Interview With The Devil - The Secret To Freedom And Success - Napoleon Hill
About Napoleon Hill:
Napoleon Hill (October 26, 1883 -- November 8, 1970) was an American author in the area of the new thought movement who was one of the earliest producers of the modern genre of personal-success literature. He is widely considered to be one of the great writers on success. His most famous work, Think and Grow Rich (1937), is one of the best-selling books of all time (at the time of Hill's death in 1970, Think and Grow Rich had sold 20 million copies). Hill's works examined the power of personal beliefs, and the role they play in personal success. He became an advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt from 1933 to 1936. "What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve" is one of Hill's hallmark expressions.
Hill considered the turning point in his life to have occurred in the year 1908 with his assignment, as part of a series of articles about famous and successful men, to interview the industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. At the time, Carnegie was one of the most powerful men in the world. Hill discovered that Carnegie believed that the process of success could be outlined in a simple formula that anyone would be able to understand and achieve. Impressed with Hill, Carnegie asked him if he was up to the task of putting together this information, to interview or analyze over 500 successful men and women, many of them millionaires, in order to discover and publish this formula for success.
As part of his research, Hill claimed to have interviewed many of the most successful people of the time in the United States. In the acknowledgments section of his 1928 multi-volume work The Law of Success, Hill listed 45 of those studied by him during the previous twenty years, "the majority of these men at close range, in person", like the three to whom the book set was dedicated, Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, and Edwin C. Barnes, an associate of Thomas Edison. Carnegie had given Hill a letter of introduction to Ford, who introduced Hill to Alexander Graham Bell, Elmer R. Gates, Thomas Edison, and Luther Burbank. According to the publishers, Ralston University Press, endorsements for the publishing of The Law of Success were sent by a number of them, including William H. Taft, Cyrus H. K. Curtis, Thomas Edison, Luther Burbank, E.M. Statler, Edward W. Bok, and John D. Rockefeller.
As a result of Hill's studies via Carnegie's introductions, the Philosophy of Achievement was offered as a formula for rags-to-riches success by Hill and Carnegie, published initially in 1928 as the multi-volume study course The Law of Success. For this first edition, Hill had rewritten his previous 1925 manuscript, also recently released in 2011. The Achievement formula was detailed further and published in home-study courses, including the seventeen-volume "Mental Dynamite" series until 1941.
The secret of achievement was tantalizingly offered to readers of Think and Grow Rich, but Hill felt readers would benefit most if they discovered it for themselves. Although most readers feel that he never explicitly identified this secret, he offers these words about 20 pages into the book: If you truly desire money so keenly that your desire is an obsession, you will have no difficulty in convincing yourself that you will acquire it. The object is to want money, and to be so determined to have it that you convince yourself that you will have it. . . You may as well know, right here, that you can never have riches in great quantities unless you work yourself into a white heat of desire for money, and actually believe you will possess it. However, Napoleon Hill also states at the introduction that the secret that the 'canny, lovable old Scotsman carelessly tossed it into my mind' (Andrew Carnegie) was also the same secret that Manuel L. Quezon (then Resident Commissioner of the Philippine Islands) was inspired by to 'gain freedom for his people, and went on to lead them as its first president.'
He presented the idea of a "Definite Major Purpose" as a challenge to his readers in order to make them ask themselves, "In what do I truly believe?" According to Hill, 98% of people had few or no firm beliefs, and this alone put true success firmly out of their reach.