plain laziness. Through one or more of these, I can enter any mind, at any age, but I get my best results when I take charge of a mind while it is young, before its owner has learned how to close any of these nine doors. Then I can set up habits which keep the doors ajar forever.

  • Question: I am catching on to your methods. Now let us go back to the habit of drifting. Tell us all about that habit since you say it is your cleverest trick in controlling the minds of people. 

    • Answer: As I said before, I start people drifting during their youth. I induce them to drift through school without knowing what occupation they wish to follow in life. Here I catch the majority of people. Habits are related. Drift in one direction and soon you will be drifting in all directions. I also use environmental habits to give me a definite grip on my victims.

  • Question: How do parents help religious leaders destroy their children’s power to think for themselves? I never heard of such a monstrosity! 

    • Answer: I accomplish this through a very clever trick. I cause the parents to teach their children to believe as the parents do in connection with religion, politics, marriage, and other important subjects. In this way, as you can see, when I gain control of the mind of a person I can easily perpetuate the control by causing that person to help me fasten it upon the minds of his offspring.

  • Devil about people: When they begin to think in constructive terms of faith, courage, hope, and definiteness of purpose, they immediately become allies of my opposition and are therefore lost to me.

  • Question: I do not see how the schoolteachers help you in this damnable work. 

    • Answer: Schoolteachers help me gain control of the minds of children not so much by what they teach the children as because of what they do not teach them. The entire public school system is so administered that it helps my cause by teaching children almost everything except how to use their own minds and think independently. I live in fear that someday some courageous person will reverse the present system of school teaching and deal my cause a death blow by allowing the students to become the instructors, using those who now serve as teachers only as guides to help the children establish ways and means of developing their own minds from within. 

  • Methods used to get people to ‘drift’:

    • Health: I cause most people to eat too much food and the wrong sort of food. This leads to indigestion and destroys the power of accurate thought.

    • Marriage: I cause men and women to drift into marriage without plan or purpose designed to convert the relationship into harmony.

    • Occupation: I teach people to become drifters by causing them to drift out of school into the first job they can find, with no definite aim or purpose except to make a living.

    • Savings: I cause people to spend freely and to save sparingly or not at all until I take complete control of them through their fear of poverty.

    • Environment: I cause people to drift into inharmonious and unpleasant environments in the home, in their places of occupation, in their relationship with relatives and acquaintances, and to remain there until I claim them through the habit of drifting.

    • Dominating Thoughts: I cause people to drift into the habit of thinking negative thoughts. This leads to negative acts and involves people in controversies and fills their minds with fears, thus paving the way for me to enter and control their minds.

  • Can you think of examples in your own life when laziness and indifference led you off your path to success? When an opportunity slipped through your fingers because you were too slow to seize it in time?

  • The first sign of a non-drifter is this: He is always engaged in doing something definite, through some well-organized plan which is definite. He has a major goal in life toward which he is always working, and many minor goals, all of which lead toward his central scheme. The tone of his voice, the quickness of his step, the sparkle in his eyes, the quickness of his decisions clearly mark him as a person who knows exactly what he wants and is determined to get it, no matter how long it may take or what price he must pay. If you ask him questions, he gives you direct answers and never falls back to evasions or resorts to subterfuge. He extends many favors to others, but accepts favours sparingly or not at all. He will be found up front whether he is playing a game or fighting a war. If he does not know the answers he will say so frankly. He has a good memory; never offers an alibi for his shortcomings. He never blames others for his mistakes no matter if they deserve the blame. He used to be known as a go-getter, but in modern times he is called a go-giver. You will find him running the biggest business in town, living on the best street, driving the best automobile, and making his presence felt wherever he happens to be. He is an inspiration to all who come into contact with his mind. The major distinguishing feature of the non-drifter is this: He has a mind of his own and uses it for all purposes.

 

Chapter Five: The confession continues 

  • Question: So it is your business to induce people to fail whenever you can. Is that correct? 

    • Answer: You have it right. Failure breaks down one’s morale, destroys self-confidence, subdues enthusiasm, dulls imagination, and drives away definiteness of purpose. Without these qualities, no one can permanently succeed in any undertaking. The world has produced thousands of inventors with ability superior to that of the late Thomas A. Edison. But these men have never been heard of, while the name of Edison will go marching on because Edison converted failure into a stepping stone to achievement while the others used it as an alibi for not producing results.The “capacity to surmount failure without being discouraged”

  • The “capacity to surmount failure without being discouraged” is “the chief asset of every man who attains outstanding success in any calling.”

  • Question: Give me a simple description of what you mean by the term “propaganda.” Just what is it and how does it work? I wish to know particularly how you cause people to drift through the use of this devilish device. 

    • Answer: Propaganda is any device, plan, or method by which people can be influenced without knowing that they are being influenced or the source of the influence. Propaganda is used in business for the purpose of discouraging competition. Employers use it to gain an advantage over their employees. The employees retaliate by using it to gain an advantage over their employers. In fact, it is used so universally and through such a smooth and beautiful streamlined technique that it looks harmless even when it is detected.

  • Question: What do you use as a bribe?

    • Answer:

      • Love 

      •  The thirst for sex expression 

      •  Covetousness for money

      • The obsessive desire to gain something for nothing—gambling 

      •  Vanity in women, egotism in men

      • • Desire to be the master of others 

      •  Desire for intoxicants and narcotics 

      • Desire for self-expression through words and deeds 

      •  Desire to imitate others 

      •  Desire for perpetuation of life after death 

      •  Desire to be a hero or heroine 

      •  Desire for physical food

  • If the victim is a male I can usually snare him through his sex appetite. Over-indulgence in sex starts more men to drifting toward failure than all other causes combined.

  • Question: What can I do to ensure avoiding the habit of drifting?

    • Answer:

      • 1. Do your own thinking on all occasions. The fact that human beings are given complete control over nothing save the power to think their own thoughts is laden with significance.

      • 2. Decide definitely what you want from life; then create a plan for attaining it and be willing to sacrifice everything else, if necessary, rather than accept permanent defeat.

      • 3. Analyze temporary defeat, no matter of what nature or cause, and extract from it the seed of an equivalent advantage.

      • 4. Be willing to render useful service equivalent to the value of all material things you demand of life, and render the service first.

      • 5. Recognize that your brain is a receiving set that can be attuned to receive communications from the universal storehouse of Infinite Intelligence, to help you transmute your desires into their physical equivalent.

      • 6. Recognize that your greatest asset is time, the only thing except for the power of thought which you own outright, and the one thing which can be shaped into whatever material things you want. Budget your time so none of it is wasted.

      • 7. Recognize the truth that fear generally is a filler with which the Devil occupies the unused portion of your mind. It is only a state of mind which you can control by filling the space it occupies with faith in your ability to make life provide you with whatever you demand of it.

      • 8. When you pray, do not beg! Demand what you want and insist upon getting exactly that, with no substitutes.

      • 9. Recognize that life is a cruel taskmaster and that either you master it or it masters you. There is no half-way or compromising point. Never accept from life anything you do not want. If that which you do not want is temporarily forced upon you, you can refuse, in your own mind, to accept it and it will make way for the thing you do want.

      • 10. Lastly, remember that your dominating thoughts attract, through a definite law of nature, by the shortest and most convenient route, their physical counterpart. Be careful what your thoughts dwell upon.

  • Be definite in everything you do and never leave unfinished thoughts in the mind. Form the habit of reaching definite decisions on all subjects.

  • Question: What would happen if a thinker did appear? 

    • Answer: You ask me what would happen? I’ll tell you what would happen. People would learn the greatest of all truths—that the time they spend in fearing something would, if reversed, give them all they want in the material world and save them from me after death. Isn’t that worth thinking about?

  • Question: What is keeping such a thinker from appearing in the world? 

    • Answer: Fear of criticism! It may interest you to know that the fear of criticism is the only effective weapon I have with which to whip you. If you were not afraid to publish this confession after you wring it from me, I would lose my earthly kingdom.

 

Chapter 7: Seeds of fear 

  • Question: Why don’t you take over the churches and use them outright in your cause? 

    • Answer: Do you think I am a fool? Who would keep alive the fear of the Devil if I subdued the churches? Who would serve as a decoy to attract the attention of people while I manipulate their minds if I did not have some agency through which to sow the seeds of fear and doubt? The cleverest thing I do is to use the allies of my opposition to keep the fear of hell burning in the minds of people. As long as people fear something, no matter what, I will keep a grip on them

 

Chapter 8: Definiteness of purpose 

  • Says the Devil: “Once any person hesitates, procrastinates, or becomes indefinite about anything, he is just one step removed from my control.”

  • Question: I understand from what you say that people who gain power must harden their emotions, master fear, and subdue love. Is that correct? 

    • Answer: People who gain and maintain power must become definite in all their thoughts and all their deeds. If that is what you call hard, then they must become hard.

  • “The person who moves with definiteness recognizes the difference between temporary defeat and failure. When plans fail he substitutes others but he does not change his purpose. He perseveres.”

 

Chapter 9 : Education & Religion

  • “A life that is lived with the fullness of peace of mind, contentment, and happiness always divests itself of everything it does not want.”

  • “Anyone who submits to annoyance by things he does not want is not definite. He is a drifter.”

  • “The first duty of every human being is to himself. Every person owes himself the duty of finding how to live a full and happy life.”

  • Devil says “ Anything which teaches people to examine facts and coordinate them into definite plans through accurate thinking is hard on my profession. If this thirst for definite knowledge now spreading over the world keeps up, my business will be shot to pieces within the next few centuries. I thrive on ignorance, superstition, intolerance, and fear, but I cannot stand up under definite knowledge properly organized into definite plans in the minds of people who think for themselves”

  • Says the Devil: “Children are sent to school to make credits and to learn how to memorize, not to learn what they want of life.”

  • Question: I want to know two things about this system. First, what is the major weakness of the system? Second, how can this weakness be eliminated? The floor is yours again! Please stick to the question and stop trying to decoy me into the discussion of deep, abstract subjects. That’s definite, is it not? 

    • Answer: You leave me no choice but that of a direct answer. To begin with, the public school system approaches the subject of education from the wrong angle. The school system endeavours to teach children to memorize facts, instead of teaching them how to use their own minds. Another major weakness of the school system is that it does not establish in the minds of children either the importance of definiteness of purpose or make any attempt to teach youths how to be definite about anything.

  • Steps to fix the current education system: 

    • Reverse the present system by giving children the privilege of leading in their school work instead of following orthodox rules designed only to impart abstract knowledge.

    • Let instructors serve as students and let the students serve as instructors. 

    • As far as possible, organize all school work into definite methods through which the student can learn by doing, and direct the class work so that every student engages in some form of practical labour connected with the daily problems of life. 

    • Ideas are the beginning of all human achievement. Teach all students how to recognize practical ideas that may be of benefit in helping them acquire whatever they demand of life. 

    • Teach the students how to budget and use time, and above all teach the truth that time is the greatest asset available to human beings and the cheapest. 

    • Teach the student the basic motives by which all people are influenced and show how to use these motives in acquiring the necessities and the luxuries of life. 

    • Teach children what to eat, how much to eat, and what is the relationship between proper eating and sound health. 

    • Teach children the true nature and function of the emotion of sex, and above all, teach them that it can be transmuted into a driving force capable of lifting one to great heights of achievement.

    • Teach children to be definite in all things, beginning with the choice of a definite major purpose in life! 

    • Teach children the nature of and possibilities for good and evil in the principle of habit, using as illustrations with which to dramatize the subject the everyday experiences of children and adults. 

    • Teach children how habits become fixed through the law of hypnotic rhythm, and influence them to adopt, while in the lower grades, habits that will lead to independent thought! 

    • Teach children the difference between temporary defeat and failure, and show them how to search for the seed of an equivalent advantage which comes with every defeat. 

    • Teach children to express their own thoughts fearlessly and to accept or reject, at will, all ideas of others, reserving to themselves, always, the privilege of relying upon their own judgment. 

    • Teach children to reach decisions promptly and to change them, if at all, slowly and with reluctance, and never without a definite reason. 

    • Teach children that the human brain is the instrument with which one receives, from the great storehouse of nature, the energy which is specialized into definite thoughts; that the brain does not think, but serves as an instrument for the interpretation of stimuli which cause thought.

    •  Teach children the value of harmony in their own minds and that this is attainable only through self-control.

    • Teach children the nature and the value of self-control.

    •  Teach children that there is a law of increasing returns which can be and should be put into operation, as a matter of habit, by rendering always more service and better service than is expected of them. 

    • Teach children the true nature of the Golden Rule, and above all show them that through the operation of this principle, everything they do to and for another, they do also to and for themselves. 

    • Teach children not to have opinions unless they are formed from facts or beliefs which may reasonably be accepted as facts. 

    • Teach children that cigarettes, liquor, narcotics, and overindulgence in sex destroy the power of will and lead to the habit of drifting. Do not forbid these evils—just explain them. 

    • Teach children the danger of believing anything merely because their parents, religious instructors, or someone else says it is so. 

    • Teach children to face facts, whether they are pleasant or unpleasant, without resorting to subterfuge or offering alibis. Teach
    • children to encourage the use of their sixth sense through which ideas present themselves in their minds from unknown sources, and to examine all such ideas carefully. 

    • Teach children the full import of the law of compensation as it was interpreted by Ralph Waldo Emerson, and show them how the law works in the small, everyday affairs of life.

    • Teach children that definiteness of purpose, backed by definite plans persistently and continuously applied, is the most efficacious form of prayer available to human beings.

    •  Teach children that the space they occupy in the world is measured definitely by the quality and quantity of useful service they render the world. 

    • Teach children there is no problem which does not have an appropriate solution and that the solution often may be found in the circumstance creating the problem.

    •  Teach children that their only real limitations are those which they set up or permit others to establish in their own minds. 

    • Teach them that man can achieve whatever man can conceive and believe! 

    • Teach children that all schoolhouses and all textbooks are elementary implements which may be helpful in the development of their minds, but that the only school of real value is the great University of Life wherein one has the privilege of learning from experience. 

    • Teach children to be true to themselves at all times and, since they cannot please everybody, therefore to do a good job of pleasing themselves.

  • The quickest and surest way to force practical ideas into the public schools is to first introduce the ideas through private schools and establish such a demand for their use that public school officials will be compelled to employ them.

  • Question: Should any other changes be made in the public school system? 

    • Answer: Yes, many. Among other changes needed in all public school programs is the addition of a complete course of training in the psychology of harmonious negotiation between people. All children should be taught how to sell their way through life with the minimum amount of friction. Every public school should teach the principles of individual achievement through which one may attain a position of financial independence. Classes should be abolished altogether. They should be replaced by the roundtable or conference system such as businessmen employ. All students should receive individual instruction and guidance in connection with subjects which cannot be properly taught in groups. Every school should have an auxiliary group of instructors consisting of business and professional people, scientists, artists, engineers, and newspapermen, each of whom would impart to all the students a practical working knowledge of his own profession, business, or occupation. This instruction should be conducted through the conference system, to save the time of the instructors.

  • Question: Name some of the common forms of sin. 

    • Answer: It is a sin to overeat because that leads to ill health and misery. It is a sin to over-indulge in sex because that breaks down one’s willpower and leads to the habit of drifting. It is a sin to permit one’s mind to be dominated by negative thoughts of envy, greed, fear, hatred, intolerance, vanity, self-pity, or discouragement because these states of mind lead to the habit of drifting. It is a sin to cheat, lie, and steal, because these habits destroy self-respect, subdue one’s conscience, and lead to unhappiness. It is a sin to remain in ignorance because that leads to poverty and loss of self-reliance. It is a sin to accept from life anything one does not want because that indicates an unpardonable neglect to use the mind.

 

Chapter 10: Self Discipline

  • “The person who is not a master of himself can never be master of others.”

  • A Controlled sex supplies the magnetic force that attracts people to one another. 

    • It is the most important factor of a pleasing personality. 

    • It gives quality to the tone of voice and enables one to convey through the voice any feeling desired. 

    • It serves, as nothing else can serve, to give motive-power to one’s desires.

    •  It keeps the nervous system charged with the energy needed to carry on the work of maintaining the body. 

    • It sharpens the imagination and enables one to create useful ideas.

    •  It gives quickness and definiteness to one’s physical and mental movements. 

    • It gives one persistence and perseverance in the pursuit of one’s major purpose in life.

    •  It is a great antidote for all fear. 

    • It gives one immunity against discouragement.

    •  It helps to master laziness and procrastination.

    •  It gives one physical and mental endurance while undergoing any form of opposition or defeat.

    • It gives one the fighting qualities necessary under all circumstances for self-defence.

  • Question: Why do so many people indulge in the habit of expressing uninvited opinions? 

    • Answer: The habit is one way of expressing egotism and vanity. The desire for self-expression is inborn in people. The motive behind the habit is to attract the attention of others and to impress them favourably. Actually, it has just the opposite effect. When the self-invited speaker attracts attention, it usually is unfavourable.

 

Chapter 11: Learning from adversity 

  • “Failure is a state of mind; therefore, it is something an individual can control until he neglects to exercise this privilege.”

  • “The proper relationship is one that brings to all connected with it, or affected by it, some form of benefit.”

  • Question: How can improper relationships be corrected? 

    • Answer: By change of mind of the person causing the improper relationship, or by changing the persons to the relationship. Some minds harmonize naturally while others just as naturally clash. Successful human relationships, to endure as such, must be formed of minds that naturally harmonize, quite aside from the question of having common interests as a means of bringing them into harmony.

  • “Life gives no one immunity against adversity, but life gives to everyone the power of positive thought, which is sufficient to master all circumstances of adversity and convert them into benefits.”

 

Chapter 12: Environment, Time, Harmony & Caution

  • One’s intimate associates should be chosen with as much care as one chooses the food with which he feeds his body, with the object always of associating with people whose dominating thoughts are positive, friendly, and harmonious.

  • Question: What effective procedure may one follow in establishing an environment most helpful in developing and maintaining positive thought-habits?

    •  Answer: The most effective of all environments is that which may be created by a friendly alliance of a group of people who will obligate themselves to assist one another in achieving the object of some definite purpose. This sort of an alliance is known as a Master Mind. Through its operation, one may associate himself with carefully chosen individuals each of whom brings to the alliance some knowledge, experience, education, plan, or idea suited to his needs in carrying out the object of his definite purpose. The most successful leaders in all walks of life avail themselves of this sort of made-to-order environmental. Outstanding achievement is impossible without the friendly cooperation of others. Stating the truth in another way, successful people must control their environment, thereby ensuring themselves against the influence of a negative environment.

  • Question: What of people whose duty to relatives makes it impossible for them to avoid the influence of a negative environment? 

    • Answer: No human being owes another any degree of duty which robs him of his privilege of building his thought-habits in a positive environment. On the other hand, every human being is duty bound to himself to remove from his environment every influence which even remotely tends to develop negative thought-habits.

  • “People are not born with wisdom, but they are born with the capacity to think, and they may, through the lapse of time, think their way into wisdom.”

  • Question: What is wisdom? 

    • Answer: Wisdom is the ability to relate yourself to nature’s laws so as to make them serve you, and the ability to relate yourself to other people so as to gain their harmonious, willing cooperation in helping you to make life yield whatever you demand of it.

  • Question: I am beginning to see why successful business leaders are so careful in the choice of their business associates. Men who succeed in any calling usually establish their own environment by surrounding themselves with people who think and act in terms of success. Is that the idea? 

    • Answer: That is the idea exactly. Observe, with profit, that the one thing all successful men insist upon is harmony among their business associates. Another trait of successful people is that they move with definiteness of purpose and insist upon their associates doing the same. Understand these two truths and you understand the major difference between a Henry Ford and a day labourer.

  • The drifter always moves without exercising caution. He acts first and thinks later, if at all. He does not choose his friends. He drifts along and allows people to attach themselves to him on their own terms.

  • Question: Isn’t that method of choosing associates selfish? 

    • Answer: It is sensible and leads to self-determination. It is the desire of every normal person to find material success and happiness. Nothing contributes more to one’s success and happiness than carefully chosen associates. Caution in the selection of associates becomes, therefore, the duty of every person who wishes to become happy and successful.

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"Curiosity is the electric arc for a life bright with joy and vibrancy"

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© 2020 Arjan Sahni