Book Review: Outwitting the Devil -Napoleon Hill
Outwitting the Devil was written by Napoleon Hill in 1938. Just before WWII. However, it was published until June, 2011, seventy three years later. The story is, that Hill's wife believed it to be too controversial, considering the subject matter, an "interview with The Devil." She believed it would cause a backlash and ruin them. In fact, this is exactly what "The Devil" planned.
Hill conveys his ideas in the ancient greek form of an interview, actually an interrogation, with a singular character, "The Devil," in which the devil must answer truthfully and honestly. Hill presents the conjecture on whether he actually interviewed the devil or not, but states that he takes the devil for what he claims himself to be... not a man with a spiked tail and a forked tongue and horned head... he is "the force of negative energy" in the universe, that makes it's home in the minds of human beings.
The devil lays out how he controls 98% of human beings through negative thought patterns. He induces them to negative thought through many methods like fear of death, fear of poverty, fear of failure, or bribes of pleasures. They then begin to engage in the "habit of drifting," and eventually fall into the trap of "hypnotic rythm," as the devil calls it, where they are permanently locked into their negative mind-patterns. The Devil then uses them as his unwitting servants, or "propagandists," to spread negative thought..
The devil defines drifters vs. non-drifters in a long-winded manner (which I won't go into). But it resonated with me personally to see the ways that I had been, and still am "drifting," and ways that I am not. Here is a quote about the "non-drifter:"
A. 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 exacdy what he wants and is determined
to get it, no matter how long it may take or what price he
If you ask him questions, he gives you direct answers and
never falls back on evasions or resorts to subterfuge.
He extends many favors to others, but accepts favors
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
He never blames others for mistakes no matter if they
deserve the blame.
He used to be known as a go-getter, but in modem 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
The major distinguishing feature of the non-drifter is this:
He has a mind of his own and uses it for all purposes.
Beautiful, no? Very inspiring words.
Some of the cons of this book are that some of the ideas are dated. It was written in 1938, from that perspective. Some of his views on theology and women are slightly odd. However the general concepts are sound. All in all, I believe that this is a must read book for us guys.
The audio version is really cool. Its sounds like a real interview with the devil.
Fuck yeah dude, that's what I have lol. Guy's voice is so deep.
This sounds fucking great. Downloading now thanks
Amazing write-up. I'll have to get this book when I read the three I've already got lined up.