Have you read "Outwitting the Devil" by Napoleon Hill?

by cvan
32 replies
The back-story on this book is amazing. Hill wrote it in 1938 and when his wife read it, she told him NOT to publish the book until she had passed away. Why? Because the attention that their family would receive may not be good.
Once she died, the book was passed on to Hill's nephew. The Nephew's wife said the same: Do not publish this book until I have passed.

So finally, this book has been published...70+ years of waiting and let me tell you...the book is profound!

Has anyone else read it? What are your thoughts?
#hill #napoleon #outwitting the devil #read
  • Profile picture of the author Top Dog Marketer
    I haven't gotten a chance to read it yet, but I have read the life changing book Law Of Success which was Hill's first work.

    Can you tell me why this new book was so good, without giving away everything? I'm really curious.

    I'm the "Top Dog" when it comes to marketing.

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  • Profile picture of the author thewpguide
    I haven't even heard of it, I loved his Think and Grow Rich book so will definitely get my research head on and have a look at this. Thanks for the heads up on it - definitely sounds like it will be an interesting read!
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  • Profile picture of the author Manny Derek
    Never heard of it. But interested to read this book.
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  • Profile picture of the author rlmzpaulson
    Yes, I read it and wrote a review on it (on amazon). Some may wish to read it as a quick summary...

    This review is from: Outwitting the Devil (Hardcover)
    There are significant new ideas here that are easier to accept with the correct framework.

    Perhaps Hill perspective is that thoughts are the primary reality and the physical world is an out-picturing of thought constrained by Laws of Nature and Spiritual laws of Compensation and others he describes. Withing this model, all is thought, wherein beings are entities of an individual nature. Of these, there are two entities of a dual nature that effect two domains. One domain is your mind where the Devil can work his power by hypnotic suggestion. If you accept these suggestions, a rhythm can form by repetition. This creates drifting habit wherein the ability to reject "suggestions" is reduced to near zero. This is what Hill's Devil says allows his control of 98% of the planet.

    This is a powerful idea, that is, that your thoughts are not always your own but how you choose is 100% yours. That is, of course, if you think authentically, independently, and not on programmed responses to accept bad ideas (drifting on bad suggestions).

    This model is very troubling but any model is mostly useful in terms of its utility. I think it makes a lot of sense in my experience. The implication is that thoughts that "pop" into my head are not of my own making BUT I THINK THEY ARE. And, bad outcomes I excuse since my nature is to hold you accountable but let myself slide. I tend to rationalize and justify my mistakes instead of see them for what they are--bad suggestions accepted and distracting from my purpose. Only I can choose of the ideas presented to me (whatever their source) and my outcomes and character is a result of my choices.

    So where to the other "suggestions" or "ideas that pop" into my mind come from? Is that my authentic timeless self, or some such concept? Freud named parts of self as ID, EGO, and Super EGO. Could the base instincts of ID and the moral compass of Super-EGO somehow be the battling forces?

    Hill says the Devil has the domain of mind via planting of suggestions. He does not own your mind unless you are caught in a pattern of accepting his suggestions. God or Omnipotence is reflected in the Laws of Nature as Emerson has beautifully expounded. I am inclined to believe that. The Devil claims they form a balanced duality of positive and negative or raw short fused base instinct versus a refined longer timescale moral intelligence. The conscious experience of self sits at the EGO aligned with one side or the other at some degree.

    God (perhaps different from what you understand), is manifestation by spiritual and physical Laws of "Nature". The idea "All is Law and All is Love" springs forth. This is to be your guide, look to Nature, to what works, try many things and learn for this is where truth can be found. Experience is here in the pain, sacrifice, hard work, and resulting joy of honest returns.

    The Devil can only access the physical by living through you and only if you accept his suggestions by drifting. If you reject these ideas by filling your cup with your own objectives, he will leave you alone since he must go where you decide and that is no fun.

    He claims to be very entrenched in the physical world through his control of the 98%. Seemingly, his selfish intents to live through your experience have little concern for your well being. Throwing you off balance so you accept suggestions keeps you under his spell where he can play you like a character in a video game. If you make a bad move and die, so be it, and it's off to live through the next victim for his pleasure.

    Such is the nature of the balanced duality of which he claims to be "winning" at our expense. However, God is in control of the physical and the Devil's effects are only felt by influencing the weak to do his pleasure. An honest days work give him no pleasure. A fine meal of fatty meat and sweaty risky sex is a fine treat.

    Does that sound interesting? Does this model help you with really thinking before you act? How about self-discipline and the effects of distractions. Who is really in control?

    For me, this model helps me be stronger.
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  • Profile picture of the author rlmzpaulson
    Took me a while to understand, hypnotic rhythm / law of compensations, November 20, 2011

    This review is from: Outwitting the Devil: The Secret to Freedom and Success (Hardcover)
    This book is much harder to understand than "think and grow rich" which was easy to understand but hard to believe and even harder to master. As many tried and failed, they found it was near impossible to maintain the dominant thought in this age of distractions. It was almost like the world was designed to keep us off balance. Many of our habits were destructive to focus (TV, texting, phone, blogs, DVDs, concerts, video games, shopping) and how rewarding were they compared to our true dreams unrealized. Apparently, our actions showed otherwise and why was that?

    Hill's investigations revealed to him the Law of physical attraction by a dominant (charged emotionally and habitual) thought. This spiritual law of manifestation allowed the transformation of thought into its physical equivalent. Yeah, but most of us can't do it. It was those 1-2% of leaders that could. Why couldn't most of us do it?

    In this book, the devil explains the other half of the Law of Attraction. In the same way a dominant thought can create the physical, the physical environment has an hypnotic rhythm that is working upon your thoughts. You are not separate from your surroundings and in fact are attracted into rhythm with it. You either change your environment OR it will change you. You lock into a cement form when you are attracted to rhythm of dysfunctions that kill your ability to breakout. You are done. It's addiction. Boose, drugs (in all forms), TV, sex, shopping, avoiding "hard" things that scare you or that you dislike. Name it. Overcome it or you will not maintain a dominant thought. You will merge with your environment and be stuck until you die.

    The numbers today show that it is not easy to overcome addictions and to face adversity. Creating a thought world more powerful than the outside world is HARD to do. This is why people say the Secret doesn't work. It does work but just not for you. It works for people that really don't need it. Life is working fine for them. The exact people that are attracted to "creating their ideal reality" are exactly the people addicted to their circumstances, to their environment. They are stuck and they know it at some level. This is why they fork over huge money to recreate the lie of self-help programs. People in self-help people want to be saved and have an environment containing 99.99% of people unwilling or unable to do what it takes. They must risk everything and hold nothing sacred. Saving yourself is a personal journey.

    This self-help environment is acting adversely upon them by their common association. You would think the opposite but NOT if you understand that the environment is a stronger and more consistent attractor than your minds. You think your focused determined emotionally charged mind is working to bring you what you desire. Likely, the opposite is happening. Hypnotic rhythm is systematically lulling you to sleep in the most powerful way.

    Enlightened people seek solitude within their works, always actively serving, and not rallied cheering crowds chanting affirmations for cash. They seek peace in all forms. They reject temptations and distractions. They focus. They work diligently, consistently, provide service, and are concerned equally with the success of others as they are about themselves. They are enablers of greater service.

    They live the golden rule and would rather give than recieve. They accept all that is around them without question and with Loving gratitude even in a mud hole. They just don't wish for riches unless it is to enable a higher purpose. When riches arise unexpectedly, they know it must be actively put into service. Their bank accounts are near zero and capital is working to serve. They work hard and they feel good. Their environment of giving, gives back a rhythm and they feel it. They are the leads in their environments and you will know them by the sweat on their brow and hands always busy. They do not like distractions nor talk about focus. They are learners, doers and not talkers about learning to do.

    The Law of attraction is symmetric. That makes sense that a natural physical and spiritual law acting in one way will act in reverse as well. Also, since birth, Nature has taught you to respect the environment over what you think. In fact, this is done so well, you do not realize thoughts are things and the primary reality. In many cases, those that have mastery don't focus on the law or know about it. They just live in the now actively improving the physical and to think about it is to be distracted and loose it.

    There are no easy solutions with this stuff. Focus on one compelling thing of value to you and others and work like hell on it and don't quit or be tempted. Just do it and make sure it is of effective value to others. When you fail, the seeds of success are planted, try another plan but be busy with it 100%. Now you are attracting blessings back but do not take them as success for they are traps. The law of compensation will reap failure with a seed of success if you take for yourself. The success is within the doing and not the "end". There is no end and life is never a destination even in death.

    To use the law for yourself is pointless for no happiness can be found there. You may only attain riches that you do not value or desire. You may force riches of valuable resources to hoard which disturbs the pond hindering the greater good and the Law acts. The law of compensations forces all players to the rhythm of the environment. The only way to change your environment is to selflessly act in service to others and then the door will open. You cannot force joy of apparent riches to you. You must attract joy to yourself through effective selfless acts. Focus on value that you can provide and you will not want riches, Joy will come and an addiction to effective valued service. The money and riches will then follow but you will not care since your hypnotic rhythm is to serve. Riches in a bank you will come to see as rotting food. The money must flow out to the greatest good. To hoard is to impede Life which cannot be stopped. Mistakes bring failure and a more powerful seed of a greater good. You must see the potential in the seed. The physical world is a teacher of Unity and a keeper of rhythms. The love of money reaps misery which plants the seed of soon to be joyful service which you may or may not water.

    In short, it is very difficult to force your desires by power of thought unless they are not for yourself (or the puffing of ego). We all exist in a pond where everything matters and is interconnected. When you powerfully and consistently do or think something a ripple is sent out and a new rhythm is adjusted. The physical manifestation of that thought must be made to be in harmony with the eternal Law that man tries to reveal. It will always be equalized or balanced in time with everything in constant motion. This is called a rhythm or state of balance in a constantly changing world. Everything has a rhythm of perfection but never perfection itself at any one time. Law of compensation returns from the ripple and inseparable from it a correction and a seed of the opposite occurs to maintain balance. In order for rhythms to occur in a determined action (really a thought as well) or dominant thought, it must repeat with a willful energy or passion. Uncorrelated and scattered one-time events have no power to effect the endless rhythm and constantly changing song of the universe.

    All this can be done but involves the most willful commitment. Watch the mental battle as seen in the movie "Green Lantern". That occurs there, what you will see in the physical world is average unassuming people battling to make their surroundings as peaceful and well working as their hearts. They may push a broom or save a life. Their will is unassuming and draws energy from an infinite source of the human heart where it lives forever.

    The opposite is also occurring where coherent inharmonious(evil) thoughts & acts impress upon the collective forcing their intents. Inseparable from the forcing is the rhythmic corrective law returning balance. All wishes will be granted and all debts will be paid along with the seeds of grace.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tommy Rothmann
      I'm new to warrior forum and only found this post now. So excuse my "belated" response.
      Thanks for the review. Reading "think and grow rich" for the first time but not the original book. The one revised and expanded by Arthur P. Bell. He adds modern day examples of individuals that have applied the principles with astounding results. Ironically these modern day success stories are used as examples in a myriad of other self-help books that promote a particular "way to success". What I get out of each self- help book I choose to read is usually no more than a single thread of fibre that can be weaved in to my expanding soul. I don't expect more than a single thread, I used to but not anymore. And so devouring these books don't take nearly as much time as it used to and I'm very relaxed about whether I actually finish one or not, or pick it up a year later.

      I realized that living is an act of participation with all of life in all of life, not studied from the fringes by occasionally looking over pages of the "next best seller" as the rest of humanity plays in the park
      Speaking of playing in the park, I must say that the hypnotic effect of our environment is a reality. For most of us, the number of distractions are immense and ever increasing. I have found some ways to silence incessant thinking and increase my focus in the midst of this dessert storm of information particles. In these quiet moments of my soul, the overarching impulse that courses through my being is to serve, to become more selfless and aware of my oneness with all that is. Not a oneness born from some theoretical esoteric modality but in a very real and practical sense.

      Here's an example, where I live in South Africa there are more humanitarian needs than any one nation or group of nations for that matter can meet. When I drive up to a traffic light and a young boy looks at me with tears in his eyes in the scorching African sun, pleading for money, food or whatever, I have a choice. My mind usually races with intellectual arguments, cloaked in an egoistic robe of morality about why I should or shouldn't just hand him some money. I'm not sure what my studious stare looks like to him, perhaps he doesn't even notice.
      When the decision is made to help him regardless of the loudness of the internal clamouring choruses, a sense of peace distils on my soul that hushes the crowding thoughts even further. I love to make decisions and act on them, accepting that I will fail and that some things I do will work out spectacularly.

      I have discovered for myself that the ideas for "inspired" action flows more naturally from a quieter mind, so I'm left to wonder, what the source of this inspiration is.
      Any thoughts?
      Suburban Sage (In search of Inspired destiny together)
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  • Profile picture of the author lifesofree
    Thanks a lot for recommending the book. I've just ordered it.
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  • Profile picture of the author chelsean
    Sounds compelling. Thanks for the heads up on the book. I think I'll order it.

    Looking for a house in Arizona? Use a Phoenix Realtor! Have little kids? Check out baby clothes Australia. Businesses should use commercial cleaning nj. Enroll in a coaching certification program!

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  • Profile picture of the author fmnely1
    what a realization of generational transfer nice review from you guys . i will order for my copy
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    • Profile picture of the author Nate D
      I skimmed through this book at the book store....Basically he took his invisible counsler technique to the next level and wrote a book about it. The invisible counsler technique from "Think and Grow Rich" is pretty fun and interesting. I've had some good conversations doing this - and you can take it pretty far if you want.
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  • Profile picture of the author anthonymay
    thanks for the share
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Chicas
    Now I have something to read over my Thanksgiving dinner... hopefully everyone will see the title of the book as they beg me to pass the gravy. =D
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    • Profile picture of the author JoeUK
      Woe no I've never even heard of this one, sounds very interesting I'll have to have a look around for it - thanks for posting
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  • Profile picture of the author WizIMS
    I must read this one



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  • Profile picture of the author lifesofree
    I've started reading it a couple of hours ago (first chapter) and it seems to be a great book at first glance!
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  • Profile picture of the author webtraficomkt
    Thanks for the review! I will definitely buy the book!
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  • Profile picture of the author Sue McDonald
    Thanks for the review. Very interesting to think they waited 70 years to publish it. I will have to get a copy and read it. Thank you for telling me it even existed.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy Lemos
    I hears its a good book. Going to get it soon. Im currently finishing his first book called "Law of Success". Great book too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Maya2066
    Thanks for suggesting this book, I will definitely read it. Something happened to me that I couldn't understand and I think I may find the explanation in this book.

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    • Profile picture of the author Daniel Evans
      I hadn't heard of it, but it's definately going on the "to-do"!

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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    I personally never heard of this book before. What's it about?

    Was it recently published and distributed to book stores?

    The only book I read from Napoleon Hill was his classic think and grow rich. Amazing book which I have read many times over and over and over again.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheDreamerSpot
    I'm in the process of reading it right now and am absolutely addicted to it. It just gets better and better O_O
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  • Profile picture of the author Make Money Ninja
    I read think and grow rich before. Will buy this on amazon nowwwww

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  • Profile picture of the author Jeff Schuman
    Thanks for the post. I have not heard of this Hill book. Like most everyone else I have read "Think and Grow Rich" several times. I will have to look at this. I see it is available on Amazon in paperback, hardback, and 5 cds.
    Jeff Schuman - SEO Blog Writer For Hire! Buy affordable, SEO, quality, MMO niche blog articles. Fast turnaround.
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    • I highly recommend this book. I have read it 5 times now and I keep getting new insights.
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  • Profile picture of the author C G
    One of the best books i have read. I listen the audio book at least once every month.

    Highly recommended.


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  • Profile picture of the author NinjaTech
    Originally Posted by cvan View Post

    The back-story on this book is amazing. Hill wrote it in 1938 and when his wife read it, she told him NOT to publish the book until she had passed away. Why? Because the attention that their family would receive may not be good.
    Once she died, the book was passed on to Hill's nephew. The Nephew's wife said the same: Do not publish this book until I have passed.

    So finally, this book has been published...70+ years of waiting and let me tell you...the book is profound!

    Has anyone else read it? What are your thoughts?
    Yah Outwitting the Devil has totally transformed my life. I read this book after my wife stumbled across it and read it. I I had been reading Napoleon Hill Think and Grow Rich for several years. Then when I came across outwitting the devil it all made sense, things stopped being fuzzy. I had a clear plan of action to become free from all concern. I have listened to the audio file I would say about a hundred times. Then one day I decided to create a Facebook group Freedom From Concern that Facebook group morphed into a podcast Freedom Ninjas and that podcast morphed into a live call Mastermind Freedom From Concern the Mindset Shift. You know what's funny I have my wife to thank for the book and the transformation in my life. Not a mentor not a famous Internet guru not a world-famous speaker- my wife the love of my life was instrumental in showing me outwitting the devil and starting the freedom from concern movement. Stop by and visit my group join us on the calls I would love to have you mastermind live with us. Just search for freedom from concern. You will find me or check out the footer. I love outwitting the devil and I am compelled to share what it has done in my life with every person i meet.
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  • Profile picture of the author allanrsm
    Haven't heard of it but a massive fan of Think and Grow Rich...will definitely keep this new work on the horizon!
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Marquez
    I've read it.

    It's been about 4 years, but as I can remember, it had a big impact on my life. Much like the story of the book not being published, I didn't finish reading it, about a year later, after I had started.

    The last chapter was all that was left.

    When I was compelled to finally finish the book, it was exactly what I needed to hear, exactly when I needed to hear it. One of those revealing moments that gets you to the next level...

    Anyway, just wanted to drop in and say, yes! what an absolutely amazing book! I highly recommend.
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  • Profile picture of the author yesboss
    Thanks for bringing this to my attention. Just finished reading it.

    One of the core messages of the book is that it is fear and ignorance that lead people to self-made prisons, or living hell on earth. The hell is on earth, not in afterlife, and is created by fear. "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

    The only thing we have absolute control over is our own free and independent thought. And therein lies our power. Accurate thought is the remedy. Definiteness of purpose in our thoughts leads to definite actions (habits) which through time leads to physical manifestation of our dominating desires.

    The only constant is change. Nature will not tolerate idleness. You either grow or you decay. Or as the book says, you are either a drifter or a non-drifter.

    READ IT. Highly recommended!
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  • Profile picture of the author SuccesfulIideas
    I have read the book and it is a wonderful, now I listen to it several times! as i listen more i learn something new, its a great a book and it's been hidden for a very long time, if you love the work of napoleon hill you must read the book:

    Succesfulideas: Outwitting the Devil: The Secret to Freedom and Success
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  • Profile picture of the author Larry X
    I thought it was a horror movie though never heard this book before.
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