Access the Best on the Web USA history

and future
The Best Blogs on the Web

Turn off TV - click above
Travel Center
Airline tickets - lowest airfares
International Dating
Adults only
Best Dental Plan
Save half or more!
Top casinos online

Elbert Hubbard - Selections

From Love, Life & Work, essays by Elbert Hubbard, Roycroft, 1906:

...Strange evolutions are often witnessed within the life of one individual. For instance, Leo Tolstoy, a great and good man, at one time a sensualist, has now turned ascetic; a common evolution in the lives of the saints. But excellent as this man is, there is yet a grave imperfection in his cosmos which to a degree vitiates the truth he desires to teach: he leaves the element of beauty out of his formula. Not caring for harmony as set forth in color, form and sweet sounds, he is quite willing to deny all others these things which minister to their well-being. There is in most souls a hunger for beauty, just as there is physical hunger. Beauty speaks to their spirits through the senses; but Tolstoy would have your house barren to the verge of hardship. My veneration for Count Tolstoy is profound, yet I mention him here to show the grave danger that lies in allowing any man, even one of the wisest of men, to dictate to us what is best. We ourselves are the better judges. Most of the frightful cruelties inflicted upon men during the past have arisen simply out of a difference of opinion that arose through a difference in temperament. The question is as alive today as it was two thousand years ago - what expression is best? That is, what shall we do to be saved? And concrete absurdity consists in saying that we must all do the same thing. Whether the race will ever grow to a point where men will be willing to leave the matter of life-expression to the individual is a question; but the millennium will never arrive until men cease trying to compel all other men to live after one pattern.

Most people are anxious to do what is best for themselves and least harmful to others. The average man now has intelligence enough: Utopia is not far off, if the self-appointed folk who rule us, and teach us for a consideration, would only be willing to do unto others as they would be done by, that is to say, mind their own business and cease coveting things that belong to other people. War among nations and strife among individuals is a result of the covetous spirit to possess.

A little more patience, a little more charity for all, a little more love; with less bowing down to the past, and a silent ignoring of pretended authority; a brave looking forward to the future, with more self-confidence and more faith in our fellow men, and the race will be ripe for a great burst of life and light. - - - Life and Expression

...Character is the result of two things, mental attitude and the way we spend our time. It is what we think and what we do that makes us what we are. - - - Mental Attitude

... Do this, or if for any reason you should prefer not, then take your choce of these: Get Out, or Get in Line. You have got to do one or the other -- now make your choice. If you work for a man, in heaven's name work for him.

If he pays you wages that supply you your bread and butter, work for him -- speak well of him, think well of him, stand by him and stand by the institution he represents.

I think if I worked for a man, I would work for him. I would not work for him a part of the time, and the rest of the time work against him. I would give an undivided service or none. If put to the pinch, an ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness.

If you must vilify, condemn and eternally disparage, why, resign your position, and then when you are outside, damn to your heart's content. But I pray you, as long as you are a part of an institution, do not condemn it. Not that you will injure the institution -- not that -- but when you disparage a concern of which you are a part, you disparage yourself.

More than that, you are loosening the tendrils that hold you to the institution, and the first high wind that happens along, you will be uprooted and blown away in the blizzard's track -- and probably you will never know why... - - - Get Out or Get in Line

The supreme prayer of my heart is not to be learned, rich, famous, powerful, or "good", but simply to be radiant. I desire to radiate health, cheerfulness, calm courage, and good will. I wish to live without hate, whim, jealousy, envy, fear. I wish to be simple, honest, frank, natural, clean in mind and clean in body, unaffected - as ready to say "I do not know", if it be so, and to meet all men on an absolute equality - to face any obstacle and meet every difficulty unabashed and unafraid.

I wish others to live their lives, too - up to their highest, fullest, and best. To that end I pray that I may never meddle, interfere, dictate, give advice that is not wanted, or assist when my services are not needed. If I can help people, I'll do it by giving them a chance to help themselves; and if I can uplift or inspire, let it be by example, inference, and suggestion, rather than by injunction and dictation. That is to say, I desire to be radiant - to radiate life. - - - A Prayer

"I believe in the Motherhood of God. I believe in the blessed Trinity of Father, Mother, and Child. I believe that God is here, and that we are as near Him now as ever we shall be. I do not believe He started this world a-going and went away and left it to run itself. I believe that we are all sons of God, and that it doth not yet appear what we shall be. I believe the only way we can reach the Kingdom of Heaven is to have the Kingdom of Heaven in our hearts. I believe in freedom - social, economic, domestic, mental, spiritual. I believe in sunshine, fresh air, friendship, calm sleep, beautiful thoughts. I believe in the purifying process of sorrow, and I believe that death is a manifestation of life. I believe the universe is planned for good."- - - Health & Wealth

A few items from The Philistine, 1914, on the eve of the First World War:

Hubbard defined public opinion as "the judgment of the incapable many opposed to that of the discerning few."

On government: "People who do not readily pass under hypnotic control have been known to answer back, in which case they have occasionally been arrested for contumacy and contravention by stocky men in wide-awake hats, who lead the strenuous life. Savages like to go to war; we do not. All we ask is the privilege of attending to our own business. We have work to do, and wish to work while it is called the day. But they will not . . . these demagogues, politicians and rogues . . . they will not leave us alone - these men who insist on governing us and living off our labor. They tax us, eat our substance, conscript us, draft our boys into their wars."

"The human race seemed sure of itself. Its mind was opening . . . art, science, invention, had glorified man - lifted him to the Matterhorn of Highest Hope. Then conceive the inconceivable . . . Realize the unbelievable . . . no romance or heroism in this war. The war will progress from horror to horror, and with it the protest, disgust and anger of the people will deepen. . . . Big business has been to blame for this thing . . . let it not escape this truth - that no longer shall individuals be allowed to thrive through supplying murder machines to the mob."

Elbert Hubbard Bibliography

Elbert Hubbard Home Page

Bigeye Table of Contents and are supported by Florida Reverse Mortgages and by
The Careington Dental Plan with more than 5 million satisfied members - since 1979.