“All the stars are on the inside…”
- Blue Oyster Cult, Veteran of the Psychic Wars
Shortly after writing a piece for Modern Mythology on the somewhat obscured psychical basis of Napoleon Hill’s famous 1937 work on the philosophy of success, Think and Grow Rich, I noticed that he had written another book the following year which was held from publication until 2011. Whatever surprise I may have had at the contents of Think and Grow Rich was minuscule compared to my surprise at finding his follow up book contained nothing less than a sustained dialogue with an entity that he identified as the Devil.
You can imagine why this might have been considered a bit controversial in 1938, and why his family withheld the publication of Outwitting the Devil, even after his death, until the book could be properly framed to avoid too much shock. The books contents are a fascinating look at the depth and social conscience of Hill’s philosophy, which often get’s shoved into the self help category, but I must save any reflections on that topic for another article.
My inquiries into the reception of Hill’s philosophy within the business world lead to a fortuitous connection to Matthew Joyce, who was kind enough to respond to a HARO request that I sent out, and our conversations via email and over the phone opened up an entirely different understanding of the nature of intuition and the mind.