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Success Poems #1 The Success Paradox

Can you unravel the success paradox in Napoleon Hill's favorite poem "Success" By Berton Braley?

Philosophers both ancient and contemporary go to great lengths to create problems they hope that no one can solve. One of their favorites is the paradox.

Simply put, a paradox is a seemingly absurd or self-contradictory statement or proposition that when investigated or explained may prove to be well founded or true.

This will be our goal today: to explore an ancient paradox first applied to physics. Now, I will apply that paradox to success.


By Berton Braley

If you want a thing bad enough To go out and fight for it, Work day and night for it, Give up your time and your peace and your sleep for it If only desire of it Makes you quite mad enough Never to tire of it, Makes you hold all other things tawdry and cheap for it If life seems all empty and useless without it And all that you scheme and you dream is about it, If gladly you'll sweat for it, Fret for it, Plan for it, Lose all your terror of God or man for it, If you'll simply go after that thing that you want, With all your capacity, Strength and sagacity, Faith, hope and confidence, stern pertinacity, If neither cold poverty, famished and gaunt, Nor sickness nor pain Of body or brain Can turn you away from the thing that you want, If dogged and grim you besiege and beset it, You'll get it!


by Edgar Allan Poe

Gaily bedight,

A gallant knight,

In sunshine and in shadow,

Had journeyed long,

Singing a song,