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Smarter Than the Devil or the Fascinating Universe of Napoleon Hill

Dive into the fascinating universe of Napoleon Hill and his book ‘Smarter Than the Devil’! This work was long kept secret by the author’s family but was finally unveiled in 2011. In this book, which takes the form of a dialogue with the Devil himself, Hill shares his reflections on life and how to fully realize oneself. The book is considered captivating, provocative, and stimulating, showing the way to success. The Discovery of a Secret Manuscript: Written in 1938, ‘Smarter Than the Devil’ remained hidden for over 70 years before being revealed in 2011. Napoleon Hill’s wife feared public reactions to this subversive text, which, despite its age, remains relevant today. This captivating narrative explores the lessons learned from studying the most talented individuals and the fears that hinder them.

The Author’s Story

Have you ever wondered how some people manage to achieve their dreams while others remain stuck in mediocrity? How do they push themselves to reach heights of success and happiness? That’s what you’ll discover in Napoleon Hill’s book ‘Think and Grow Rich,’ a classic of personal development literature. ‘The Interview with the Devil’ is a fascinating book that reveals the secrets of success and happiness according to Napoleon Hill, the author of the famous ‘Think and Grow Rich.’

This book is divided into two parts: the first part presents the fundamental principles of Hill’s philosophy, based on faith, will, and action. The second part is an unprecedented dialogue between Hill and the Devil, in which he extracts from the Devil the secrets of his power over human beings and reveals the seven keys to breaking free from his chains.

In the first part of the book, Hill shares his personal journey and the keys that allowed him to overcome obstacles and become a fulfilled person. He explains how to use failures to one’s advantage and how to meet one’s ‘other self,’ an essential step toward realizing one’s full potential.

The ‘other self’ is that part of us that guides us toward our destiny, inspires us, and supports us. It’s our intuition, our inner voice, our guardian angel. To connect with our ‘other self,’ we must develop unwavering faith in our abilities and dreams. We must also listen to our emotions and sensations, as they are the language of our ‘other self.’ Hill provides practical advice for strengthening our faith and self-confidence. He encourages us to repeat positive affirmations, visualize our goals, meditate, pray, seek help from caring and competent individuals, and persist in the face of difficulties without ever giving up.

This book is a source of inspiration and motivation for anyone who wants to achieve their dreams. It shows that anything is possible if you believe in it and take action. It invites you to take control of your destiny and become the master of your life.

The Interview with the Devil

In the second part, Hill engages in a dialogue with the Devil and exposes the fears that hinder humans in their pursuit of happiness. He reveals seven keys to freeing ourselves from our fears and becoming stronger both materially and spiritually. Through this discussion, Hill encourages us to become aware of our true purpose in life and to have the courage to fully realize ourselves.

An Unprecedented Dialogue with the Devil

An unprecedented dialogue with the Devil: The narrative takes the form of an interview between Napoleon Hill and the Devil, in which the author dissects human fears, reveals the seven keys to material and spiritual freedom, and offers insights into the meaning of life.

The Metaphor for Understanding

The author uses this metaphor to help readers understand that success is often hindered by negative thoughts and attitudes, such as fear, self-doubt, procrastination, and many others. By conversing with the Devil, Napoleon Hill aims to shed light on these obstacles and provide strategies to overcome them.

The Strategies

The main strategies proposed by Napoleon Hill to overcome mental and emotional obstacles include cultivating a positive attitude, perseverance, creating a clear and achievable plan, taking calculated risks, focusing on one’s passions, self-confidence, and surrounding oneself with positive individuals.

Positive Attitude

Cultivating a positive attitude is essential for overcoming fears and self-doubt. By focusing on goals and believing in one’s ability to achieve them, it’s possible to replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Perseverance is also crucial for success, as it’s important to continue working hard and pursuing goals even in the face of obstacles and failures.

SMART Goals (Specific, Measurable, Ambitious, Realistic, Timely)

Having a clear and achievable plan is also essential for reaching goals. It’s important to determine the necessary steps to achieve a goal and consistently follow them. However, it’s also important to take calculated risks by rationally analyzing the chances of success.

IKIGAI (Reason for Being)

IKIGAI is a Japanese concept that can help you find your path in life, meaning ‘reason for being.’ It involves discovering what makes you happy, what excites you, and what gives your life purpose. IKIGAI lies at the intersection of four domains: what you love to do, what you’re good at, what the world needs, and what you can be paid for. By exploring these domains, you can discover your true passion and purpose.

But that’s not enough. You also need to cultivate your IKIGAI daily by setting clear and achievable goals, surrounding yourself with positive and inspiring people, taking care of your physical and mental health, and focusing on your passions to maintain motivation and enthusiasm. Believing in your ability to succeed is essential for overcoming mental and emotional obstacles. Hill recommends focusing on your strengths and recalling your past successes.

Detoxify Your Circle

Finally, the people around us have a major influence on our mindset and motivation. Therefore, it’s important to surround yourself with positive people and distance yourself from negative individuals.

Key Takeaways

In summary, Napoleon Hill’s parable invites us to reflect on our own obstacles and develop strategies to overcome them. These strategies include cultivating a positive attitude, perseverance, creating a clear and achievable plan, taking calculated risks, focusing on one’s passions, self-confidence, and surrounding oneself with positive people.

The seven secret principles for spiritual, mental, and physical freedom

Hill lays out seven secret principles for achieving spiritual, mental, and physical freedom. In this section, we will detail these seven principles.

1.    Self-Determination  

   The first principle is the clear definition of one’s life purpose. According to Hill, most people spend their lives pursuing vague or unimportant goals. Therefore, it is crucial to precisely determine one’s goals and commit to achieving them. As stated in “Outwitting the Devil,” Hill believes that “any human being who has the capacity to be definite in their major purpose and plans can cause life to hand over whatever is asked.”

   However, two major impediments exist to the principle of definite purpose. The first is a lack of self-determination, which can develop as early as childhood when parents and adults transmit their fears to the child, limiting their thinking potential.

      Negative Impulses  

   Negative impulses such as envy, hatred, greed, lust, and revenge can be major obstacles to achieving a definite purpose and success. The way adults can transmit their own fears and limitations to children aligns with certain theories of psychological development.

      Parental Responsibility  

   It is therefore important for parents and adults surrounding children to instill positive values and help them develop a clear and positive vision of their lives. This can include encouraging creativity, practicing gratitude, fostering empathy and compassion, and teaching self-discipline and self-control.

Adults play a crucial role in shaping the minds of children by helping them develop a positive and determined attitude to achieve their life goals.

2.    Self-Mastery  

   The second principle is self-mastery. Hill argues that most people are dominated by their thoughts and emotions rather than controlling them. Therefore, it is important to develop self-mastery by learning to control one’s thoughts and emotions.

3.    Practice of Self-Discipline  

   The third principle is the practice of self-discipline. Hill contends that most people tend to avoid difficult or uncomfortable tasks, preferring activities that provide immediate pleasure. Therefore, developing self-discipline is important to overcome obstacles and achieve one’s goals.

4.    The Pursuit of Knowledge  

   The fourth principle is the pursuit of knowledge. Hill asserts that most people do not seek to acquire new knowledge and are content with their past experiences. Therefore, it is essential to constantly seek education and learn new things.

5.    Perseverance  

   The fifth principle is perseverance. Hill argues that most people give up too easily when faced with obstacles or failures. Therefore, it is important to persevere and continue working hard to achieve one’s goals.

6.    Decision-Making  

   The sixth principle is decision-making. Hill claims that most people tend to hesitate or procrastinate before making important decisions. Therefore, it is important to make decisions quickly and with confidence.

7.    Faith  

   The seventh and final principle is faith. Hill asserts that faith is essential for achieving spiritual, mental, and physical freedom. It involves believing in oneself and in something greater than oneself.

In summary, these seven secret principles proposed by Napoleon Hill in “Outwitting the Devil” offer a practical guide to achieving spiritual, mental, and physical freedom. By developing self-mastery, self-discipline, perseverance, decisiveness, a thirst for knowledge, faith, and by clearly defining life goals, it is possible to overcome the mental and emotional obstacles that often hinder success.


This book is a treasure trove for those seeking to understand the mechanisms that govern their lives and to fulfill themselves completely. Using an original theatrical metaphor, Napoleon Hill delivers a profound and timeless reflection on the human condition. A true source of inspiration and motivation for those who want to realize their dreams and achieve their goals, this book teaches us how to overcome our fears, doubts, and weaknesses, how to develop a positive attitude, how to persevere in the face of obstacles, how to establish an action plan, how to take calculated risks, how to focus on our passions, how to have self-confidence, and how to surround ourselves with positive people. It also invites us to reflect on the meaning of our lives and discover our true purpose.

“Outwitting the Devil” is a book that makes us reflect on ourselves and the world around us. It shows us that success and happiness depend not on external circumstances but on our mindset and choices. It reminds us that we all have the power within us to change our destiny and become masters of our lives. So, do not hesitate any longer and dive into “Outwitting the Devil” to discover the secrets of success and happiness!

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