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Title: Happiness as Found in Forethought Minus Fearthought
Author: Fletcher, Horace
Language: English
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        Thirteenth thousand. 462 pp.

        TRUE LIVING. Forty-Eighth thousand.
        310 pp.

        ECONOMIC NUTRITION. Fifteenth
        thousand. 344 pp.

        FEARTHOUGHT. Fourteenth thousand.
        251 pp.

        Sixth thousand. 270 pp.



Forethought minus Fearthought



_Fellow American Association for the Advancement of Science_



    COPYRIGHT, 1898, BY


  INTRODUCTION,                                             7

  HYPOTHESIS,                                              29

  THEORY,                                                  38

  PREFATORY DEFINITIONS,                                   43

  THE VALUE OF SIMILE,                                     63

  ANALYSIS OF FEAR,                                        69

  BALEFUL EFFECTS OF FEAR,                                 78

  HOW TO ELIMINATE FEAR,                                   89

  HOW TO CURE SPECIAL FORMS OF FEAR,                      100

  THE NOW-FIELD,                                          109

  PERTINENT PAGES,                                        117


  THE IMPOTENCE OF PAIN,                                  153

  UNHAPPY UNLESS MISERABLE,                               160

  THOU SHALT NOT STRIKE A WOMAN,                          169

  THE POINT-OF-VIEW,                                      177

  DON'T BE A SEWER,                                       187

  CALL SUSPICION A LIAR,                                  190

  I CAN'T _Not_ DO IT,                                    192

  A MILLION TO ONE ON THE UNEXPECTED,                     198

  LOVE CANNOT BE QUALIFIED,                               203

  LAST SOMETIMES FIRST,                                   211

  A BEGINNING AND NOT AN END,                             217

  APPENDIX A--DR. WM. H. HOLCOMB,                         223

  APPENDIX B--GEORGE KENNAN,                              242

  EXPLANATION OF THE A. B. C. SERIES,                     253




"Happiness" was written in answer to many questions elicited by the
publication of "Menticulture."

The "Introduction" is not material to the subject except to show the
sources of the suggestions relative to profitable living contained in
the two books.

The vital truths underlying the philosophy of life can be intelligently
stated in a few hundred words, both as regards the proper cultivation
of the body, or physical equipment, and as regards the cultivation
of the mind, so that they may do the best work of which they are
capable. False example and false teaching, however, have so impressed
habits of weakness on the body and the mind that the chief aim of
curative suggestion should be to disabuse. That is, to cause people to
discard bad habits of thinking and doing in order that normal, healthy
tendencies of action and of thought may take their place.

The difficulty of the task undertaken by any student and advocate of
reform is not the intelligent statement of the simple truth, but the
discovery and refutation of a complication of errors which have assumed
the reality of truth. Simile and illustration, some logic and much
ridicule, are among the weapons that have been effective in combating
old habits of wrong thinking, but it is impossible to say which
argument will fit a particular case.

Each of the illustrations used in this book has been the means of
curing some one person of some phase of fearthought, and together they
have released many from that dread enemy of health and happiness called

The normal condition of Nature is healthy growth--evolution or
progression--and Man's chief function in assisting her is first the
removal of weeds, or other deterrents to the natural process, and
afterwards the maintaining of quarantine against their return.

_True Happiness is the Evidence and Fruit of Conscious Usefulness._

The wider the opportunity for usefulness the greater and keener the
happiness resulting therefrom. Consciousness of _being_ one's best and
_doing_ one's best, however, regardless of scope, is the only way to
unalloyed happiness, and to the accomplishment of the highest ideals.
There can be no more miserable, sorry and harrowing condition than
that called "Indifference."

The separating of fearthought from forethought is not alone valuable
because of the personal comfort of being fearless, but it is especially
useful in that the energy made possible by the divorce is available in
assisting others to be strong and helpful to themselves and to each

If attention is once directed to the pulling of weeds, to the removal
of deterrents, to the eradication of the germs of disorder, the pursuit
will become most fascinating, owing to the quick and happy response of
Nature in her willingness to "Do the rest."

One of the marvels revealed by study of the question of the possibility
of a Perfect Social Quarantine, having for its aim a protection that
will not permit any child _to escape care_, is the comparatively small
areas of the propagating centers in which are bred the germs of social

This subject is treated in a book, now in press, called "That Last
Waif; or, Social Quarantine."

The same insignificance of origin applies to individual, moral and
physical deterrents to happiness which afflict otherwise healthy men
and women. The _tap-roots_ of all unhappiness are not formidable in the
light of present knowledge.

Whoever is less than keenly happy is the victim of errors or illusions
whose germs are easy to kill when found. It is the especial object
of this book to help those who are suffering unhappiness to find the
tap-roots of their troubles.

          Auditorium Annex,
    Chicago, September 5th, 1898.



How to be happy is the one desire common to all humanity.

How to be happier is a better statement, for there is no one so
miserable but has some degree of happiness at times--enjoys some
moments when he forgets to be unhappy, and looks with appreciation,
even if with only dull and bleared appreciation, upon the things that
are always beautiful and joyful and free.

In highly civilized life there is everything to encourage, and there
should be nothing to prevent, happiness.

The normal condition of man in civilized life is that of happiness.

So great, and so greatly increasing, has been the acceleration of
progress, that the possibility of unrestrained and unfettered
happiness has come to us in advance of our being prepared to accept the
freedom of it, owing, mainly, no doubt, to the weight of traditions
under the habit of which we are prone to struggle long after the
conditions that gave birth to the traditions have ceased to exist.

The experience of the world has revealed, and is constantly revealing,
simple expedients applicable to every possible combination of
evils--except the evil of perverse ignorance--the use of which will
insure the success of honest and reasonable aims, no matter how
unfavorable the equipment and environment have been or are at the
present time.

In a singularly adventurous career I have passed through many of the
conditions in which discomfort, fear and unhappiness breed, including
the direst straits to which life can be exposed, and have also been
possessed, at different times, of the means to comfort and happiness
that broad opportunity, keen appreciation and affluence are supposed to

I have shared the occupations and sympathies of persons of many
different nationalities and of every degree of opportunity and
intelligence; in torrid, temperate and frigid climes; in the Americas,
in Africa, in Europe, in Asia, and in the far-off islands of distant
seas; on shipboard and on the farm; in the mine and in the factory; in
the camp and on the commons; in the arts of war and in the pursuits of
peace; in the country cross-roads school-house and in the university;
in service and in command--in all of which change it was possible only
to serve apprenticeships, however, for in such variety of occupation
no great accomplishment could develop, except the accomplishment of
variety itself; but, at the same time, it was not possible for any
of the occupations to become stale to criticism, and the ability to
analyze, in the light of comparison, is the natural result and the
impelling motive in these essays.

I have pushed ways through tangled chaparral, led by hopes of
discovering precious metals; and have chopped out roads in the jungle,
allured by the excitement of the chase and the spirit of adventure. I
have observed nature in the vastness of her wild domains; in the calm
and in the terror of the mighty deep; in the harmonious quiet of rural
cultivation, and in the supreme picturesqueness of rugged mountain
landscapes, studded about, here and there, with golden-roofed temples
and cloistered parks. I have not only seen nature with appreciative
eye when she has displayed her million moods and when she has taken on
myriad aspects, but I have tried to interpret her in terms of line and
color in famous studios in Europe, under the advice of world-honored
masters of the art.

The numerous occupations engaged in were, in many cases, used as
necessary means to desired ends. While I have enjoyed making _le grand
tour_ as a "globe trotter," I have also had to "work my way" at times,
and in "working my way" have had to undertake occupations leading
that "way." So successful have I been in finding means or excuses for
travel, that among my intimates the saying is current that if I "took
it into my head" to want to go to either of the poles, I would engage
in a business that would make it _necessary_ for me to go there, thus
conserving my respect for duty and my desire for travel at the same

I once sought and secured a place on the staff of one of the great
American daily journals in order to gain access to famous studios in
Europe and America, and to become acquainted with the personality of
great artists who had become inaccessible to anyone except plutocratic
buyers of works of art, intimate friends and critics. This was while
I was studying art with a view to learning some of the secrets of its
inspiration in practice, and thus journalism served a useful purpose,
as well as satisfied a burning curiosity. In this connection I will
say that I have since been able, directly and indirectly, to create
appreciation that has led to the purchase of works of art in which very
large sums of money have been involved, so that I cannot be charged
with imposture upon a profession which I respect to the point of
reverence for its mission in holding a "true mirror up to nature" and
in teaching us to appreciate the subtle beauties that nature shows in
all of her aspects, but which become commonplace to the many without
the assistance of art.

The Japanese have a proverb which declares that "once seeing is better
than an hundred times telling about," and this good proverb has
been the guiding star of my roamings, and has suggested practical
participation in some of my occupations. My first attempt to see the
antipodes was not successful. It did not have the necessary parental
sanction, and I was _brought back_ before I had measured very much
longitude and latitude; but the determination shown in the attempt
indicated so strong a tendency that it led to promise of assistance and
permission to travel as a reward for certain accomplishments in study
that were considered to be impossible, as judged by former efforts, but
which became surprisingly easy to the boy who saw a way to the other
side of the world in the task.

I spent my sixteenth birthday on the Island of Java, and saw Japan and
China at the most interesting periods of their recent history--Japan,
in Feudal Times, before any of the changes that have made her the last
and greatest wonder of the world; and China, at the close of the
Taiping rebellion, wherein more than thirty millions of persons lost
their lives, and about which there hovered a lawlessness the like of
which the world has not witnessed elsewhere.

Chance and restless change have thrown me into companionship with
the most elemental of human beings; and have also led me to the
acquaintance, and into the affections of the wisest and loveliest of
men and women--the rarest blossoms of our generation. Opportunity has
found me available for the command of a crew of Cantonese pirates, on
a Chinese lorcha, at a time when piracy was a common occupation in the
China Sea; and for the mismanagement of a French Grand Opera Company,
when no one else was foolish enough to undertake it.

The foregoing are but glimpses of the opportunities for observation
out of which I draw my deductions relative to profitable living.
Four complete trips around the world--two of them before the time
of ocean steamship lines and continental railroads; thirty-six trips
across the American Continent by various rail, water and stage routes;
sixteen voyages across the Pacific Ocean, and many across the Atlantic;
intermittent periods of residence in many different countries of
Europe, in China, in India, in Japan and in different localities in the
Americas; as well as visits to parts remote from the lines of travel,
such as South Africa, Yucatan and the mountain regions of Mexico
and Central America, that are the type of all of the South American
countries; and all of which residences and visits have been chosen
at times of greatest interest in each locality; in response to the
invitation of the Spirit-of-Adventure by which I have been led--these,
together with no less than thirty-eight distinct occupations, embrace
the sum of my opportunities.

Fortune has always been kind to me when I have trusted her; when my
aims and ambitions were worthy, and when I have been sufficiently
appreciative and grateful for the things I already possessed to merit
and invite continued favors; but, she has always passed me by whenever
I have doubted her goodness or questioned her intentions. And so
consistent has been the course of Fortune, as viewed in the retrospect,
that I can assert, with all the assurance of firm belief, that "Unto
him who hath (appreciation and gratitude) shall be given; but unto him
who hath not (appreciation and gratitude) shall be taken away even that
which he hath."

Until I began to collect my remembrances into groups, form them into
classes for review and deduct from them suggestions for profitable
living, I had thought that my chronic restlessness was aimless as
measured by the common estimate of usefulness; but the sympathy
aroused by the publication of my little volume--first, privately
printed,--_Menticulture, or the A-B-C of True Living_--revealed the
possibility of utilizing my varied experiences and observations to
good advantage in calling attention to uses-of-energy, points-of-view,
habits-of-thought and habits-of-action, that made for happiness in some
persons in some parts of the world, while they were entirely unknown to
others as well fitted to enjoy them.

I was led to serious study of the causes and effects of happiness and
unhappiness by observations of the pitiable neglect of the science
of menticulture, (which is the science of fundamental means), and
the science of happiness (which is the science of ultimate desirable
ends), in materially civilized communities, and by persons who have
mastered, and are already possessed of, the physical means to comfort
and happiness. This neglect is not surprising when we reflect that all
available time and all available thought have been excitedly employed
in developing material, physical _means_, to the exclusion of the
thought of cultivating the end; to the harnessing and training of the
forces of Nature, to the exclusion of planning for their best uses; but
it will be surprising if, however, in the near future, the ends are
not scientifically cultivated, now that the fundamental as well as the
physical means are understood, and the leisure to apply them is secured.

More than forty years of observation, and upwards of three years of
study, analysis and arrangement with a fixed purpose, have enabled
me to suggest changes of attitude towards the problems of life that
have not failed to bring more or less strength and happiness to
all who have adopted them, as attested by thousands of written and
verbal communications and by report. This is literally true, and the
statement of it is warranted by the merit of the results, removed from
any personality in connection with it.

The underlying cause of all weakness and unhappiness in Man, heredity
and environment to the contrary notwithstanding, has always been, and
is still, _weak habit-of-thought_. This is proven by the observed
instances in which _strong habit-of-thought_ has invariably made its
masters superior to heredity, and to environment, and to illness,
and to weakness of all kinds, and has redeemed them from non-success
and misery, to the enjoyment of success, honor and happiness. It has
also been proven that none are so ill-favored as to be exempt from
regeneration by the influence of optimistic thinking, and none so
plain, nor even so ugly, as judged by the world's standards of beauty,
but that the radiance of pure thought will make them more beautiful
than their brothers of nobler mien and more symmetrical physique, but
whose thoughts are poisoned by fear and by selfishness.

Happiness is not dependent upon wealth, and wealth does not necessarily
bring happiness, but both are dependent upon _good-habit-of-thought_;
for _good-habit-of-thought_ develops _appreciation_, which is
the measure of all wealth, and _appreciation_ leads to the
_habit-of-feeling_ and the _habit-of-action_ which produce happiness.

Notwithstanding the words of Jesus of Nazareth, by which one-half of
the world's inhabitants are supposed to be governed; notwithstanding
the admonitions of the other great teachers to whom the other half
of humanity turn for counsel; notwithstanding the lessons taught
by all of nature's processes of growth, especially the teachings
of later evolution; fear--fear of death, fear of disaster, fear of
non-attainment, fear of non-preferment, and fear of the things that
never happen as feared, and the anger and the worry growing out
of these fears--have been looked upon as afflictions necessary to
humanity, repressible only during life, and eradicable only at the
change called death.

Early theology wrestled with conditions wherein it was thought
necessary to use the whip of fear as well as the attraction of love to
incline men to religion. Modern theology teaches the religion of love
alone, but it has not yet sufficiently denounced the former teaching
of fears, perhaps in the interest of consistency or because of filial
respect, inasmuch as its parents once put the label of _truth_ upon
the religion of fear. Science also has taught, and still continues to
teach, the potency of the _crowding-out_ stimulant in growth, without
proclaiming a line where attraction became the stronger motive in
civilization--an intangible line already far astern in the wake of
present progress.

Fear has had its uses in the evolutionary process, and seems to
constitute the whole of forethought, as instinct seems to constitute
the whole of intelligence in most animals, but that it should remain
any part of the mental equipment of human civilized life is an
absurdity. There are, undoubtedly, human beings that are still so
nearly animal that fear alone will restrain them from wrong-doing,
or stimulate them (or, rather, _push_ them) to peaceful and useful
living, but none such will read this book, and neither you nor I should
be burdened by their limitations or necessities. We have passed the
point where we need to be _pushed_; or, if we have not, we are ashamed
to confess it, thereby acknowledging that it is unnecessary; and are
within the atmosphere of appreciation and attraction where fear and
its expressions have no proper place, and where the toleration of
fear beclouds not only our own clear vision, but also the vision of
those who are still below us in the scale of intelligence, to whom,
as beacon-lighters on the heights above them, we owe the influence of
right example.

I have made especial study of the reports of the Society for Psychical
Research, the book entitled "Fear," by Prof. Angelo Mosso, of Turin,
Italy, and the contributions to the _American Journal of Psychology_
by President G. Stanley Hall, of Clarke University, Worcester,
Massachusetts; Dr. Colin A. Scott, Professor of Psychology and Child
Study at Cook County Normal School, Chicago, Illinois; and others who
are devoting particular attention to the causes and effects of fears in
children; together with the after-effect of early fears upon persons
when they are fully grown. The claim of these students is that the
consideration of the future that constitutes _forethought_ is a mixture
of hope, faith and fear, the sum of which is the stimulant to action
and progress, hope and faith being the civilized or divine motives,
and fear being the animal motive. My own experience and observations
corroborate this contention, but I find that the fear element of
forethought is _not_ stimulating to the more civilized persons, to
whom duty and attraction are the natural motives of stimulation, but
is weakening and deterrent. As soon as it becomes unnecessary, fear
becomes a positive deterrent, and should be entirely removed, as dead
flesh is removed from living tissue. I have also demonstrated, beyond
the possibility of doubt, that _the fear element can be eliminated_ out
of forethought _as soon as it becomes evident that it is unnecessary,
separable and eliminable_, and that _energy_ and _desire_ for
progress and growth _are beautifully stimulated as the result of its

To assist in the analysis of fear, and in the denunciation of
its expressions, I have coined the word "_fearthought_" to stand
for the unprofitable element of forethought, and have defined
that variously-interpreted word "worry" as _fearthought, in
contradistinction to forethought_. I have also defined "fearthought" as
the _self-imposed_ or _self-permitted_ suggestion of _inferiority_, in
order to place it where it really belongs, in the category of harmful,
unnecessary, and, therefore, not-respectable things.

Darwin and Spencer and other biologists have asserted that if primitive
man had not been urged by fear of discomfort he would have sat upon
a stone, naked, near the roots or the herbs that served to appease
his hunger--if it also happened to be near to a spring where he could
quench his thirst--until he died; and that fear has been the impelling
motive in the progress of the race. This was undoubtedly true up to a
certain point, but, like many of the laws of _ye olden tyme_, is not
applicable to the present nor to us.

There is now sufficient protection vouchsafed by forethought, and
sufficient attraction furnished by affection and duty, to lead the van
in the pursuit of progress, and to set an example that will be its own
torch-bearer in guiding the trend of thought and of action.

When the motto, "Fearlessness," becomes embroidered upon the banners of
all of our religious and other fraternal organizations; when "Freedom
from Fear" becomes the slogan of Reform, and when Appreciation, Love
and Altruism are admitted to the councils of men, then, and only then,
will famine end, selfishness fade, strikes become unnecessary, misery
depart, and Happiness become enthroned as the ruler of a joyously
industrious and universally prosperous people.

Increase is prodigal, and accumulation is already prodigious, so that
it is no longer a question of physical means, but a question of wise
distribution and adjustment, to accomplish all that society requires
to insure it unremitting happiness.

Churches there are, clubs there are, lodges there are, guilds there
are, and many other fraternal organizations whose aims are practically
the same, but whose members are attracted together into separate
groups by sympathies of traditions, race, occupations or general
trend-of-thought. It would be a useless iconoclasm to separate from
these or to attempt to dismember them. They are all good organizations,
wherein they conserve the principles of brotherhood and promote
practical altruism; and are only imperfect wherein they tolerate
slavery to the fears, slavery to wealth, slavery to the harmful
conventions, and slavery to the antagonisms, intolerances and other
evil passions that prevent economic co-operation, harmony and happiness.

The contention of this book is that, with means already secured, there
is a way to individual happiness, _even under existing conditions_;
and also, that the present acceleration of progress, and certain
already accomplished tests of possible industrial and economic reform,
coupled with an optimism that has for its motto, "All _can be_, and,
therefore, _shall be_ well," not only promise, but assure, to mankind,
in a not remote future, equal opportunities for securing happiness by
means altogether honest and altruistic.

To _all_ who will follow me through this volume, I promise to show
ways and signs that will assist the weak to become strong, the poor to
become rich in appreciation of their opportunities, and the rich to
better enjoy their good fortune without impoverishing others to do so.
My special desire is to enlist general aid in eradicating deterrents to
growth, and in the acceleration of progress.


The object of Life is Growth.

Harmony is the condition favorable and necessary to growth.

Harmony is the normal condition of Nature, as proven by the unfailing
and immediate response of growth to its influence.

Harmonic conditions are created by the removal of deterrents to growth.

Mind is the first essential in the growth of Man. A healthy mind
insures a healthy body, and a rational cultivation of the mind cannot
fail to result in the attainment of the highest ideals.

All of the processes of Nature are consistent, and Man and Mind are no
exception to the rule regulating the growth of other things, except
that their functions as chief assistants in evolution are unique, and,
therefore, involve greater responsibility.

Unselfishness is necessary to the harmonic condition in Man, and
service to fellow-man is essential to his growth.

Happiness is the evidence and fruit of Growth.

There can be no real happiness except in Growth.

Acts are thoughts materialized; or--thoughts realized.

Forethought is an essential aid to Growth.

Fearthought is the cause of all deterrents to growth in Man.

Forethought minus Fearthought is the ideal Mind Equipment.

Fearthought serves no useful purpose; neither is it a necessary
infliction of intelligent, civilized manhood or womanhood.

       *       *       *       *       *

Culture is necessary to the best growth.

Mind-culture, or _menticulture_, is the most important of all
the divisions of culture; for, out of Mind thoughts spring, and
accomplishments grow; but it has been the last to receive the same
scientific and reasonable attention that the other cultures have
received, and had not even been given a distinctive name until
_Menticulture_ was published.

In Agriculture and in Horticulture, plants that seem to have no
profitable nor agreeable use, but are deterrent to the growth of useful
plants, are denominated "weeds," and are not allowed to retain root
in the same soil; animals and other living and moving things that
are not serviceable, and can not be domesticated, are exterminated
from civilized environment; the air that Man breathes is cleared of
poisonous malaria by draining the swamps in which the bad air forms;
and friction is minimized in machines, in order that the energy applied
to them may meet with least resistance, and suffer the least waste.
But no such care is commonly given to the mind.

Fearthought is the element of friction, as expressed in anger; it is
the predatory element, as expressed in waste of energy--the result of
worry; and it is also the weed element, as shown by the uselessness of
it in any form. It is, however, permitted to encumber, muddy and prey
upon divinely ordained forethought, as weeds encumber good soil, as
mud clouds pure water, and as savage and venomous things prey upon the
comfort and life of animals useful to Man, and even upon Man himself.

Man's place in the process of evolution is that of assistant only. Man
selects, arranges, brings together, separates, waters, fertilizes,
waits upon and otherwise cultivates Nature; but he has not been able to
add one cell to growth; neither has he succeeded in drawing an atom of
color from the sunlight and in infusing it into the sap of any growing

By Man's attention in removing the deterrents, the skimpy little wild
flower that grows upon the hillsides of China, that I gathered when
I was a boy--of less importance than the common field daisy--has
become the royal chrysanthemum of the Flower Shows; by Man's care in
the breeding, feeding and training of the primitive horse described
by Professor Marsh, the almost-human Kentucky thoroughbred--the
"Black Beauty" of our pride--has been evolved; and the clumsy effort
of the first inventor of steam applied to machinery has become the
wonderful quadruple-expansion engine of the present, by the harmonizing
adjustment of parts, and the reduction of friction to the point of
noiseless efficiency, through the genius of invention.

Mind is the great machine behind all other machines and out of which
all accomplishment comes. Fearthought and what grows out of it, under
the class names of anger and worry, are like rust and sand in the
journals, and wear out the bearings of the machine. They are also like
the impurities in water that cause foaming in a boiler and prevent the
accumulation of energy. They are productive of nothing but wear and
waste, _wear and waste_, as long as they are permitted to encumber the
splendid man-machine and its source of power.

The creative--the growing part--of Nature never fails to do her part
if the deterrents to growth are removed. What she does for the growth
of plants and of animals, and for the creation of power from the use
of her forces called steam and electricity, she will also do for the
growth and development of the mind of man. If fearthought and its
various expressions are eradicated; or, more correctly speaking,
are not sought and nursed, as they always are, nothing can prevent
Growth and Service and Happiness from occupying their own; and if the
carbonic-acid-gas of passion is kept out of the mental atmosphere, a
vitalized, altruistic and spiritualized energy will take its place.
_Good comes to whatever is prepared for it._

It is an easy matter to separate fearthought from forethought if it is
known that they are separable; not by suppression, nor by process of
gradual repression; because, as long as a spark of fearthought remains,
any excitement or draft of surprise may revive the flame to destructive
proportions; but by absolute eradication,--determination not to suffer,
nor permit, nor tolerate.

The method of eradication is, by the way, the method that is easier
than not, as soon as conviction of the possibility of it is nursed into
a belief.

_Effective methods are always easy methods._

Repression acknowledges, and therefore strengthens, the evil to be
repressed, is never-ending and altogether ineffectual.

Eradication is the simple method of ceasing to import or admit evil
counsel or report, and is the only effective method in menticulture.

       *       *       *       *       *

While the future is the field in which growth must take place, the now
or, rather, the immediate-next-future, is the _only_ time for action.
Are you possessed of fearthought, or anger, or worry, or suspicion,
or jealousy, or envy, or malice, or indifference at this moment? No!
You cannot be, for two distinct thoughts cannot occupy the mind at
the same time, and your thought is occupied with the subject matter
of this hypothesis. The next time you have any of these poisons you
will have to import them afresh in response to the invitation of so
mean a liar as Suspicion, or at the command of so silly a coward as
Fear. Habit-of-thought-of-evil--_the devil_--will return to you for the
usual easy conquest, but newly-acquired knowledge of his impotency to
harm can aid Determination to resist him until Habit-of-Thought is no
longer Bad-Habit-of-Thought and will, therefore, no longer assist in
the materialization of the spook. And then, and _only_ then, will you
be free--free to grow, eager to serve, and altogether happy.

All time--all eternity--is made up of a succession of _nows_. If
you are free in the present _now_, you may more easily be free from
temptation in the succeeding _nows_ until emancipation shall be
complete and the very atmosphere of your freedom shall exorcise all
evil before it can come near enough to attract your consciousness.

You are free this moment; you can be free in the succeeding moments;
_you can be free forever_! IT IS EASIER THAN NOT!


The perfect man is the harmonious man.

Perfection in man is attained when he is _doing his best_.

Symmetry of face or of form, quality of voice, or strength of mind
or muscle at birth are the responsibility of the Creator and of

The birth of the body of man is accomplished when it attains
consciousness of its physical requirements.

The birth of the soul of man is accomplished when he attains
consciousness of what is good, of what his functions and duties are
relative to his own best growth, and also relative to his uses and
duties as a member of society.

Man is not fully born until his mind is conscious of his body and
conscious of his soul, and knows the functions and duties of each
relative to the best growth.

Until man is fully born, as described above, the responsibility of his
perfection or imperfection rests with his teachers and their teachings.

Everything that man is conscious of is his teacher.

You are the teacher of every person who sees or is otherwise conscious
of you or of your example.

It is unmanly, and especially unchristian, not to seek the greatest
possible enlightenment relative to the functions and duties in growth,
not only for your own sake, but as an example for others; and, being
enlightened, not to do all possible to assist growth.

Whoever reads and assents to the above, takes upon himself the
responsibility of his future growth, and will be respectable or
not-respectable insofar as he seeks enlightenment and assists growth,
or neglects to seek enlightenment and thereby retards growth.

Happiness, the evidence, fruit and reward of growth, rests in
self-respect first, and, incidentally, in the measure of respect held
by others.

No one is respectable who is not _doing his best_.

When a man finds fault with the material with which he has been
furnished--with his form, with his face, with his mind, with his
muscle, with his equipment of wealth, or other means or tools of
growth, at the time of his being fully born, he puts blame upon, and
thereby blasphemes, his Creator, as well as discredits his progenitors.

Whoever reads, and assents to, the foregoing is fully born, in that he
has learned and now _knows what is best_. The question then is: "What
will he do with it?"

In highly-civilized life it is _not-respectable not to be fully born_.

The fully-born is _not doing his best_, and is therefore
_not-respectable when he suffers himself to retain or cultivate the

The fully-born is _not doing his best_, and therefore is
_not-respectable, when he entertains and nurses worry_.

The fully-born is _doing his worst when he allows himself to be angry_.

The fully-born is unmanly, especially unchristian and altogether
not-respectable when he is not doing his best, and is always a subject
for pity, and frequently a subject for contempt, when he is doing his

The fully-born-and-entirely-respectable individual knows that
fearthought is an unprofitable element of forethought, knows that it
can be eliminated from the habit-of-feeling by persistent, intelligent
habit-of-thought, and, knowing this, prepares the field of his mind for
unhampered growth by eradicating all of the expressions of fearthought,
as well as all other deterrents to growth.

The fully-born-and-entirely-respectable individual is the one to
whom come health, strength, memory, inspiration, love, preferment,
altruistic impulses, and the appreciation necessary to find the
greatest enjoyment in them all.

The fully-born-and-entirely-respectable individual needs not symmetry
of form nor beauty of face nor accumulation of wealth to make him
happy, for the light from within will give grace to his form, reflect
beauty from his face, and attract all of the things that constitute

The fully-born-and-entirely-respectable condition is the condition
that is easier than not, pleasanter than any, and in which only true
happiness dwells.

Out of the fully-born-and-entirely-respectable habit-of-being
and habit-of-thinking, nursed within our professedly-altruistic
organizations, will the impulse spring which will so shape conditions
that unhappiness can no longer exist, except as the result of


Much misunderstanding arises from the various interpretations of the
meaning of terms. So different are the interpretations given to some
words, that a large part of the dictionaries is taken up with synonyms
whose varied applications are nearly as wide apart as the limits of the
greatest misunderstanding.

Many of these different applications of words are the result of
corruptions of the original meaning, but they are none the less
misleading, and furnish an excuse for agreeing on specific definitions.

As an example of corrupt uses given to words that should be held to
convey only a sacred meaning, take the word "love," as promiscuously
applied, for instance. It should be removed from all selfishness,
and attach only to such holy application as that implied by the
expression, "God is Love." In its application to individuals, as in
mother-love, child-love, love between husband and wife, or between
brothers, it should only have spiritual significance, unalloyed by any
suggestion of liking, approval, desire, or lust; and should even extend
its mantle to spread alike over all created things.

Love had already been so corrupted in its uses in the time
of Comte, that he was impelled to coin a new word to express
unselfishness between brother-men, and hence gave the word
"altruism"--(other-self)--to the world.

"Altruism," also, in its turn, has suffered by contact with the
selfish habit-of-thought of the present time, until it does not longer
express the highest quality of love--the spiritual--but rather the
socio-commercial quality that seeks and expects reward of praise or
material emolument.

Although it is some time since "altruism" was first used--and it is
a word of most important meaning to sociology--there are few who can
define it.

Probably the material rush of the time has allowed little opportunity
for acquaintance with it. It is rarely seen in the magazines, and
almost never in the daily papers. This is probably the reason why
the author was able to find only three, out of thirty persons asked,
who could define "altruism." These thirty were met haphazard, and
represented a fair average of city intelligence. It follows, by
inference, that there is not as much altruism as there should be in
existence among us, for, if there were, the word chosen by Comte to
express it would be more widely used and known.

In presenting a set of definitions, there is no intention of calling
into question the intelligence of any reader. The idea was suggested
by the wide difference of understanding of the meaning of the word
"worry." This difference of understanding became apparent in the
discussion of _Menticulture_.[1]

It was found that many persons defined "worry" as "any consideration of
the future," whereas only apprehensive consideration of the future was
intended to be meant by its use in _Menticulture_.

Reference to the origin of the word revealed that it was first used to
express the "barking of a small dog," probably in contradistinction to
the biting of a large dog. It was first "worrit," and became "worry,"
as now, later on. "Picking" and "nagging" were its synonyms in slang
until they were taken into the language as sober expressions.

In the attempt to separate "worry" from "forethought," the word
"fearthought" was coined, and hence our present title, and also the
definitions hereunder, whose object is to render misunderstanding as
nearly impossible as possible.

Only a few of the words relative to our treatise are defined--only such
as have been found to cause discussion in consideration of the subject.


No definition of the Christian conception of God can be adequate.
God is the source of all, in all, and around all. "The Absolute,"
"Father," "Creator," "Jehovah," "Source" and other terms are used for
euphony and to express separate God-qualities. Whoever attempts to
define God, shows pitiful limitations thereby. We may _feel_ God, but
we cannot _define_ God. _Appreciation_ of God is the measure of man's
possibilities of growth and the key to power and happiness.


Even in its material application, "appreciation" is a word of greatest
importance, and should mean _the highest form of intelligence_. It
is commonly used to express only a simple knowledge of value, but it
should have a larger significance, by conveying the idea of fullest
cultivation and enjoyment as well as knowledge.

Wealth, for instance, can be measured only by appreciation. The
child in appreciating a toy is richer than a drowning man with a
thousand dollars in gold in his pocket. We will therefore understand
appreciation to mean _knowledge and full cultivation and enjoyment_.

"Appreciation" might justly be given first place in the language, as,
in its spiritual application, it implies the knowledge of God that
gives birth to Love.

Our definition, "knowledge--or understanding--cultivation and full
enjoyment," conveys the largest and highest meaning of "appreciation,"
but the realization of it is not complete until every God-expression is
included, even to the smallest wonder of the universe.

Neglect of the cultivation of appreciation of _everything_--of the
commonest things in our surroundings--is loss of opportunity to
conserve the greatest aid to progress and growth; because, appreciation
of lesser things insures a better appreciation of the most important

Cultivation of appreciation is cultivation of the germ of all good
and the opening wide of the spiritual flood-gates. Even the complete,
yet simple, dignity of the Lord's Prayer can be epitomized within the
prayer, _Father, teach Thou us Appreciation_.


In its pure form, as Christ meant it, Love makes no distinction between
creatures nor between things; its merit is in the act--or thought--and
not in the object loved.

The divine quality in man, growing out of appreciation, finds first
expression in love; not the passive principle, the opposite of hate,
but the growing, active principle, which is constantly flowing forth
from the spiritually blessed to bathe with warmth of unselfishness the
just and the unjust alike. Love begets altruism.

As "perfect love casteth out fear," so does the eradication of fear
insure the wooing of perfect love.


Next in the scale of importance is Comte's word "altruism," which was
coined to suggest the Christ-like attitude of unselfish service between
fellow-men. It is, however, as before stated, now commonly understood
to be the social or business application of the principle of love which
needs and expects to be reciprocal. Men were asked to become altruists
when they were asked to "do unto others as you would that others should
do unto you." Growth towards divinity is the fruit of perfect altruism.
Perfect Love begets Perfect Altruism. Christ is the Perfect Altruist.


Any degree of altruism is good and is sure to lead to higher degrees,
but the perfect type is best kept in view by the use of the qualified
form expressed by the adjective "spontaneous"--meaning voluntary,
without reward, except as found in the act itself. This qualification
is almost necessary to prevent the lowering of the value of the term,
as "perfect" was required to express Christ-Love, in contra-distinction
to worldly love.


Optimism is _forethought_. Christianity, pure and undefiled, is perfect
optimism. Christ is the Perfect Optimist.[2]


"Forethought" is _the logical, trustful, hopeful, Christian, and
therefore stimulating, consideration of the future_.

Forethought cannot be contrasted as the opposite of fearthought for the
same reason that a tree cannot be contrasted as the opposite of its
shadow; one being the growing, fruit-bearing substance; and the other
being the unsubstantial, unillumined simulation of the living reality.


_Surroundings which impress themselves upon the mind and assist to
influence and form character and opinions._


Sometimes called unconscious cerebration; _intelligence not derived
from experience_; principally obtained during undisturbed sleep,
and, seemingly, supernaturally clear to consciousness on awakening
in natural manner; Spiritual Cerebration is man's best partner, if
confidently listened to, heeded and followed.


_Unconscious physical attraction_; assisting sustenance, protection,
development and reproduction; attribute of all life.


_Attribute only of Man; distinguishing Man from the rest of Creation;
exercised in modifying the brute law of the "survival of the fittest,
or strongest," by cultivating harmonic conditions favoring growth and
producing happiness; God's Higher Law of Harmony executed through Man._


_The evidence and fruit and reward of growth as involved in Altruism._


As commonly used, "nature" means creation apart from man. The accepted
definition is "creation," and as such includes man and all created
things, and also the processes of creation--generation, degeneration
and regeneration--as involved in growth. The common use of the word
"nature" is a convenient one, and hence let us make use of it as
meaning _creation other than man_.


Egociation is, _Appreciation of self as a creation of God and as an
instrument of Altruism_--to be cultivated to its greatest possibilities
in order that it may render _Altruistic service in the execution of the
Higher Law of Harmony_.

There are two distinct kinds of _ego_--self: The _ego_ that is
physically and intellectually born only, and whose tendencies are
egotistically selfish, and therefore, _animalesque_: And the _ego_ that
enjoys Appreciation, realizes God, loves spontaneously, understands the
Higher Law of Harmony and serves with enthusiasm in the execution of
the Law by the exercise of Divine Selection, and thereby attains True

The mental equipment of the unthinking is dulled by a confusion of
these two _egos_, and hence they cultivate egotism, believing it to
be _Egociation_; as they cultivate _fearthought_, believing it to
be forethought; and as they tolerate license, believing it to be an
attribute of liberty.

The desirability of separating the lower, or animal, self from the
Higher Self, warrants the coining of a term, sufficiently new to
attract attention and sufficiently allied to well-known words to
explain itself. With this object in view I have empirically selected
a combination of _ego_ and _appreciation_, and in so doing, have
coined the euphonious term _Egociation_ as an antithesis of "egotism,"
especially useful in inculcating a general understanding of the Higher
Law of Harmony and in securing recognition of the place of the Higher
Self within the Law.

In the cultivation of Egociation, man recognizes and asserts an
_individuality_, or _responsibility_, as a part of the whole, the
result of appreciation, opposed to _personality_ or _separateness_,
which is an attribute of egotism.

       *       *       *       *       *

Words that carry good suggestion with them are less liable to do harm
by being variously understood than those that convey bad suggestion.
These latter should be defined in such a manner as to clearly suggest
their badness; in fact, war should be waged upon them by every possible

       *       *       *       *       *


"Egotism" is _separation from God_. The fruit of egotism is selfishness.


In the list of the deterrents, selfishness holds bottom place.
Self-forethought, self-carefulness, self-culture, and self-respect, are
in no way related to selfishness, but are provision of strength towards
useful purposes. Selfishness is the mark of animal origin. We will
therefore define it as _relic of animalism remaining in man_.

Selfishness is the opposite of altruism. While a suggestion of
altruism is found in some animals, especially in dogs, it is not an
animal characteristic. Selfishness is the predominant animal trait and
therefore excuses the otherwise unkindly comparison.


Fear is also a relic of animalism, and a child of selfishness--a
deformed child of an ill-formed parent. It is not a physical condition,
but simply an expression of fearthought. We will therefore define
"fear" as _an expression of fearthought_.


"Fearthought" is _the self-imposed or self-permitted suggestion of
inferiority_. It is both a _cause_ and an _effect_ of selfishness. It
is the "tap-root of evil."

"Fearthought" was coined by the author in order, if possible by
suggestion, to separate from divinely ordained forethought any element
of apprehension or weakness that might be masquerading under the name
of forethought in the minds of the unthinking.


"Worry" is _fearthought in contradistinction to forethought_.


"Anger" is _the brutal and self-inflicting expression of
disapproval_--brutal, because it is ungodly, unchristian and
unaltruistic; _self-inflicting_, because the ill-effect of it reacts
upon the person enangered.

There can be no "righteous anger." Disapproval there must be, because
man has been endowed with the faculty of _Divine Selection_, and
thereby shows a divinity denied to all other living things whose
preferences are called in Science "natural selection." Disapproval in
the interest of harmony--_Divine Selection_--and disapproval in the
creation of discord--anger--are, the one holy, and the other unholy,
uses of the faculty of selection.

There may be, then, _righteous disapproval_, but there never can be
"righteous anger."


"Envy" is _anger of non-possession_.

"Envy" is sometimes wrongly used to express appreciation, as, "I envy
you your good fortune," but we will give it the one meaning of "anger
of non-possession."


"Jealousy" is "the homage that inferiority pays to merit";[3] or,
_recognition or confession of inferiority_; or, _fearthought_.


"Tap-root" is "the chief root." It is the main support of the tree, of
nearly the size of the trunk, and without which the tree must fall and
die. The tap-root strikes deep into the soil, while the surface-roots
reach out along the surface. For example; egotism is the tree of evil,
either selfishness or fearthought is the tap-root, and anger and
worry in all their phases are the surface roots of the tree. The tree
is known by its fruits, which are, separation, paralysis, disease,
unhappiness and death.


Trouble does not really exist. Fearthought of trouble is as near as
one ever gets to the condition, for the reason that whatever has come
has already ceased to exist, except in the memory. The reason for so
fine a distinction is made clear under the caption of "The Impotence
of Pain," and is emphasized in order to place merited responsibility
on fearthought. What is called "trouble," however, can be defined as
_unwelcome conditions_, but, if analyzed, the chief elements of the
"conditions" will be found to be _fearthought of still more unwelcome
conditions_. The tap-root, then, of trouble is fearthought.


Pessimism is _fearthought_. Pessimism is the devil.


Nervousness is generally an _effect_ and not a _cause_. It is the
immediate or reflex result of fearthought.


Like "nervousness," so-called, "temperament"--habit-of-feeling--is
generally an effect and not a cause; and is frequently used as an
excuse for self-indulged weaknesses.


[1] _Menticulture_ is the title of a book by the present author, whose
mission is to declare a theory of the possible and very profitable
eradication of the germs of all evil, and consequent unhappiness,
which are commonly assembled under the class names of "anger" and
"worry",--"anger" representing the aggressive, and "worry" representing
the cowardly passions.

[2] Note: The motto of Optimism is, as elsewhere stated, "_All can be_,
and therefore _shall be_, well."

[3] NOTE--I take this apt definition of "jealousy" from that excellent
periodical--the organ of the League of American Wheelmen--"The Bulletin
and Good Roads." Many good suggestions in menticulture accompany the
excellent suggestions relative to good roads in this paper. Good
thoughts are good roads to good action.


Christ taught almost entirely by parable.

Apropos of the value of simile is an experiment about which I have
recently heard.

An experimenter wished to measure in some way the strength of certain
vibrations and their effect upon vibratory things. A large steel comb,
such as is used in music-boxes to produce sounds, was constructed. Each
tooth was made as nearly as possible just like every other tooth. They
not only seemed to measure alike, but when set in motion the vibrations
seemed to be alike to the sense of hearing.

There was also constructed a huge tuning-fork, large enough to be
struck with a bar of iron, and whose vibrations, when it was struck,
came forth in big undulating waves like the pealing of a temple bell.

The object of the experiment was to observe, through the effect of
powerful vibrations on the teeth of the resonant comb, a possible
difference, too slight to be measured by calipers or by striking the
teeth separately. The sound-waves, coming alike to all, would affect
all alike unless there should be a difference in the receptivity of
the teeth owing to differing density of metal, size, or some other
condition not measurable by other means. By listening attentively near
to the comb, the effect of the vibrations on the separate teeth could
be heard.

The tuning-fork was placed about forty feet away from the steel comb,
and was struck a heavy blow with the iron bar. Only three of the twelve
teeth vibrated in response. The others were not in sympathy. _They did
not hear the sound._

I did not see the experiment, but it will serve to illustrate the
value of simile.

All knowledge is measured by comparison. The most effective teaching
is done through parable or simile. A so-called magnetic orator or
writer reaches his hearers or readers by aid of apt simile. In this
the orator has the advantage. If one simile does not convey the
point he wishes to make, he tries another and yet another until he
has detected sympathetic signs of approval in the majority of his
audience. If there are present a hundred listeners, it may require
ten stories or ten similes to reach the entire hundred, as there may
be ten kinds of interest or sympathy present to be reached. Farmers
and gardeners may not be familiar with the terms that describe the
experience of the mariner; mechanics may not understand the language
of the counting room or of the various exchanges; and men may not
appreciate the special accomplishments, sympathies, weaknesses or
foibles of women. Each individual is a separate tooth or string in the
instrument called society. Heredity and environment have tempered and
shaped each individual differently from his fellows. Truth is always
the same, but the vibrations that carry it must be regulated to suit
the conditions and understandings of each person, or group of persons,
to be harmonized by it.

In an attack upon offensive and evil things, offensive similes are
best employed. It is an application of the principle that a thief can
best catch a thief. The object of this little book is to wage war upon
fearthought and its brood of evil children. This is the excuse for
writing under such offensive captions as "Don't Be a Sewer," and "Thou
Shalt Not Strike a Woman," and also such ungrammatical caption as "I
Can't _Not_ Do It."

It is the opinion of the author that we are in the habit of taking
evil too seriously. Evil is usually ridiculous, and while it thrives
under the stimulation of serious consideration, it cannot stand
ridicule. Shrewd politicians know this, and hence depend more upon
the political cartoon to kill the political enemy, than upon all the
reading matter possible to be printed.

What the terms "God," "Appreciation," "Mother," "Love," "Altruism,"
"Egociation," "Forethought," "Happiness," etc., stand for, should
be reverenced and glorified; while the devil, egotism, selfishness,
fearthought, anger and worry, and all of their various expressions,
should be ridiculed out of respectability.

There is no intent to make vulgar excuses for the method of
presentation of the simple and aged truths which are the subject of the
present book. For the same reason that I have asked my readers to agree
with me as to the meaning of terms in connection with the discussion,
I ask them to allow me to state my reasons for the method of the
presentation, if it should seem unusual and, perhaps, undignified.


Professor Angelo Mosso, the eminent physiologist of Turin, Italy, who
has experimented with the condition and results of fear to a greater
extent than any one else that I know of, has published a volume
entitled "Fear."[4]

Professor Mosso writes of much regarding fear that we can all
corroborate from personal experience as to the uncomfortableness of
the emotion, and also informs us of much that is instructive as to the
baleful effects of the mischief it produces upon the tissues of the
body. He states that, unconsciously or consciously, the effect of fear
is found to be disarrangement, which allows or causes inflammation,
fever and other unhealthy conditions that are favorable to the nesting
of the microbes of special diseases, such as are sometimes found in the
air or in the water that we take in, and which are ever waiting for a
chance to nest and breed.

An eminent English physician has also communicated to a leading
English magazine a belief that fear directly attacks the individual
molecules of the body and causes a disarrangement, a relaxing, a
letting-go condition of the molecules in their relation to adjoining
molecules, and that the relaxed condition is that in which disease
originates. He states that there are means of communication within the
body that are as direct and distinct as are the wires that convey the
electric fluid from point to point, and that they connect the brain or
nervous centers with each pair of molecules. By these means the sense
of fear travels, weak or strong, in response to every pulse of its

Within our visible experience, we know how completely the emotion of
fear, or any of its various expressions can upset the stomach, suspend
the appetite and even cause instant death. So evident are the bad
effects of fear, that it is necessary only to refer to them before
suggesting a remedy; but there are some powerful illustrations that
are interesting, and which will be found under the caption of "Baleful
Effects of Fear."

In this connection, what we are most interested in is, how to rid
ourselves of the habit of fear. Fear is not a physical thing. It is the
result of fearthought, and, being fearthought, has no more substance
than other thought.

In animals it is an attribute of instinct, and is a wise provision of
protection. In the human young, it is not so. In the helplessness of
human foetal existence and infancy, we find a perfectly clean, but
wonderfully impressionable, thought-matrix, into which are to be
impressed the suggestions whose sum constitutes the intelligence in men
which takes the place of instinct in animals.

Fear is no constituent part of the composition of this thought-matrix.
Susceptibility to fearthought, as it is susceptible to any and all
suggestions, is the nearest approach to inherent infliction of fear
that the unfolding soul is burdened with. If the race-habit-of-thought
were indelibly pock-marked by fear, and stamped its roughness on the
thought-matrix of all mankind, there would be no one free from it; but,
as many are born into, and live, a life of great strength and courage,
free from any taint of fearthought, this assumption is disproved,
and is as absurd as would be the assumption that man must always do
whatever, and only what, his ancestors did.

All of the fear-impressions received are the result of either pre-natal
or post-natal suggestion. It is within the power of parents and nurses
to keep the delicate susceptibility of their charges free from the
curse of fearthought; or to cause or allow it to be scared and bruised
by the claws of the demon.

President G. Stanley Hall, of Clarke University, Editor in Chief of the
_American Journal of Psychology_, and Dr. Colin A. Scott, Professor of
Psychology and Child Study at the Cook County Normal School, Chicago,
Ill., U. S. A., have rendered greatest service to humanity by searching
out and analyzing fears in children, exposing the absurdity of them,
showing the sources from which foolish fears are derived, and thereby
dragging from ambush the worst enemy of mankind, whose strength is
developed by means of secret toleration, but can easily be overcome if

The method of securing information was by means of the _questionaire_,
the answers to which, although unsigned and unidentifiable, and
savoring of exaggeration or romance, furnish splendid texts in a
crusade against the toleration of the habit-of-fear in a civilized
community. One can scarcely imagine, before reading the answers to the
fear _questionaire_, the unreasonable and absurd fears that warp the
lives and ruin the health of many of the people among whom we move,
and by whom, in some measure, we and our children are unconsciously

If it were the community-habit-of-thought that fear was an unnecessary
thing and an evil thing, and not respectable and not Christian, many
of these fears would not exist, owing to the proneness of all persons
to imitation and their acceptance of community-of-habit-thought as law
and gospel. Fear is a very insidious thing. It will enter the smallest
opening, and ferment, and increase, and permeate whatever it attacks,
if it be permitted foothold in the least degree.

We have too little time in life personally to investigate all of the
causes of things that are pertinent to our living and working, or
to learn the reason for their leading to observed results. We are
indebted to Professor Mosso, Dr. Hall, Dr. Scott and other painstaking
scientists, for observing the habits of our enemies, and for giving
the results of their observations in such agreeable forms as are the
intimate and frank analyses of fear given in Professor Mosso's book
and other treatises on the subject; but what we are most interested
in is, how to kill or how to escape fearthought within ourselves and,
ultimately, how to protect our children against the evil.

To digress somewhat, and as an excuse for using the terms of parable
and homely experience instead of the terms of science: It is said that
the use of alum for the settling of impurities out of water was an old
housewife's remedy for a very long time before any scientist studied
the chemical change that effected the result.

The old housewives knew by experience, as well as did the doctors, that
alum _would_ "settle" water, but it was left to the latter to say _why_
it did so. We are, therefore, mainly indebted to a chance discovery,
and to the preservation of the formula by housewives, for our ability
to purify water by means of alum.

In the same manner we have discovered, perhaps by accident, that
certain suggestions will purify our minds, by eliminating special fears
by which we have been dominated. We also have learned by experiment
that all fear is eliminable by use of sufficiently powerful suggestion
made to fit the particular fear experimented against. I _know that the
deterrent passions can be eradicated_; and, _easier than not_. Others
_know_ this also, and are living lives of beautiful strength, freedom
and happiness, who once were slaves to fearthought; and many such
there already are, and their number is increasing very rapidly under
the influence of the observation of unfailing, profitable results in

If we _know_ that anything _can be done_, it is not vitally essential
that we should know _why_ it is possible.

Experience, in conveying the suggestion, has taught that there is
_some_ way to reach, and to dispel, any special fear.

Science will some time, undoubtedly, be able to tell us just how to
treat each form of fear in a scientific manner, but in the meantime we
_know_ that it is possible to cure all of the separate forms of fear
by rooting out the basic fear--the fear of death--and by conveying the
all-powerful suggestion that all fear is needless and unprofitable.


[4] Messrs. E. Lough and F. Kiesow, pupils of Professor Mosso,
translated the fifth Italian edition of "Fear" into English, and
Longmans, Green and Company published it in 1896.


In the last chapter I stated that the bad effects of fear were so well
known to every one that it was not necessary to dwell upon them, but
second thought suggests stating a few special cases that have been told
me by physician friends who are interested in the lay experiments I am

In the Southern States of the United States of America, where the
black race comes into closest touch with Caucasian civilization under
conditions of free expression, is probably the best place to study fear
and its opposite, chivalrous courage.

Dr. William E. Parker, of the Charity Hospital of New Orleans, was once
called to attend a big negro who had been brought in by the ambulance,
and whom the students in charge of the ambulance had frightened nearly
to death by telling that he was badly wounded in the stomach, and would
probably die.

The negro was big and burly and black, and yet, livid with fear.
Both pulse and temperature indicated serious trouble within, and the
convulsive tremors that shook him from time to time revealed a state
of collapse that might end in death at any time. There was no outward
flow of blood, but the probable inward flow seemed more dangerous in

The account of the case, as related by the students, told of a shooting
affray, in which the negro had been hit in the abdomen, as evidenced by
a bullet-hole in his clothing.

Dr. Parker began an examination by ordering the clothing of the patient
removed, and during which a bullet, much flattened, fell upon the
floor. This bullet had done no serious injury, of course, but there
might have been two shots and two bullets, one of which had penetrated
the body, and hence the bullet that fell upon the floor caused no
special attention, till search had been made in vain for a hole in the
skin. Complete examination revealed the fact that the negro had been
hit, but that the bullet had struck a button, causing a bruised place
behind the button, but had lodged in the clothing, in harmless inertia.

As the doctor held up the bullet, and told the patient of the slight
extent of his injury and the wonder of his escape, good, warm blood
returned to the livid countenance, the pulse and the temperature
assumed their normal condition, a grateful sparkle lit up the almost
glassy eyeballs, and the broadest possible grin spread over the face of
the erstwhile dying man.

The negro got down from the operating-table, arranged his clothing,
and, after apologizing for the trouble he had caused, and after
thanking the doctor and the students for their attentions, went out
into the street as well as ever. He had been, half an hour before, at
death's door.

Dr. Henry A. Veazie, one of the student-heroes of the yellow-fever
epidemic of 1878, who had splendid opportunity to witness the effects
of fear during an epidemic, asserts that fear is a certain cause of
attack of yellow fever.

I will say, parenthetically, in the way of right information relative
to the South, that there has been no epidemic since 1878--twenty years;
that it has been proven that yellow fever does not originate in any
part of the United States, and that it is very effectively barred out
at quarantine, or, if accidentally admitted, that it is easily killed
by present means of treatment, and that an epidemic is no longer
mentioned as a possibility--only as quite a remote memory--in New
Orleans, or elsewhere in the South.

Doctor Veazie's story is corroborated by an able brochure on "The
Influence of Fear in Disease," by the much-beloved, the late Dr.
William H. Holcomb, of New Orleans; and, so helpful are the suggestions
contained in it, that I have secured the privilege from the Purdy
Publishing Company, of Chicago, of reprinting largely from it, and have
added the matter copied as "Appendix A," to this volume.[5]

Doctor Veazie also called my attention to the unusual fatality
attending what are called "frog-accidents." Train-handlers and yardmen
employed on railroads are very liable to these "frog-accidents." The
frog is that part of a switch where the rails come together, forming
a "V." In running about recklessly, as a train-man generally does, he
sometimes catches the sole of a boot in the "V," and wedges it in so
tightly that the foot cannot be withdrawn. If a locomotive, or a car,
happen to be coming towards him, and cannot be stopped in time, cutting
off of the foot or the leg by the wheels upon the rails is a certain

If it were done instantly, and without a foreknowledge of the owner
of the leg or foot, the chances of recovery would be almost assured,
because of the present skill of surgery and the efficacy of known
antiseptics; but with the few moments of foreknowledge of the impending
accident, the poison of fearthought has time to so unnerve the system,
relax the tissues, and itself disease the body by shock, that the
wounding usually results in death.

There is probably no situation in which a person can be placed where
the conditions are more horrible than to be wedged between the rails,
and to see an eighty-ton locomotive rolling on to him with irresistible
weight. Being condemned to be hanged cannot be as fearful, for the
reason that the condemned has been led gradually to contemplate the
possibility of death by this means, and has come to expect it with a
certain amount of complacency. The terror of the "frog-accident" comes
with the suddenness of its possibility and the helplessness of the
situation. It is like an ice-water bath thrown on a sweating person.
It is the icy hand of death come to clutch at the throat of warmest
hope and fondest affections. As such, it must be fearful; but, to the
person habituated to _fear_ fear, through knowing the deadly effect
of it, the emotion can be prepared for, greatly modified and possibly
counteracted, by a prearrangement with the emotional self--that which
Hudson calls the "subjective mind."

To be effective in case of surprise, the preparation must come from the
habit-of-feeling, "_I must not be afraid; I must not be afraid._" No
matter what the surprise, the emotional self must instantly assert,
through habit, "_I must not be afraid_."

I have not had experience with "frog-accidents" to test the efficacy of
my theory of schooled suggestion, but I have been subject to surprises
that have been quite as fearful. As it happened, the incident I speak
of was not perilous, but it had all the appearance of being so to
me, when I was awakened from sleep, in a hotel in New York City, by
suffocation, to find my room full of smoke that poured in through the
transom and through the cracks of the door which was my only means of

My room was on the fifth floor of the hotel, and the house had the
reputation of being a "fire-trap."

As soon as my reasoning-self had time to take in the situation, the
probability of being burned to death seemed almost certain; but before
that happened--that is, before the reasoning-self had analyzed the
situation--the habit-of-thought self had asserted many times, and
constantly, "You _must not be afraid! you must not be afraid_"; and,
as a result, I was _not afraid_; and the calm of the moment allowed me
to measure chances and arrange expedients, as if there were no danger

It was a case of much smoke and little fire, but there were those in
the hotel who were made very ill by the fright of it.

If I had always been free from the emotion of fear, and had not been a
sorry victim to it in some special forms, "natural temperament" could
be urged as a cause of the calm I enjoyed during the incident related
above; but such is not the case. I have been subjected to shocks of
various kinds, incident to an adventurous life, that have been powerful
impressions for evil upon my emotional self, and it is personal
experience of cure and relief that I am giving in support of my theory.

The experience of Mr. George Kennan, the Siberian traveler, and
brilliant writer and lecturer, relative to fear and its cure, is
singularly like my own, and was related to me in an exchange of
personal confidences, last year.

The _Atlantic Monthly_ for May, 1897, contains an excellent account
of Mr. Kennan's case, and I am permitted by the publishers, Messrs.
Houghton, Mifflin & Company, to reprint it; which I have done under
Appendix "B."

Fear is rarely general as related to different causes for fearthought.
I have been told of a case of specific fear that is interesting because
of its unreasonableness. It was the case of a filibuster who had been
on several raids where death was the almost certain penalty for being
caught, and where the chances of being caught were almost certain.
On the frontier our subject was known as a dare-devil, not afraid
of anything, and yet he was always in mortal terror of a dark room.
In infancy he had been scared into obedience by tales of goblins in
the dark, and he had never rid himself of their influence. Anything
on earth he could see held no terror for him, but he could not see
the phantoms he created in the dark, and was therefore a slave to
fear of them. It is probable that the bravado of his active life was
partly caused by the desire to "average up" on courage, and, if so,
the baleful effects of fear in this case were very far-reaching and
destructive to the peace of society.

General experience teaches that whenever you find a bully, you find a
yellow streak of cowardice somewhere in his composition; and, more than
probable, bravado is assumed by him, in order to "square" himself with
his own self-respect.


[5] Two other brochures by Dr. Holcomb are published by the Purdy
Company. They are "Condensed Thoughts about Christian Science" and "The
Power of Thought in the Production and Cure of Disease."


It has been observed that the rooting out of any particular phase
of fearthought, weakens the strength of all of the other phases.
For instance, suppression of _anger_ and _worry_ tends to suppress
all suspicion, and even fear itself, while special attack upon the
fearthought called envy will perceptibly diminish the tendency to
jealousy and avarice. There seems to be such close relationship between
all of the forms of fearthought, that whatever affects one, affects all.

Fear of death undoubtedly underlies all fearthought. Fear of poverty,
fear of accident, fear of sickness, all reach further than these
calamities, to the possibility of death resulting from them. In
this way we can trace all expressions of fear, either directly or
indirectly, through the different forms of selfness, to fearthought of

In _Menticulture_ I suggested the elimination of _anger_ and _worry_
as the roots of all the evil passions. On page 17, however, I gave
"fear" as the tap-root of the evil emotions, including anger and worry,
and stated my reason for attacking the surface roots best known and
associated together, rather than the tap-root itself. It was because
I believed at the time _Menticulture_ was written, with people in
general, that fear was a constituent weakness of all consciousness, and
only expressions of it were eliminable.

I find in my later experience in practice, however, and in conveying
the suggestion to others, that fear itself is possible to be rooted out
by the force of counter-suggestion of one sort or another, and that
there is no mental habit or impression that cannot be counteracted by
some other more powerful habit or impression, and that it is best to
attack the bottom cause of all weaknesses at once, and thereby wage
warfare upon their innermost citadel.

As fearthought is the parent of all the evil emotions, so is fear of
death the first of all the causes of fearthought.

It is not a difficult matter to eliminate the fear of death. It is
first necessary to do away with any dread of a lifeless human body.
There are few who feel dread of the flesh of animals as they see it
hanging in the stalls of the butchers. There is no more reason to have
a feeling of fear in connection with the sight of dead human flesh
than there is to feel uncomfortable in the presence of the flesh of a
lifeless lamb or a lifeless chicken.

There have lived people who were as accustomed to seeing human flesh
exposed in butchers' shops as we are accustomed to see the flesh of
animals so exposed, and there is an engraving of a cannibal meat-stall
in Huxley's "Man's Place in Nature," copied from an old book of travel
to the coast of Africa, which Mr. Huxley offers authoritatively.

The subject may seem to be a grewsome one to many readers, and
reference to the customs of cannibals may shock their supersensitive
habits of thought, but the object is sufficient justification. Such
may, however, soothe their injured feelings by remembering that our
meat-selling and meat-eating customs seem as inhuman to many Buddhists
as do the customs of cannibals to us.

If we value essentials impartially, soul and mind count above
everything, and tissue which they once animated counts for nothing
when they have left it, no matter what have been the associations,
especially if dread of the dead tissue inspires emotions that are
detrimental to the welfare of soul or mind.

My object in suggesting a systematic reversal of our feeling towards
lifeless human flesh is because it is a basic cause of fear. Remove
this dread, and half of the terror of death is removed with it.

In this connection, the suggestion should be urged, that separation--as
in death--is unessential as compared with the privilege of having
known a beloved one, and that appreciation and gratitude should always
outweigh regret in relation to an inevitable change.

All of the observed processes of nature teach that every normal change
is for the better, and the change called death is as normal as the
change called birth. The full term of human life is but a pin-point
in the great span of evolution. How unreasonable it is to protest the
measurement of the breadth of a pin-point with Him who doeth all things

Life is like the ticking of a clock; each passing of the pendulum may
be a day or a year; when the clock strikes, one period only is ended,
but a new period is also begun. Why mourn at the striking of the clock!
A new and happier hour has begun. Why mourn the passing on of a beloved
one! For to Christian, or to Buddhist, as well as to all sentient
beings, a new and a better life has then begun.

The attitude towards the separation called death should be such as
to induce the thought, and even the expression, "Pass on, beloved;
enter into the better state which all of the processes of nature teach
are the result of every change; it will soon be my time to follow;
my happiness at your preferment attend you; my love is blessed with
that happiness; and what you have been to me remains, and will remain
forever. Amen."

Sorrow was dignified by Christ. He has been wrongfully called "The Man
of Sorrow." His sorrow was for the evils which men suffered, and never
was caused by any of the beneficent decrees of the Father. Protest
against the decrees of the Father is blasphemy. Some forms of sorrow
are blasphemy.

Sorrow and optimism do not go together. Christ was (and is) the Supreme
Optimist, and taught nothing but optimism. Tears do not always express
sorrow. Wherein tears express selfishness, especially in the form of
anger, they are bad. Wherein tears are free from selfishness, they may
do no great harm. In such case, what may seem to be sorrow may be an
expression of loving sympathy, and, as such, may be good.

Without careful analysis of the quality of the emotion, love may be
thought to be righteous cause for fearthought. This is a vicious
thought. Nothing is righteous that is harmful, and fearthought is
harmful. Love, without any element of fearthought in it, is infinitely
better than love that is tinctured with fearthought. Forethought is
the necessary accompaniment of perfect love, but fearthought is its

Separation can be made to gladden love through self-sacrifice.
Separation--as in death--can be made to gladden love by supreme
self-sacrifice to the beloved one who is preferred by death, and
thereby made to disarm that underlying fear of all fears--the fear of

If, however, the fear of lifeless human flesh is eliminated, the fear
of death itself will be found to be greatly modified. From this point
the elimination of special pet fears, whether of the individual or of
the community sort, will become an easy matter, as the greater is but
the sum of the lesser.

In looking for means with which to attack so great an enemy as fear,
either in one's self or in another, any weapon is a good weapon that
is found to be effective. Logic is more respectable, but such is
the foolishness of many forms of fear that ridicule is more often
effective. Appeal to honor, self-respect, love, logic, ridicule, and to
_fear itself_, may be had in so worthy a cause as the vanquishing of
the arch-enemy of growth and happiness.

Old soldiers sometimes admit that their courage in battle has been the
result of their fear of seeming to be cowards. When the far-reaching
and poisonous effect of the evil of fearthought is properly understood,
and the possibility of its elimination generally believed in, people
will be _afraid_ to be afraid--afraid of ridicule and criticism, as
well as afraid of evil and unhealthful effects. The cure will have been
homoeopathic, in that like has been employed to cure (or kill) like.

Logic is the most rational weapon, but ridicule is sharper. Logic may
not cure a robust woman of the woman-habit-of-thought that a mouse is
a fearsome thing, but reference to the fact that it is ridiculous for
a five-foot woman to be afraid of a two-inch mouse may effect the
result, especially when it is known that the mouse is more afraid of
the woman, according to his capacity for fear, than it is possible for
the woman to be afraid of the mouse.

Acquaintance is another effective cure. It may not be necessary that
all afflicted ones should serve an apprenticeship at undertaking in
order to be cured of fear of a lifeless human body, but if the fear
of a corpse cannot be eradicated by other means, it is worth while to
do that or _anything else_, no matter how uncanny or disagreeable, in
order to accomplish the object. So necessary is the eradication of the
germ principle of fear to the cultivation of growth and happiness, that
if it is found that fear of the lifeless human body cannot be cured
otherwise, even a real apprenticeship in a hospital dissecting-room
would be a profitable expedient as a last resort. To seek the
acquaintance of fearsome insects and animals, through close observation
and study of their habits, is better than to suffer harm from a
needless prejudice against them.

Cure of the fear of one dreaded insect or reptile is sure to modify
the fear of all other things dreaded, so that the difficult part of
the cure is acquiring the belief that it is possible, and making the
resolve to attempt it.

If parents realized the full importance of the eradication of
fearthought from the minds of their children, they would stop
immediately all other occupation, and rest not nor be content until the
germ of fearthought in their children had been located and killed; and
those skilled in such search and cure would become the physicians most
in demand.


Exciting interest in the intrinsic beauties and usefulness of things
thought to be disagreeable or dreadful, is an excellent way of curing
fear of them.

I once had an opportunity of experimenting with this method of curing
particular fears by testing it on a mother and children whose _bête
noir_ was a thunderstorm.

I had seen them at the World's Columbian Exposition, wrapt in the
enjoyment of the great displays of fireworks that were operated on the
lake front of the Exposition grounds each evening. I also happened to
be provided with statistics, showing that the chance of being struck by
lightning was only one in a great many thousand, and that if one were
to seek to be struck, he would have to wait about ten thousand years
for his average turn. I recalled the greater real beauty of the natural
fireworks of the summer season, and their comparative harmlessness.
This was the logic of it, and modified somewhat the attitude of the
children, as well as the fear of the mother, relative to lightning and
thunder; but the real cure came through appreciative suggestion and

On the approach of a storm wherein lightning might be expected, and
even before it was visible, the mother had been in the habit of
assuming a frightened expression, of gathering the children together,
of cowering in a corner, and sometimes in a closet, in fear and
trembling, until the storm had passed. From infancy the children had
been in the habit of associating something fearful with the idea of
lightning and thunder, and had never had a chance to observe their

I started in to correct the bad impressions, and to teach the
attractiveness of storm phenomena, by calling out, on the approach
of a storm, somewhat in this wise: "Oh! children, do you remember the
beautiful fireworks at the Exposition? Come here quick! let's watch; we
are going to have something ten times more beautiful, and, oh! such big
booms and bangs. Watch now! ah! that wasn't much, but keep a-watching
and we'll have some beauties. Crash! bang! blizzard! My! but wasn't
that a beauty? Watch sharp, now, or you'll miss the best one,--what!
afraid? Why, Alice, afraid of a beautiful thing like that! Nonsense!
Come here, dear, and sit in my lap and watch out sharp, and then you
_can't_ be afraid. There! that's a little lady. Splendid! I reckon you
know how to enjoy something beautiful, as well as any one. Boom, boom,
boom! Did you ever hear anything so grand? Great big drums up yonder.
I wonder what sort of a Fourth of July they are having? Wouldn't
World's-Fair fireworks seem tame beside this? And think of it!--they
don't cost a cent, and they are clearing the atmosphere so that the sun
will shine brighter to-morrow than it ever did. It will shine for us,
and for the plants, and for the butterflies. My! but aren't we lucky
to have good eyes and good ears when such things are going on! and
don't we pity the poor little blind and deaf children! Does lightning
sometimes strike people and kill them? Why, yes, once in a great,
great long while; but when it does, they say it is the pleasantest
sensation possible. Don't you mind when you have pleasant shivers, what
a delightful feeling it is? Well, they say being struck by lightning
is like that--only more so. I have never had the experience of being
killed by lightning, of course, but when my turn to enter the next
life comes, I hope it will be that way; but the chances of being that
lucky are very slim. Somebody, some great schoolmaster that knows
almost everything, has calculated that if a man wanted to be struck by
lightning he would probably have to wait about ten thousand years. That
is too long. Life is delightful as it is; but if I had to wait even a
thousand years or even an hundred years more for my promotion that way,
I think I would rather choose a more common and less agreeable way";
and so on, governed by the interest and the effect upon the children.
I impressed on them the real beauty of the storm, and taught them
appreciation, to take the place of fear.

It is needless to say that that family no longer dreads the storm
cloud. The suggestion reversed their way of looking at storms, and they
then found great beauty in them and ceased to fear them.

Another experience: I once had the privilege of spending some time in
close relations of friendship to a family composed of a widowed mother
and several children, sons, daughter, nephews and nieces. A sister of
the mother, who was pronounced to be an incurable invalid, had come
from her Northern home to seek relief in the climate of the Southland.
It is impossible to imagine more tender care of an invalid. Each member
of the family vied with the others in offering gentle attentions, so
that the waning life was filled with happiness that made invalidism
almost a pleasure, as being the cause of so much loving consideration.

One morning the life-light flickered for a little and then went out.
The usual funeral preparations which are the custom were attended to,
and the remains were sent away to the far-distant home, and the family

While the remains were awaiting the appointed time of removal, the
children of the family, of all ages and both sexes, passed in and out
of the death-chamber, by day or by night, as if there had been no
death, and there was not a semblance of dread, nor fearthought nor
mourning. It was such a beautiful expression of loving consideration,
unmarred by dread or fearthought, that one might well choose such a
time and such a place and such environment on the occasion of one's
passing on to the better life.

If it be possible to be a spirit, conscious of material environment,
and in such guise to attend one's own funeral, which would be the
environment of choice? Egotism, disembodied, would undoubtedly choose
a scene of violent mourning, long drawn out, and painful to as many
as possible. Loving Unselfishness would as certainly choose a funeral
scene such as I witnessed in the house of my friends. Which would you
choose? And if, as is most reasonable to suppose from observing the
sequences of nature's processes that show that the seed of a flower
has a more nearly perfect flower enfolded within itself, spirits also
become purer by each unfolding through the release called death, and
being made pure and unegotistic by the change, they must prefer, if
they have the privilege, to have their old home remains viewed with
loving and fearless consideration, rather than with fearsome dread and
ostentatious emotion.

Then let us abjure fear in connection with death, and also in
connection with the mortal remains of the beloved.

If the conventional premises relative to death be correct, the common
attitude towards it is useless; and if the hypothetical premises be
correct, as it is better to suppose, even if we cannot assert it, the
common attitude is worse than useless, for it is both harmful and
unjust. If we cultivate fear and mourning in connection with death,
we are unjust to the dead, we are unjust to the living, we are unjust
to ourselves; and, above all, cruel to the tender and impressionable
emotions of children, to whom we are constantly leaving legacies of
cowardice and ignorant egotism, or legacies of pure suggestion, love
and appreciation.

Much might be written about the subject of this chapter, and many
illustrations could be given wherein illogical fears have been, or can
be, ridiculed away, but inasmuch as some of the following chapters
are mainly devoted to this purpose, it is not necessary to more than
suggest a line of argument under the present caption.


Let us work together for a season in the Now-Field.

We cannot work in any other field, but we can and do waste much
valuable time in trying to work in the past or in the future, and in so
doing neglect the precious now.

For recreation we may pleasantly, and perhaps profitably, speculate as
to what there may be in the way of atoms finer than star-dust, and as
to the possible degree of invisibleness of the ultimate ether. We may
also exercise and strengthen our imagination by trying to give form to
the Source of it all. Tiring of guessing in these directions, we may
vary our recreation by attempts to peep under or through the veil which
Nature so persistently holds between the present conscious life and
the one we hope for beyond the veil. It can do no harm to think form
into a forgotten past and into an uncertain future, if, in so doing,
the vital and superprecious now be well guarded against the things we
know to be deterrent to the best growth of the life-plant.

In considering the duty of the now, let us, for convenience of
comparison, liken life to an agricultural season of one year's
duration. We find, in ourselves, that the seed from which we have
unfolded has already been sown, and the life-plant pretty well
grown before we attain consciousness of duty and begin to think
independently. If we are lucky, we have been taught early what the
real object of life is, our duties in it, and the true values to be
cultivated in connection with it.

We have very sensibly learned to get in out of the wet when it rains,
and many other useful aids to comfort as well as to protection, but the
most vital assistants of growth have been neglected, and many positive
deterrents to growth have been cultivated by those who have been our
teachers, and hence it behooves us to look to our habits of thought and
of action in order to get rid of those which are detrimental to our

Of first importance is the care of the Now-Field.

We have already suggested, and it cannot be too often repeated, that
the condition favorable and necessary to growth is that of harmony--an
harmonious present is the living heir and parent of all harmonies--that
growth is the evident object of life, and that when anything ceases to
grow it begins to die--there is no growth except in the present, and no
cultivable field other than the Now-Field--that harmony, through one's
ability to always furnish the concordant note, one's self, is within
the power of each, regardless of environment or physical conditions,
if _only_ present conditions and environment are considered, and that
growth is the certain result of harmony; that our function relative
to growth is only to keep deterrent influences out of the present;
that, if we do this, Nature never fails to develop better results from
the unfolding of each succession. We have learned that all of the
deterrents we have been able to discover and classify are phases of
fearthought; that fearthought is no creation of the present, but is
sought in the future and nourished on the life-blood of the present--an
excrescent and altogether parasitic abnormality, unnecessary to the
thing it feeds on.

We have discovered, in our search for deterrents, that, if encountered
in the now, they are easily routed. We have also discovered that the
longest life is but a succession of nows. If so, how easy becomes the
problem: Work diligently in the Now-Field.

In arguing against the potency of anger and worry and other
expressions of fearthought, where the contention has been persisted in
that they were necessary evils, and amenable only to suppression, not
to elimination, I have invariably won my point when suddenly asking the
question, "Are you angry or worried at this moment?" by the admission
of my opponent, "No; not at this moment, because my mind is occupied
with something which has no element of worry or anger in it." The
replies vary, of course, but are to the same effect. I immediately
return with the question: "Is not all time but a succession of nows,
and, if so, cannot all of the nows, as well as this one, be exempt from
apprehension and irritation, by continuing to think of pleasanter and
more hopeful and helpful things?"

Each succeeding now is easier of control than the preceding one from
which it learns the habit-of-control, and, if the immanent now is
guarded, all the nows that follow will take care of themselves.

As we have observed, we need not think of the growing if we are only
diligent in keeping fearthought out of our minds. Nature will do
abundant growing for us, and if we do not seek fearthought beyond the
now, we will have nothing to keep out. _It is easier than not!_

Does it not seem _very_ easy when one thinks reasonably about it? If
we confine our efforts to the Now-Field, we leave our enemy out in the
cold by the comfortable process of non-invitation. Therefore, let us
work together for a season in the Now-Field.




Fear is fear_thought_ only.

Fear is caused by the _self-imposed_ or _self-permitted_ suggestion of

Fear is not a physical thing, but it causes physical derangement.

Fearthought is _self-imposed_, and is therefore unnecessary.

Fearthought, being evil and unnecessary, is therefore _not-respectable_.

Fearthought is a habit which is altogether irrational and illogical.

Fearthought is a parasite which, in civilized man, is entirely abnormal.

_Fearthought can be eliminated from the mind._

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought is the tap-root of all evil and trouble.

_Anger_ and _worry_ are expressions of fearthought.

All forms of worry are directly caused by fearthought.

Anger is directly or indirectly caused by fearthought.

All of the evil passions which group themselves under the class-names
of anger and worry are therefore the result of fearthought.

Fearthought is the result of egotism. Egotism is the reverse, or,
rather, perverse, of Egociation. It is caused by self-separation from
Co-operative-Strength, from Universal-Good--from God.

Selfishness is the fruit and the evidence of egotism.

Fearthought is the first expression of selfishness.

_Fearthought is_, therefore, _the tap-root of evil and consequent

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought invites success.

Fearthought invites failure.

The future is the vital part of life--the dead past furnishing only
food for reminiscence and experience.

Consideration of the future must partake of either forethought or
fearthought--it cannot partake of both at the same time.

Fearthought is in no way related to forethought except as the shadow is
related to the tree behind which it hides from the light--the light of

Forethought stimulates, aids, fosters, encourages, and insures success
of honest aims--its child is growth.

Fearthought relaxes, hampers, strangles, and thereby retards growth, to
the end of dwarfing, if not killing, it--its children are paralysis,
disease, unhappiness and death.

Forethought is a producer.

_Fearthought is a robber._

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought is constructive.

Fearthought is destructive.

Forethought suggests the building of houses for shelter wherein there
can be no fearthought about storms.

Fearthought fusses and worries over the possibility of not getting the
shelter ready in time to protect against inclement weather, and thereby
wastes the available energy, and delays the completion of the shelter.

Forethought calmly proceeds to perform a useful task without
fearthought of the extent of it. It does all that it can do--it can do
no more.

Fearthought wrings its hands, and wastes its time in saying, "How can I
ever do it?"

There is no difficulty in determining between forethought and

Whatever thought is constructive, is forethought.

_Whatever thought is destructive or wasteful is fearthought._

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought is the devil.

Fearthought is the arch-enemy of man, whose influence can be traced in
every form of calamity and unhappiness.

Fearthought is the cause of indecision, suspicion, apprehension,
jealousy, envy, indifference, self-degradation and all other forms of
weakness which separate the afflicted from the tide of success and
happiness, and which condemn them to the whirling and restless eddy of
isolation and non-progression.

Fearthought is blasphemy, because it gives the lie to the fixed
promises of God, as evidenced by experience.

Fearthought is like carbonic-acid gas pumped into one's atmosphere.
It causes mental, moral and spiritual asphyxiation, and sometimes
death--death to energy, death to tissue and death to all growth.

_Fearthought is a liar, and the father of lies._

       *       *       *       *       *

Quarantine against Fearthought first.

Fearthought is more contagious than any other disease.

Fearthought is the chief distributer and promoter of other contagious

Fearthought can be guarded against by anti-toxic means, just as
smallpox and diphtheria can be guarded against.

The serum to be used against fearthought is intelligent, persistent
right suggestion.

Fearthought can also be quarantined against, the same as other
contagious diseases.

Society can quarantine against fearthought by refusing to tolerate it
as a necessity of civilized life--by classing it as not-respectable,
and by refusing to feed it with sympathy.

Quarantine against fearthought in the individual is an easy matter to
any one who will learn that it is only evil and never good.

_Fearthought should be kept "without the gates."_

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought for others is the most intelligent altruism.

Forethought is the natural condition, but can exist only in the absence
of fearthought.

Forethought growing out of disagreeable or disastrous experience is a
useful and worthy fruit; but fearthought taken from the same experience
adds to the evil.

If a child be guarded against fearthought, he will enjoy immunity
from it during life--a life twice or thrice prolonged in consequence.
Parents should note the responsibility.

       *       *       *       *       *

The consensus of the experience of parents, of physicians, of
biologists, and of everyone who has observed child-life, is that the
premises and deductions here given are correct, but as yet there has
been no systematic effort made to eliminate fearthought out of the
atmosphere of children, as there has been to eliminate weeds, malaria,
contagious diseases, and other evils. Society should unite for defense
against, and the extermination of, _childhood's worst enemy_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought is the most pregnant cause of disaster and death.

Whoever teaches fearthought to a child, by either legend or example,
may be a murderer by so doing.

Whoever permits or nurses fearthought within himself, sows the seed of

Whoever robs a child of the freedom of mind with which nature prefers
to endow it, whether it be through pre-natal suggestion or through
suggestion given after birth, is more a thief than one who robs it of
its patrimony of goods or lands.

Whoever teaches or permits a child to suffer fearthought may never know
the end of the disturbance caused thereby. Lying, stealing, avarice,
suicide and murder may lie within the wake of its influence.

If parents have wronged their children unwittingly, they may
yet correct the infliction by right example and by right
counter-suggestions, lovingly, patiently, persistently and religiously
given until the evil has been eradicated.

_Fearthought is the seed of Suicide._

       *       *       *       *       *

Freedom is a Birthright.

Civilized Society insures Freedom.

The author has had much experience within the past few years which
teaches that fearthought itself, and tendency to fearthought, are bad
habits of the mind, that can be entirely counteracted if so desired,
and if the desire be accompanied by reasonable assistance on the part
of the afflicted ones.

Fearthought is the last relic of animal suspicion to be located,
analyzed and dispelled. When it is entirely killed; then, and only
then, will man become free--free to grow, free to appreciate his divine
inheritance and free to enjoy it as ordained. As in agriculture and in
horticulture, so in menticulture, and its contingent, physiculture,
will it be found that deterrents to perfect growth can be eradicated,
and that if attention to the germ-eradication of the deterrents is
intelligent and persistent, God will surely develop perfect growth and
the perfect fruit of happiness.

_Freedom is easier than not._

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought is the result of ignorance or perversity.

Fearthought which is perverse is criminal.

Fearing for others is criminal, because it not only depresses and
weakens them, but because it robs them of some part of the strength
that encouragement and hopeful thought would give them.

Parents who do not wish to poison the natural energy of their children
by depression and weakness, should learn the effect of telepathic
influence for good or for evil, and thereby know that all of the
expressions of fearthought are rank poisons.

Parents hold the key to character.

Whenever parents allow or teach their children to have fearthought,
they foster in them the temptation to lie and steal.

_Crime lurks in fearthought._

       *       *       *       *       *

Ignorance is _not_ bliss.

Ignorance can no longer be accepted as an excuse for the toleration of

Thought precedes every emotion and every act of life. It must have no
element of fear in it, if it is to lead up and on.

_Habit-of-thought_ asserts itself on all occasions. _Habit-of-feeling_
is the truer description, for the reason that it is the emotional self
and not the thought-self that first responds to surprise.

Habit-of-thought or habit-of-feeling can be trained to respond to
surprise with "I _must not be_ afraid," as easily as it is permitted to
respond with the cowardly dictum, "I _am_ afraid."

If one have the habit-of-fearthought in any form or degree, surprise
may cause it to inspire rash action which may end in disaster. More
lives are lost through jumping _into_ danger under the impulse of
fearthought, than are ever saved by it. Calm forethought is the better
friend in a case of peril than quaking fearthought.

_I must not be afraid!_

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought is a dissembler.

Fearthought is a very dangerous enemy, because it habitually
masquerades in the garb of forethought.

Many earnest persons who desire to cultivate only the best thought,
believe that fearthought is forethought, and invite and nurse it as

The lexicographers even, have failed to separate fearthought from
forethought, and hence it does not appear in the dictionaries under its
specific descriptive appellation.

       *       *       *       *       *

Let fear be disguised no longer. It is a child of ignorant or perverse
imagination. It is fear_thought_ only. It is always irrational and
illogical. It has no element of good nor of protection in it. Separated
from forethought, fearthought causes only paralysis and death, and
neither energizes nor saves life. It is the devil. It is the result
of false premises or impressions, but can be counteracted by logical
premises and right impressions.

_Fearthought is a masquerader._

       *       *       *       *       *

The timid are the most impressionable, and can be cured of fearthought
by intelligent, persistent, counter-suggestion.

Impressibility is as powerful an aid to good or right suggestion as it
is to bad or false suggestion. Differently used, an element of weakness
becomes an element of strength. In a matter of mind-accomplishment no
one need say "I can't," for mind is what it most earnestly wishes to be.

Limiting weaknesses there are, at present, but these are generally
found in asylums. A crusade against fearthought would, within one
generation, make asylums unnecessary.

Average intelligence can be cleared of fearthought. A crusade against
fearthought would immeasurably raise the average of intelligence.

Let no one deprecate himself or his fellows as to his or their
possibilities. The timid may become courageous; the weak may become
strong; the sick may become well, and the unhappy may become happy, by
the reversal of the attitude of their energy toward life's problems.

_Courage is a birthright._

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearlessness of death insures the strongest love of life.

No one can know what it is to appreciate life at its best until he has
ceased to have any suspicion of dread of death.

No one can realize the keenest enjoyment of life until he has grown
to _feel_--_appreciate_--that this life is an important stage of an
evolutionary process, in which the dawning of spiritual possibilities
opens up the realm of divine existence to him, and introduces to his
consciousness that _appreciation of God which gives birth to love,
growth and happiness_.

When fearthought is entirely eradicated from the mind by the
elimination of the basic fear--the fear of death--man begins to _feel_
the responsibility of growing his best, of ripening in natural manner,
and of dropping into the lap of Mother Earth only when he has instilled
into himself the richest and sweetest juices of an appreciative and
altruistic life.

_Fear not Death if you would know and love life._

       *       *       *       *       *

Mother-thought is the strongest of all thought.

Voluntary motherhood is the bravest of all acts common in life.

Whoever teaches a child to be fearless, builds greater than she can
ever know, for fearlessness in one inspires courage in many; and as
courage inspires strength and causes action, there is no end to what
may grow out of the fearless influence of the frailest and physically
weakest of women, and any young mother, in the quiet and seclusion of a
modest home, can set in motion vibrations of strength and fearlessness
that may result in the building of a great city or the invention of
some world-emancipating tool of progress.

All great accomplishments can be traced back to mother-influence.
Mother-muscle may be wanting, but mother-thought rules the world.

Mother-thought is always brave-thought in _one_ emergency, and
therefore _can be strong in all_ emergencies.

Mother-thought rules the world.

_Mother-thought blesses life._

       *       *       *       *       *

All water is pure water.

It is impurities within water that muddy it.

All men are innately good.

It is the presence of false impressions, the result of false
suggestions, that makes men selfish and bad.

There is no impurity in water that cannot be removed by some means
within the reach of chemistry, and there is likewise no bad suggestion
impressed on a sane human mind that cannot be counteracted by some
right and good suggestion.

In your judgment of men, judge the sum of their opportunities and
the quality of their environing atmosphere, and not the individuals
themselves. It will aid you to a more just appreciation of the possible
goodness of your neighbors, and greatly help to conserve your own
happiness, through the diffusion of the warm blood of charitable

_Mould conditions aright, and men will grow good to fit them._

       *       *       *       *       *

The perfect man is the harmonious man.

The perfection of anything is dependent upon the perfection of all its

Good society is made up of good individuals; individuals are measured
by their qualities of mind and character; and mind and character are
pure and good according as their constituent elements are pure and good.

Fearthought is a weak element of mind and its influence on character is

In chemistry and in mechanics we analyse and test with greatest care
the material we use, to learn its value as related to our purpose. If
it have any element of weakness we discard it.

Measure, and weigh well, thought about the future; if it partake of
fearthought, expel it from the mind, for it is evil; if it be filled
with strength, and hope, and confidence, nurse it tenderly, for it is

_Harmony is strength._

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought is strong thought.

Fearthought is weak thought.

Nervousness is frequently discreditable, and, therefore,

Nervousness is the "scapegoat" for much cowardice, ignorance and
perversion, sometimes of prenatal, but generally of post-natal, origin.
It is not as respectable as scrofula, for the reason that scrofula may
have been inherited or contracted by the accident or evil doing of
another, and can be corrected only by process of regeneration; while
nervousness is an expression or reflection of fearthought which can be
corrected by one's own right-thinking.

Whoever is not nervous when he is asleep _need not be_ nervous when he
is awake.

Eminent physicians have recently authorized the above assertions
relative to nervousness. If it is evil and unnecessary, it is,
therefore, not-respectable.

_When nervous, seek within the habit-of-thought for a cause._

       *       *       *       *       *

Attraction rules the universe.

The rivalry between attraction and counter-attraction is friendly.

Evolution is the result of being attracted to increase and to growth,
and not the result of being _pushed_ to growth.

All plant life inclines towards the light and the sun.

Plant life that is strong enough to withstand the storms, turns its
back in protest to the wind.

Pessimists snarlingly assert that attraction is the _pushing of desire_
for change, but pessimists are diseased themselves, and therefore call
things by wrong names, and give the wrong construction to everything.

Appreciation and resultant Love are caused by attraction, and not by

Whatever is attracted forward or upward, will remain in advance or

Forethought is eagerly receptive and seeks progress through attraction.

Fearthought _pushes_ to action by its own cowardice, and accomplishes
nothing useful.

_Altruism is a powerful magnet; good men are "as true as steel."_

       *       *       *       *       *

Consideration is practical altruism.

Consideration for others is evidenced by desiring to do for them what
is most desired by them, or, what is best for them. It _assumes_ no

Consideration is "catching," and the easiest way to accomplish one's
own desires, in connection with others, is to suggest consideration by

No one ever "lost a trick, or missed a meal," by being considerate; and
simple, unaffected consideration has often been the means of adding
great possessions to its own richness.

"After you," will unravel a crowd quicker than any pushing to be first.

Fearthought, and the selfishness growing out of it, are the origin of
all lack of consideration for others; and contact with others, and the
every-day amenities of life furnish constant opportunity for attacking
one of the strongest expressions of the disease of fearthought by
practice of altruistic consideration.

_The first requisite of gentility is consideration._

       *       *       *       *       *

Happy Day!

"Good morrow," "good day," "good morning," and "good evening," were
originally intended to have the same significance as our opening
salutation, but now they have generally become stale and mean no more
than "how are y--" "how d'y" and other perfunctory greetings that are
ridiculous when rendered with an inflection that resembles a grunt.

Elsewhere it is related how "happy day" is used in some families to
greet the morning.

What humanity is suffering from is a restriction of affections, and an
effusion of fears.

People are afraid of being frank and therefore cultivate the sulks,
suffer and become ill from the repression.

If you cannot greet the morning and likewise every living thing and
every inanimate thing that there is with "Happy Day," you had better
take medicine for the trouble, for you are really ill.

_Happy Day!_

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought is Optimism.

All good men are optimists.

The contrastive definitions of "optimism," and "pessimism" and
"content," as given by Rev. Dr. Newel Dwight Hillis in an address
on optimism, which the author had the pleasure of hearing, are in
themselves an epitome of good suggestion relative to the profitable
attitude toward the past, the present and the future.

Said Dr. Hillis, "The pessimist cries, 'all is ill, and nothing can be
well'; the idle dreamer assumes that 'all is well,' but the optimist
declares that 'all has not been ill, and all has not been well--all is
not ill, and all is not well--but all _can be_ and therefore _shall be_

Appreciation of ever-present blessings--the sun, the birds, the perfume
of the flowers, the mist, the constant changes in the aspect of nature,
the love of friends, the hurdles that are met and cleared at a bound,
and even the obstructions that Providence places in the _wrong road_,
make them all seem to chant in chorus,--"No matter what has been; no
matter what is; all _can be_ and _shall be_ well."

_Optimism is life._

       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought inspires Pessimism.

Pessimism is a false prophet.

It would certainly seem to be in the interest of freedom if the
utterances of evil foreboding and pessimistic prophesy were frowned
upon, if pessimists were avoided as lepers are avoided, and if their
effect on growth and development were to measure the merit or demerit
of thoughts or teachings, as well as of actions.

Society's duty toward the individual is wisely to prevent him from
doing harm, either to himself or to others. All experience teaches that
pessimism is generally lying prophesy. To prohibit false prophesy,
that can only injure both the maker and the hearer of it, would seem,
then, to be not only the right, but the duty, of society. To prohibit
bad suggestion as well as bad action, when action is known to be but
materialized or realized suggestion, would seem to be a duty of society.

_Pessimism is poison._

       *       *       *       *       *

"Perfect Love Casteth out Fear."


Perfect Love cannot exist until Fear is _first cast out_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Forethought is essential to cultivation and happiness.


_Fearthought in forethought_ prevents cultivation and kills happiness.

       *       *       *       *       *

Fear is Habit-of-Fearthought only, and is self-imposed, or imported.

It is, therefore:


       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought, being unnecessary, is a weak, or a cowardly,

It is, therefore:


       *       *       *       *       *

Fearthought, the arch-enemy of mankind, can be eliminated from the
Habit-of-Thought--can be entirely eradicated.



       *       *       *       *       *

Man, equipped with _divine selection_, is the only cultivator in
Nature. Nature does all growing herself, and assigns all cultivating to


He cultivates only through removing deterrents to growth.

       *       *       *       *       *

Man's value, as assistant in evolution, consists in his ability to
create harmonic conditions favorable to growth through the exercise of
_divine selection_.


He secures perfect harmony only by first harmonizing himself.

       *       *       *       *       *

Happiness is "the aim and the end of existence."


Happiness can rest only in Harmony, Appreciation, Love and Altruism.

       *       *       *       *       *

Happiness is "The Greatest Thing in the World."

But:--_If sought aright_,




The attitude of Man towards his weaknesses is commonly that of
repression. He assumes that fearthought, and fear, and anger, and
worry, and all of the evil passions are inherent things that may be
repressed but not eradicated; modified but not eliminated; kept under
partial control but not gotten rid of; and cut down below the surface,
so as not to be exposed to the world, but not rooted out entirely.

By some persons it is even thought to be an accomplishment of great
merit to acknowledge strong roots of carnal weakness and to then
succeed in hiding any outward expression of them. In others, equally
well-meaning, the aggressive and consumptive passions are nursed
and exhibited as evidences of unusual sensitiveness and virility
appertaining to fineness, goodness and greatness. It is not long
since it was the custom of clergymen in some denominations to assume
unworthiness for themselves in order to glorify the redeeming power
of the Saviour, notwithstanding all of Christ's teachings inculcated
that true forgiveness consisted in the simple process of _ceasing
to have_--ceasing to admit, or import. When, in former times,
priesthood was degraded to a business--an occupation for a living, or
for convenience or power--it was natural that the difficulty of the
service rendered the laity by the priests should be exaggerated so as
to command the highest respect, the greatest power and the largest
compensation. Sin was made to seem powerful and ever-present in order
that the service rendered in keeping it in check might seem important
and everlasting. Under such circumstances, and especially when the one
great unpardonable sin against the church was that of doubting the
teachings of these teachers, how almost impossible must it have been
for the laity to rise superior to evil, when those whose profession it
was to combat it, found it so potent an enemy, and who, thereby, filled
the atmosphere of thought with dense clouds of evil suggestion.

It is fortunate for the present generation that such shadows of
suggestion do not hopelessly oppress it. There are many churches
now where appreciation, and love, and purity, and the delights of
unselfishness are offered as the attractions towards religion, and
where the teachers in them stand for examples of pure thinking, pure
living, and spontaneous altruism, practiced as a result of natural
impulses that are both agreeable and profitable, and not to save from
hell or to fit for a remote heaven. But the shadow of the old method,
that so long hid the Christ-method of true thinking and living, still
has an influence in giving strength to evil to afflict the weaker
sons of our civilization. This shadow, however, cannot long remain.
The light of the present awakening is too strong--too electric and too
penetrating--to permit it to remain.

It is even looked upon now as a curiosity--a relic of antiquity--to
hear the old fears given expression from the pulpit, but root
eradication of them is not yet insisted upon as the first and most
important teaching, as it should be. It is a common thing now, also,
to hear altruistic teaching and optimistic preaching from the pulpits
of all denominations, and to hear from the teachers and preachers the
assurance that "it is easier than not and more profitable in every way
to be unselfish and not to tolerate evil," the new good suggestion of
which, is the inspiring assertion that, "_it is easier than not_."

It would be a rare thing now to find a religious teacher of
intelligence who would not agree with the assertion that, when a
person is angry, he cannot be, at the moment, a Christian, for being
angry is as unchristian as profanity. The same condemnation applies to
worry, which is especially commanded against, and which, in the light
of the observed promises of God as expressed by the preponderance of
the prevalence of good, is not less than blasphemous in its exhibition
of lack of confidence in, and appreciation of, the Giver of All Good.

A most helpful thought in connection with the easy subjugation of the
_animalesque_ expressions of fearthought is, that they are not inherent
things, and that they are imported whenever suffered. The tendency to
import is inherent, and the _tendency_ to entertain evil is the shadow
of past error in the race which is called race-habit-of-thought, and it
is that which has to be replaced by right-habit-of-thought before one
is entirely free, but tendency is easily overcome when its parents are
discredited and made not-respectable thereby.

The spiritual awakening of the present era that is reclaiming
Christianity from the supernatural, or unnatural, and applying it to
everyday affairs, may be called practical or business Christianity.
A business man who has an occupation wherein it is possible for him
to be altruistic, after reading the theory that is the contention of
_Menticulture_, wrote a commentary in which he said: "On these precepts
not only 'hang all of the law and the prophets,' but, also, common
business sense and _all of the profits_."

As an illustration of the difference between eradication (or
filtration) and repression (or gradual dilution or reform) I will cite
a common example: Suppose a vessel to be filled with muddy water which
we wish to make clear, so that it will perfectly reflect the ether
above, which we call the sky; the easy and effective method is first
to pass the water through a filter and thereafter to protect it from
contamination. On the contrary, the difficult, expensive, endless and,
therefore ineffective method is to pour unlimited clear water into the
vessel, in order to gradually replace the muddy water with the excess
of pure water.

While it is true that "perfect love casteth out fear," it also is
true that there can be no perfect love until there is first perfect
freedom from fear, so that the right way to approach the problem of
creating the harmonious condition in the human mind wherein growth
ripens in happiness, is to take the mind when it is returned to us at
the moment of awaking from sleep, when it has been purified by contact
with Spiritual Cerebration, and protect it from that time forth through
each day, by refusing _to import_ suspicion, anger or worry into it, a
process that is _easier than not_, and pleasanter and more profitable
than any.

Each day, the tendency to import, which is the only part of the process
of eradication that is in any way real, will become less strong,
and, with even the weakest attempts to discourage it; but if you are
sufficiently in earnest to say, "Begone, you tempter," and thereby slam
the door in his face, you will accomplish freedom at once.

The self-infliction of fearthought is a shoveling-in process--all
that you have to do to become free from it is to stop shoveling. It
is easier to stop importing fearthought, and anger, and worry, and
suspicion, than it is to import them; therefore,

_Stop importing!_


During the Japanese-Chinese war, two Japanese students were arrested
in Shanghai on the charge of espionage, and were taken to Ningpo and
tortured to death.

The method of torture was the most cruel known, and included a slow
crushing of the most sensitive parts of their anatomy.

The young patriots displayed such heroism under the torture that the
incident gave rise to considerable discussion as to the relative
sensitiveness of the Mongolian and the Caucasian races to pain. The
consensus of the opinion that I saw expressed, which was, by the way,
Caucasian opinion only, was that the Oriental was less sensitive, and
therefore was not entitled to as much credit for withstanding pain as
the self-adjudged, more-sensitive Westerner.

The truth of the matter is, that there is a limit to actual
pain within the power of any one to endure, if the element of
fearthought-of-more-pain is eliminated, so that the absorbing
heroism of the patriot--almost courting torture for the honor of his
cause--puts the element of fearthought out of the case, and leaves only
the actual sensation to be suffered. Pain is undoubtedly intended as a
warning of disordered conditions, and not as a punishment, and, having
performed its mission, is relieved by a kind paralysis before the shock
is too severe for human endurance.

This is the beneficent provision of the natural law, but when it comes
to the exercise of unnatural fearthought, there is no limit to the
torture a victim may impose upon himself, and, on a basis of a very
little real pain, build up most terrible suffering.

The author has tested the truth of this assertion personally.

Being condemned to submit to a dental operation of unusual severity,
the opportunity to experiment was gladly availed of, even at the
expense of comfort.

One special aggravation of the operation was the prying open of the
mouth, in order to build up from the root one of the teeth located
farthest back in the mouth. The mouth was not large enough to suit
the facile convenience of the dentist, and hence he made use of
all the skill and power he possessed to enlarge the cavity, and
having stretched it to the utmost, firm wedges held it open, without
possibility of protest, for three hours on a stretch; and on these
instruments and conditions of torture I had ample opportunity to
experiment; so sufficient--for all practical purposes--that I do not
feel it necessary to repeat the experiment, even in the interest of
scientific investigation.

The experiment proved, however, my contention, that even the greatest
possible pain is of itself not very severe, and that it requires but a
slight diversion to make one forget it, for the time being, entirely. I
was able, at any moment of the combined irritation, to concentrate my
mind upon some subject or object, and to lose the sense of pain out of
my consciousness altogether--and at will.

Major General O. O. Howard, U. S. A. (retired) has recently
corroborated, to the author, out of his own experience, the possibility
of forgetting pain through slight diversion. He lost an arm during
the Civil War, and in the process of recovery some of the nerve-ends
were not properly cicatrized, so that ever since the wound healed the
General has not been free from the sensation of pain, whenever his mind
has reverted to it, and yet he is able at any time to forget it by
change of thought.

In like manner, fear-of-trouble is the major part of all the so-called
trouble that is experienced. As intimated in the "definitions,"
under the caption of "Trouble," there are few real conditions that
are very uncomfortable, if apprehension of still more uncomfortable
conditions is not imported to exaggerate the existing discomfort. Fear
of freezing to death or of drowning may be made very terrible, for
instance, whereas the end in freezing and in drowning is known to be
so comfortable, and even blissful, that those who are on the point of
passing out of life by those means dislike to be called back to life

The heroism of mothers in the event of child-birth is too well known to
call for reference, but there is the greatest difference in the ease
or in the discomfort of the condition attending the process, which
is largely influenced by the feeling of welcome or the attitude of
aversion with which the new-comer is greeted by the mother.

The point-of-view has much to do with the sting of pain. Whoever has
suffered that severest of all spankings, the water spanking incident to
a clumsy dive, or a wrongly-calculated somersault into the water from
a wharf, or from a natatorium springboard, will remember that the pain
of it is not half so hard to bear as the form of parental correction
called by the same name, that in itself is not nearly so severe.

Sensitiveness to pain is largely due to the fear of pain, and a
reversal of the accustomed attitude towards fear will have an immediate
effect upon the severity of pain by mitigating much of its sting.
Christian scientists, mental scientists, spiritual scientists, faith
curists, and all others who practice mental therapeutics in physical
diseases, escape much suffering in this way, and the happy result of
this attitude towards pain serves to strengthen their faith.

Whatever the cause of the relief, it is good, for it teaches, in a most
practical way, the potency of thought in overcoming, or, dismissing,
real pain as well as all imaginary evil, and also the possibility
of eliminating fearthought from the mental equipment, by showing
how impotent to harm are the realities that inspire it, when it is
prevented from exaggerating them.


There are some persons, in fact, a great many persons, who are not
happy unless they have real or fancied cause for complaint. Martyrdom
is the recreation of such people and they are liable to be more greedy
for recreation than those whose recreation is of a joyous sort.

It is certainly a misplaced kindness to impose unwelcome attentions on
any one. In the category of nuisances unwelcome attentions are perhaps
the most disagreeable, and to cram joy down the maw of one who has no
taste for it, is as rude, and even vulgar, as insisting that he shall
eat something that is nauseating to him.

It is true that persons who gloat over misery; who love to mope about
in grave-yards; and are forever telling grewsome tales for the
supposed delectation of their victims, are not as agreeable to others
as they seem to be to themselves, and their presence at festivals and
other ostensibly joyous occasions may be looked on as discordant, and,
as such, out of place.

In these times of license, which are sometime mistaken for times of
unusual liberty, it is not for anyone to define what is altogether
bad, nor to confine good, nor good taste, within too narrow limits;
neither is it generous to prescribe anything that shall be universally
eaten or worn; and, above all liberties, the liberty to wear a smile
or a frown should prevail; but it is within the province of organized
society to put its stamp of approval or disapproval on the time and
place for appropriate use of them. Certain costumes are suitable in
certain places and not suitable in others. For example, the bathing
suit and the night-robe have uses that are appropriate for their
special purposes, but they would not be tolerated on the street by the
police, and it would be no greater curtailment of liberty to order that
frowns shall be worn only in dark places and not be permitted to cloud
the sunlight, than that undue levity should be tabooed on occasions
considered to be serious. If such prescription were to be imposed, it
would be necessary, of course, to furnish dark places at appropriate,
or, rather, convenient intervals, for the use of the miserably
inclined, in the same way that spittoons are provided for the use of
those who must expectorate sputum.

Liberty is so precious a thing that it must be protected as the holiest
of our possessions, and even if it lap over into the debatable ground
sometimes called license, it should yet be protected, and therefore
the permission to wear frowns in appropriate places and to enjoy being
miserable in the privacy of one's own chamber should be respected;
on the street, or anywhere in public, however, they should not be
tolerated, for they are harmful generally, and particularly injurious
to children.

As individuals, those of us who accept God's promises as truths, who
prefer to live in the sunlight rather than in a cave, who glorify
Appreciation as the first and best suggestion in the language, who
believe that growth is the object of life, that its fallow field is
harmony, and that its fruit is happiness, and also those of us who, by
comparison of conditions have learned to believe that our pessimistic
friends can be happier than they are, and can become better companions
and citizens by a change of attitude towards life, although we may
not pass laws of restriction against the frown-habit or against the
misery-habit, can use the gentle method of counter-suggestion to good
effect, and even go so far as to laugh at and otherwise ridicule the
misery-habit, if by thus doing we may possibly correct that which logic
has failed to cure.

From long observation it has become evident that the misery-habit feeds
on sympathy. Children, who are the best examples of honest expression
that we have, whereby to see ourselves in an unartificial light, will
not continue a mad or a surly crying spell if they are sure it is not
producing a sympathetic effect. If they think they are not heard they
will at once cease crying. In the same way, grown persons who practice
the misery-habit in public take a rest when they are unobserved.
They try to hide it, but they are frequently caught in the act of
unbuttoning their pouts, and thereby allowing their faces a rest, as
soon as they have thought themselves out of sight. We must believe,
if this observation be correct, that the object of pessimism, or, the
misery-habit, is generally to secure, by dishonest means, selfish
attentions that are not earned, and for which no value is given. There
are cases no doubt where the misery-habit has been acquired by contact
with respected ones who have been the cause of perverse suggestions too
strong to be resisted, and for such there can only be pity, and in the
cure of whom gentle and loving suggestion should be used, but to the
perverse and the chronic practicers of the misery-habit, no toleration
is good, for it is on that, and unmerited sympathy, that they live and
thrive. On such, all of the misery possible to be scraped up from the
discords of life should be dumped, and they should be condemned to herd
together, and if it were possible, they should be isolated, as lepers
are isolated, from healthy society.

Sometimes the victim of the misery-habit practices the habit only
within the family. This is especially severe on the family, and is
much more difficult to treat. The family is at once the seat of the
greatest liberty, and the home and breeding-ground of the greatest
tyranny. The family is supposed to be under the holy protection of the
divine principle of love, but if that principle is not a possession
of the family, there is no protection whatever from most inhuman
practices, but instead a license to the cultivation of most discordant
passions. It is in the family that mollygrubs are grown and tolerated.
It is in the family that one cannot get rid of them by running away,
for the family, like the poor, you have with you always. And who would
have it otherwise? The whole tendency of civilization is to appreciate
the family more and more, and to cultivate respect for the family model
as the basis of good government. But it is the very security of the
natural, and therefore indissoluble, bonds that gives the selfishly
inclined opportunity to practice the misery-habit without fear of being
thrown out, left behind, cremated or otherwise gotten rid of, as dead
and disagreeable matter is usually treated, in civilized communities.

The symptoms of the misery-habit, or martyr-habit, are easy to
detect, for while they may be cultivated and laboriously practiced
in private, they are intended to be seen, and are displayed at times
when they are calculated to be most conspicuous. The victim of the
martyr-habit is usually an industrious person. He, or possibly she,
will perform any amount of necessary, and even unnecessary, manual
labor, in order to exhibit martyr-like fatigue; is always hanging
behind in order to be slighted; condemns attentions honestly intended
as perfunctory politeness; interprets praise as being patronage;
finds any part of a chicken served him at the family table the worst
piece, and at the same time assures the carver that he has been unduly
partial or over-generous--but, with a tone of voice or an expression
of countenance that belies the utterance. A common phrase of the
afflicted martyrite is, "Don't mind me," and hysterics is the favorite
amusement, while pain and trouble are the chief stock in trade. And is
there a remedy? Yes.

If Christianity were to be measured by the optimism of the Master,
if the gauge of optimism prescribed by the Master were to be used
to measure professing Christians for the name; if cause and effect
were to be placed in their true relation to each other, and the
ills we cultivate were to be classed as self-imposed causes and not
effects; and if the unnecessary and unprofitable were to be ranked
as not-respectable; the misery-habit or martyr-habit would cease
to be fashionable, mollygrubs would disappear, and the principal
breeding-ground of pessimism--the family--would be purified, as
becoming to its holy office.


If a queer sort of human being, dressed in a costume we had never
seen before, and hailing from some island we had never heard of, were
to land on our shores and ask our protection and the privilege of
teaching the religion of his people; if he were to learn our language
sufficiently to convey his ideas to us; if he were to have printed the
formulas of his religion, and, among them, his deity's commandments
to men; if the first of these commandments were to read, "Thou shalt
not strike a woman," what would we say to such a commandment? and
what would we think of a people who found it necessary to have such a

Our question would naturally be, "Do the people of your country _ever_
strike women?"

In our particular state of chivalric civilization, striking women
is one of the things so entirely out of the question that we do not
consider it even a possibility, except in cases of insanity or of
drunkenness, where the brute of the moment is not responsible for his

The very fact of its being an impossible, and therefore unmentionable,
crime is the strongest suggestion against it.

If "Thou shalt not strike a woman" were listed in the category of
commandments, and were constantly repeated as something hard to resist,
and hence commanded against, I believe the crime would become common in
circles where it is not thought of as possible now.

The best thing to do with a condemned thing is to cover it up, seal
it up, and relegate it to the custody of the awful, unwritten law of
unanimous disapproval.

It is said that when the Jesuit fathers went to Japan at the end of
the sixteenth century they were warmly welcomed, and not only were
permitted but invited to teach their religion.

One of the first things they did was to have the ten commandments of
the old Mosaic law printed in Japanese, in the form of what we call a
tract, and distributed among the people.

Reading was then, as now, a common accomplishment with the Japanese,
and they were interested in the tract. They did not quite understand
its purport, however, and one of their number was delegated to ask for
an explanation.

Japan is the land, above all others, where poetry and flowers and
idealism and art and other refinements are cherished and appreciated.
Poetry, in Japan, is sometimes so idealistic that it is somewhat vague
to any but the poet. It is the custom, therefore, to consider that
anything not quite comprehensible must be poetry; and not understanding
the tract of the fathers, the Japanese naturally thought it to be a
specimen of Portuguese poetry.

Approaching one of the fathers, the spokesman of the people bowed with
accustomed politeness and said: "I trust you will pardon the wretched
ignorance and dullness of my humble self, but the great interest of my
companions, as well of myself, in your poem, impels us to ask you to
interpret to us the great depth of its beauteous crystalline sweetness,
in order that we may enjoy it as it is worthy of being enjoyed."

The father was shocked to hear his sacred commandments classed as
worldly poetry, and, drawing himself up to the full impressiveness of
holy indignation, replied, "That is not poetry; that is what our God
commands that we _must not_ do."

"Sayo de go zarimasu, gomen na sai," answered the spokesman in the
polite idiom of his country; "but--_do the people of your country ever
do these things?_"

Whether the Japanese are, or were three hundred years ago, as exempt
from evil as the enquiry about the ten commandments would imply,
matters not. The rebuke was well merited and taught a great, good
lesson. We are the sum of our impressions, and the suggestions we
receive from experience are the source of our impressions. Some
suggestions are so respected that they make deep impressions, notably
the suggestions given us by our parents at our most impressionable age;
but all suggestions have some weight, and to such purpose that a thing
we know to be untrue becomes a reality to us by constant repetition,
as attested by the common expression, "He has told that story so many
times that he has come to believe it himself."

There is scarcely any difference of opinion about the justice of the
ten commandments; but the constant repetition of "_you must not_" is
like shaking a red rag before a wild bull, to many self-assertive
children; whereas, if the things to be commanded against were
understood to be _impossible_, and therefore _unmentionable_, the
commandments would come to fit crimes that had become as much out of
date to us now as is the crime of striking women.

We have constant evidence of the fact that beliefs, or, rather,
habits-of-belief, follow persistent assertion, and that character is
largely molded by existing formulas as well as other influences of our

Without desire to criticise the formulas of any creeds, except in the
way of counter-suggestion, I would ask, "What would be the probable
effect of teaching the constant repetition of the eleventh commandment
in place of the older ten?--'A new commandment I give unto you, that
you love one another.'" It is impossible to love and to hate at the
same time. It is impossible to obey the eleventh commandment and
disobey any of the ten at the same time. Is it not better practice of
suggestion, in order to form habit-of-thought, to repeat the eleventh
commandment eleven times, than to repeat each of the ten once and the
eleventh only once?

It is true that the easy way to attain good is to _cease to have evil_,
but, it is a poor way to cease to have evil to nurse it in the memory
as a thing _difficult not to have_.

If there is to be repetition of anything, it is better that it should
be of such suggestions as "Appreciation" and "Love."

The mind is as amenable to the force of habit as are any of the
physical members of the body. The soul is much more amenable to
suggestion than either, for it is much more impressionable. If you
were teaching a child to play the piano, would you have him run all
the scales, or, rather, combinations of notes that do not form scales,
that are to be avoided in music, in order to teach him the habit of
_not_ playing them? Would it be good teaching to have him habituate his
fingers to the sequence of false scales as well as to the sequence of
true scales? May not the constant repetition of the commandments that
refer to lewd practices suggest thoughts about lewdness that never
would come to young minds by other means, and therefore taint pure
thought, in brutal fashion, by vile suggestion?


Suppose two men of equal physical strength were to start in a
thousand-mile bicycle race. Suppose one of the men were to greet
the passing of each mile-post in this wise: "Only nine hundred and
ninety-nine miles more; only nine hundred and ninety miles more," or
whatever the distance covered might be at the time. Suppose the other
were to greet the same mile-posts otherwise, as "only one mile;" or,
"hang it, only ten miles." Which racer would win?

In effect, one of the men would be going down hill and the other would
be going up hill, and just that difference of approach would win the
race for the person who was rolling down from one thousand miles to one
mile, from the person who was struggling along the upward course from
one mile to a thousand miles.

Suppose two men were to each feel a pain in the joint of his big toe.
Suppose one of the attacked ones were to greet the pain as follows:
"Well! I suppose that means the gout, and I am to be afflicted for the
balance of my life with that horrible disease. What have I done to
deserve such a fate? I suppose some of my ancestors are responsible
for this, but I will have to suffer for it all the same." Suppose the
other victim were to greet the same symptom in himself differently,
as follows: "Hello, old fellow, what does all this mean?--too much
rich food, too much rich wine, too much of everything that is good to
the taste and bad for the stomach. Well, I might have expected it.
Am ever so much obliged to you, Mr. Pain, for having warned me so
promptly; I'll take the hint and correct the error before the trouble
gets seated. Keep me well posted, Mr. Pain. If the disorder does not
disappear, please keep on prodding me so that I will know if I am
doing the right thing or the wrong thing towards it." Which of these
men would recover more quickly, and which of them would suffer more

There are always different points-of-view and different attitudes
towards every problem of life. The different points-of-view are always
in competition, and, other conditions being equal, winning or losing is
a question of attitude. The attitude that is directed by appreciation,
gratitude, hope, trust, or any of the attributes of Forethought, will
always win, as against the attitude that is handicapped by any shade of

Life may be filled with disappointments or with successes merely by the
choice of point-of-view, the pessimistic point-of-view leading from
disappointment to disappointment, and the optimistic point of view
leading to a succession of successes. As a man thinks, so does he act,
and so does the world help him to act.

Evolution never places obstacles in the _right_ road. A seeming
obstacle may be but a hurdle, the clearing of which may win a prize in
the life race. Some one has said that the supreme obstacle in life is
surmounted by aid of the progressively difficult smaller obstacles that
are overcome with increasing ease, and which, if their beneficent uses
are known, become only hurdles instead of obstructions.

"Set 'em up again; they are all down but nine," said, in the spirit of
hopeful determination, has won games for many contestants.

It is the point-of-view that determines whether an obstacle is a hurdle
or an obstruction, or whether the obstruction, if it be such, is in
the _wrong_ road or not. If a traveler on life's road starts with an
optimistic point-of-view he will enjoy obstacles as hurdles, or he
will greet obstructions with pleasure, as being Providentially placed
in the _wrong_ road. In any case he will be happy about it, and his
happiness will be the best possible stimulant in aiding him to clear
hurdles or to seek new paths to pleasant places.

The optimistic and pessimistic points-of-view are the means by which
the concordant and discordant notes in life are sounded. The merit or
demerit of things lies less within the things themselves, as far as the
observer is concerned, than in his ability to accept them complacently,
if inevitable, and to mould or to shape them to profitable and
agreeable uses, rather than to suffer them as unprofitable and
disagreeable. For example, it is profitable to look upon all persons
and upon all experiences as teachers, but to reserve the superiority
of choosing to be guided by them or warned by them according as the
quality of the teaching is good or bad.

There are proverbs in all languages that teach the preference of
the optimistic point-of-view, but they will avail little as long
as fearthought is tolerated as a necessary and respectable thing.
Experience endorses the proverbs and discredits the necessity and
respectability of fearthought.

The Japanese have a proverb, born of the optimistic point-of-view, that
is very useful to them, inasmuch as the light wood-construction of
their houses invites frequent fires and sweeping losses in consequence.
After a fire it is fashionable in Japan for sufferers to greet each
other in sympathy with the truism, always accompanied by a smile, "Not
much trouble to move," and then they all pitch in to assist as much as
possible to rehabilitate each other through kind attentions that really
make the fires but hot-bed nurseries of altruistic sympathy, in which
there is more joy than in the greatest accumulation of possessions.

After the war--the recent sectional dispute, whose theater of
destruction was in the Southern States of America--many of the
families of the ante-bellum slave aristocracy were mainly reduced in
possessions, and deprived of some of the means of ostentation, and in
rare instances, of the necessary means of comfort; but they had been
defeated in their Cause, and many of them settled into a state of
depression that was more cruel to them than all the reverses of the
war. Nature continued to be as kind, the seasons smiled on the crops
with unvarying regularity, and the physical scars of war were soon
healed and overgrown, but the disappointed ones heeded not the return
of material prosperity. They focused their point-of-view upon the past,
and refused to see the smiles and the warmth of the present and the
promise of the future.

Property aristocracy always creates a false pride, in which the
point-of-view is distorted.

It will undoubtedly be the same with the name-proud Greeks as it
was with the property-proud Southrons, and bespeaks little for the
respectability of a pride that afflicts its victims more seriously than
the destruction of property.

It is a meritorious pride that rises superior to defeat, and after
saying "Thy Will Be Done" adds, "Teach Thou Me Appreciation," and
begins the pursuit of peace anew with the point of view directed by
optimism and not by pessimism.

I have seen whole families, suffering from self-imposed humiliation
and depression, leap into new life, new growth, and new happiness at
a change of the point-of-view. The Southerners are, above all other
Americans, chivalrous and loyally American in their natures. They are
also generally religious, and cling to the teachings of their parents.
In focusing their point-of-view upon the past, and, nursing the
sting of defeat, they have thought that they were conserving filial
regard, chivalry and religion, and they have held to the distorted
point-of-view with loyal purpose. A change of the point-of-view,
rising superior to disappointment, more nearly satisfied filial
pride, while Christian optimism and gratitude more nearly became
the profession of religion than the fault-finding dictated by the
antiquated point-of-view. Finding fault with the happenings of the past
is as much blasphemy as any other disapproval of the Almighty, and yet
blasphemy is regarded as the wickedest of sins in religious estimation;
and, at the same time, loading up with a burden of depression and
self-humiliation is the most unprofitable form of self-abuse known to

It is better to have an intelligent and optimistic command of the
point-of-view and hold title to nothing, than to have possessions
valued at millions, and not count this as the richest possession of
them all. If anything seem to be wrong with you, first examine the
point-of-view. If you do this conscientiously, you will probably find
the fault therein and seek a remedy by _changing the point-of-view_.


A sewer is a channel for the conveyance of disagreeable matter.

Any person who receives and carries mean report or suspicion of his
neighbor is therefore a human sewer.

A good sewer is a good thing. It receives disagreeable matter and
carries it along, hidden from sight and away from the other senses, to
some remote place, and discharges it there.

A leaky sewer is an abomination.

Human sewers usually leak. They take delight in letting out the
disagreeable matter they are carrying, at every street corner, in every
parlor, and in the midst of the multitude, wherever they may chance to
be. The characteristic of the human sewer is that it is a leaky sewer.
By its leaks it is known.

Human sewers themselves generally create much of their sewage.

I once had a friend, an otherwise good fellow, who had acquired the
habit of collecting and distributing social sewage. He was not amenable
to logical suggestion against the habit. He held the idea that a spade
should be called a spade, and that if disagreeable things existed,
honesty required that they should be discussed. One day, when my friend
was carrying an unusually heavy load of sewage, and was distributing it
freely, this thought came into my mind, and I gave it utterance. "You
remind me of a sewer," said I.

There might have been a serious impairment of our friendship as the
result of my utterance, for my friend is full of so-called "spirit,"
had I not immediately followed my offensive remark by an apology, and a
brotherly explanation somewhat in the vein as above.

The good effect of the comparison on my friend is my excuse for
introducing it here. What logic and persuasion had not been able to
accomplish, offensive comparison accomplished.

My friend is too self-respecting to allow himself to be in any way
related to a leaky sewer, and has reformed beautifully. A short time
since, in speaking of the incident, he acknowledged its effectiveness
by saying, "Every time I think of anything mean I fancy I can smell


It is an excellent rule to follow to call Suspicion a liar five times
before basing judgment upon its testimony.

If you will take the trouble to investigate the average accuracy of
your suspicions, you will note that they are wrong in so many cases
that they are not a safe guide, and are generally unjust accusers.

While the person who harbors the suspicion is the worst sufferer in the
end, when the accusations have been proved to be groundless, there is
always a possibility of injustice, that, falling on servants or others
holding inferior positions, is exceedingly cruel.

How often, in the household or in the hotel apartment, is a carelessly
mislaid ring the cause of great unhappiness to both mistress and maid,
because of the ready mischief of Fearthought and its attendant imp,

It is an axiom of the detective service, that untrained suspicion
generally takes the wrong scent, and that it usually saves time to look
in some other direction for the culprit, than in that pointed out by
the accuser.

The elimination of the seeds of Fearthought from the mind, the
possibility of which is the contention of my theory, will carry with
it suspicion, and relieve one of endless chance of doing and suffering
injustice, but if emancipation should, unfortunately, not have been
accomplished, it is an excellent rule to follow, to meet Suspicion with
suspicion, and call it "liar"! five times, before making accusation on
its testimony.


A person more frequently lies when he says "I can't" than when he says
"I can." There are, to be sure, more things that one cannot do than
there are that he can do, because the ability of the strongest and most
skillful is comparatively limited; but the person who is in the habit
of saying "I can't" usually says it about the wrong thing or at the
wrong time.

Whenever a person says that he cannot do a thing that God has made it
possible for him to do, and which he knows to be possible, he is not
only a liar, but also a blasphemer.

If one is asked to climb a tree or lift a very heavy weight, there may
be reason for saying "I can't," because of lack of ability, strength or
practice. For the same reason, difficult "runs" on a piano, perilous
feats of balancing or turning in gymnastics, and even a great many
simple things that are easy to the accustomed, may be impossible to the
unaccustomed without certain practice, and with reference to them it is
reasonable to say, "I can't."

If, however, one is asked _not_ to climb a tree, or _not_ to lift a
weight, or _not_ to perform a "run" on a piano, there is no excuse
for saying, "I cannot _not_ do it," for it is as illogical as it is
ungrammatical, and as false as any other lie.

Applied to mental accomplishment, it is even more illogical and false,
because thought is more pliable than muscle.

Not being evil is simply _not being evil_, and whoever says, "I cannot
_not_ be bad," is a liar. When he is asleep he proves the lie.

There are habits-of-desire which seem attractive to perverted taste,
that may need a strong counter-suggestion to correct, but there is
no habit-of-desire but what can easily be corrected by the right
counter-suggestion. For instance, drinking whisky habitually is
recognized to be a bad habit of perverted desire, but one habitual
drunkard I know of abjured whisky for life on account of having
discovered a dead fly in his glass.

Sometimes it requires a mania to cure a mania. Dr. H. Holbrook Curtis,
the eminent throat-specialist of New York, who has in his care, during
grand opera season, millions of dollars' worth of voices, and who makes
special study of the mental condition of his patients, once said to
me, "The only cure that I know of for dipsomania is religio-mania."
This same assertion is frequently made in quite a different way,
but to the same effect. Dr. Curtis did not mean by religio-mania
religious _appreciation_; neither did he mean by dipsomania, temperate
use of stimulants. He referred to the intemperate emotion and the
morbid taste. The practice of drinking unduly because of the social
temptation of it may be cured by logical suggestion, but a mania may
be amenable only to a mania. There is, however, no bad habit but that
can be corrected by _some_ means, and as there is some remedy for
every separate phase of evil, it should be considered not respectable
to say, "I cannot _not_ do"; and, as measure of respectability is the
highest social desideratum in the present age, the best weapon to be
used against the toleration of evil in one's self or in others is a
general protest against it on the score of its being unnecessary and

In my experiments I have used all sorts of means of suggestion with
which to reach perverse habits of evil thought. As stated elsewhere,
offensive comparisons and ridicule are more frequently effective
than reason or logic, and, as such, are often necessary, in the same
way that offensive medicines are sometimes effective in removing
indigestible matter from the stomach,--for example, ipecac.

I had a friend who was in the habit of saying "I can't" to almost
everything. The habit-of-opposition was so strong that it was the
first to assert itself on every occasion. The attitude of opposition
was strengthened by the perverse idea that brutal frankness is an
expression of honesty, and hence reference to his honesty or dishonesty
was a tender point of etiquette with my friend. To touch this tender
spot, and administer the strong suggestion--medicine--necessary in the
case, I hit upon this expedient:

Whenever my friend said "I can't" to a proposition which it did not
fit, I immediately ejaculated "Liar!" At first there was some danger
attending my experiment, but I took the precaution to be out of reach,
and the fact that my intention was good assured me ultimate pardon.

At first my offensive criticism was frequently necessary, but it became
less and less so, till at last the cure is so complete that the once
favorite expression, "I can't," is as disagreeable to my friend, as
must have been the dead fly in the glass of the drunkard previously
mentioned, that was the means of curing him of a deeply rooted habit.


One evening, at a meeting of the "Ganglionics," in the city of New
Orleans, I asked the president of the club, Dr. William Benjamin Smith,
the question, "Why is it that the unexpected generally happens?" His
reply, which induced the caption to this chapter, was, "Because the
expected is only one thing, while the unexpected may be a million

This is really, as well as figuratively, true, and, being true, what
idiots are we to waste our time and paralyze our energies, by thinking
fearthought into the future, on a million-to-one chance of its hitting
the mark.

There is one bull's-eye that we are sure to hit if we aim at it
constantly and long enough. Death is the one universal bull's-eye that
figures in every life. At the same time that we are sure of hitting it,
we know by the experience of others that we do not realize death when
it actually comes, for Nature kindly administers an anæsthetic just
before death, and sometimes long before. Then why should we fear even

Persons who have been at the open door of the unexplored state called
death say that a delightful feeling of rest comes over the emigrant,
and that entry into the next state is like being in a beautiful dream.

If this be so, there is also nothing disagreeable in death--only in the
fearthought about it--and hence the one only bull's-eye we have been
sure of hitting--the cause of fear of death--does not exist, except in
our hopes or our fears.

Many persons who are in the habit of apprehending cause for fearthought
about the future, and who spend much of their time in worry, would not
like to be put down in the category of false prophets, and yet their
apprehension must be false in the ratio of chances of a million to one.

Thought about chance, as related to forethought, and from the
point-of-view of the speculator or gambler, suggests the absurdity of
wasting any good coin--calm and happiness--by "laying it on"--betting
on--fear. The chances against having "coppered" the right fear are
not only _not even_, but are ten to one against--an hundred to one
against--or more--never less. Even if you should win by correctly
guessing a fear, you would get back again none of the happiness that
you had sacrificed--would not even get your "stake" back.

As a matter of actual experience, the following incident is a good
example: A young man employed in a publishing house, where the
proprietor was afflicted with the fuss-and-fret-habit, contracted the
disease, and unconsciously became a victim to its toils. Robust good
health began to give way to languor that induced dyspepsia and other
contingent disorders, until suicide stared the young man in the face
and haunted his dreams.

One day some one whispered a suspicion in the young employee's ear
that was directed at worry and anger as the causes of his ill-health
and unhappiness and the thought led his systematic habits-of-business
to suggest "keeping tab" on at least one of the suspects, to see if
it were the liar and thief, as charged. Each day, when worry made its
predictions, record of them was carefully kept, and at the end of the
month the reports were checked up by results. _Only three per cent. of
the predictions were even remotely realized!_

The old proprietor of the business, through whom the contagious
poison started, is dead, and the happy young menticulturist owns the
business, which has become very successful by influence of the sunny
optimism of its new owner, which attracts trade unconsciously to it.


The merit of loving is in the act, and should not--cannot--be qualified
by the merit or demerit of the object under consideration.

There may be more effort required, perhaps, in loving something that
seems to us unlovely, but no more virtue in so doing, as loving, like
virtue, is its own reward.

God-love does not discriminate. It is, therefore, ungodly to
discriminate. In the performance of the Man-Nature partnership-function
of "divine selection" in the harmonizing of things that are
antagonistic to each other and to Man--selecting for survival those
things that are not deterrent to the harmonious growth and happiness
of Man--if selection is to be made, it should be done in the spirit of
calm justice, and not in the spirit of hate, for, as love blesses the
lover, so does hate react upon the hater.

We cannot afford _not to love_.

There are animals and insects that seem to us to be undesirable and
prejudicial to the harmony we are seeking to secure, that may serve
most excellent purposes in relation to existing conditions. They are
frequently a warning against unfavorable conditions, in the same way
that pain is a warning against diseased conditions in the body. In the
same way, crime is a warning against social or political conditions
which invite or compel crime, and remedy should be sought in change of
the conditions in preference to the punishment of the crime. I believe
that a change of our point-of-view--our attitude towards causes and
effects--would find punishment generally unnecessary, and, as such,

There is, then, a double reason why we should hate nothing. In the
first place, it is probable that we are hating the wrong thing, and
thereby are unjust, and we are certainly doing injury to ourselves by
nursing the feeling of hatred.

Disapproval--calm disapproval--is a better judge in the exercise of
"divine selection" than angry antagonism. Pity, as well as love, is a
divine attribute, but hate is an attribute of the devil. Pity suggests
change of conditions producing inharmonious results. Hate suggests
punishment of the victim of the inharmony.

In its relation to personal comfort, the practice of not permitting
hate, nor annoyance, nor irritation, nor repulsion to possess one's
feelings, will bring greatest good results. Take the mosquito pest, for
instance: One who begins to feel irritation at the sound made by the
wings of the insect, is already creating within himself a condition
favorable to inflammation from the effects of the bite. Many who
suffer by mosquitos admit that the buzz is worse, to them, than the
bite, which is proof of a purely mental and unnecessary affliction.

There was a time in my boyhood when mosquitos poisoned and annoyed me
beyond endurance. Each bite represented a great itching welt, and the
buzzing was full of terror in consequence, or, more likely, in the
light of present knowledge, the buzzing inspired fearthought or dread,
and the bite was very poisonous in consequence. At present, mosquito
bites are not poisonous to me, and mosquito sounds are no longer
disagreeable. I do not remember when the deliverance came. Possibly the
cure came through intimate acquaintance. I have lived in localities
where the mosquito thrives all the year round, and in such numbers
that he tires his victims into a state of non-resistance, and in the
calm of non-resistance, physical and mental irritations cease. This
is sometimes called acclimatization, but it proves the contention,
whichever way it is interpreted.

In the practice of my freedom from what was once a great affliction,
I sometimes brave a swarm of mosquitos by sleeping in their presence
without drawing the bar. If the mosquitos light on me freely, I find
comfort in the evidence of my popularity, and in the fact that I am
probably being of service to something, or somebody, by possibly
diverting attentions that would not be appreciated in like manner by
them. In the morning, when I look in the glass and note the little
red spots that the bites have left, but of which I am not otherwise
conscious, I consider them as a record of my hospitality, and am proud
of them, as the German corps student is proud of the scars on his face,
that are a record of equally foolish bravery or exposure, taken out of
his university course at Heidelberg or elsewhere. My braving of the
mosquitos would certainly be classed as foolish, except as a test
of superiority, but the pin-point red spots soon disappear and do no
permanent harm.

Mosquitos are said to breed in malarial conditions, and for the purpose
of absorbing the malaria. Flies do not exist except in conditions of
ferment, and are of greatest service in carrying it away. Roaches
are splendid scavengers, and are a result, and not a cause, of
unclean conditions. Our warfare should be waged against unclean and
inharmonious conditions, and not against the purifiers and harmonizers
of the conditions.

It is not a difficult matter to rid one's self of repulsions if the
point-of-view is changed. I presume that the most generally detested
creature that is not altogether deadly in its venom is the bedbug.
The bedbug is more of a tradition than a fact, and many of those who
shudder at mention of him have never seen one of his kind. I am sure
that none of his enemies have much if, any, acquaintance with him, as
to the color of his eyes, his habits of thrift, his amiability in his
family and other qualities that serve to make a creature attractive and
respectable within his sphere.

The truth about this much despised creature is that he is useful as
a warning against unclean conditions, and his odor and his bite are
his notes of warning. Instead of filling one's self with a feeling
of repulsion or anger or any other emotion that affects the free
circulation of the blood, and relaxes and disorders the tissues of the
body, at sight or mention of a bedbug, the discovery should elicit
the expression, "Thank you for the information." If it should happen
in one's own house, no hidden crack nor corner should escape an
overhauling to get rid of the cause of the bedbug's warning; or, if it
should happen in a hotel, there should be a change of hotel.

Mention is made of mosquitos and roaches and bedbugs in this
connection, not for the purpose of degrading the feeling of love by
applying it to things that are disagreeable, no matter what their
mission of usefulness, but to put stress upon the fact that one cannot
afford to hate anything. It is especially useful, in seeking to change
the point-of-view, to consider the greatest of causes of repulsion in
order to more easily reach the lesser causes, for the lesser fade of
themselves by the removal of the greater.

If you can learn not to hate a bedbug, to thank a roach for informing
you of unclean conditions and to endure mosquitos, you are pretty sure
to modify all prejudices by thus doing.


It is my own habit to read the last chapter of a book first and if the
summary of its contentions and deductions, which are sure to be found
in the closing chapter, interest me, I go carefully through the book
with the author to learn how he has reached his conclusions. I find,
upon enquiry, that many others do the same. This is made necessary
because of the vast number of books that are published and the
impossibility of learning by other than the easiest means more than a
small proportion of the ideas that are given out each year. There are
published, yearly, in English, twenty to thirty thousand volumes of new
matter, or new arrangements or new editions of old matter, so that to
read carefully only a catalogue of them would be a considerable task
for the ordinary reader.

This being the closing chapter of my book, and being especially
possessed of my subject and desirous of being understood, I may be
pardoned for offering a brief syllabus of my effort as a benediction.

I have endeavored to show that fearthought is the arch-enemy of
civilized man. Through the fears of his progenitors, it is the cause
of the weaknesses he inherits; and through his own permission, it is
also the cause of his personally acquired ill health, ill success,
discontent and unhappiness. Fearthought, however, can be eradicated
from the habit-of-thought of even the most timid persons, who are
cursed by the hereditary affliction of fear, or by their own weak
habit-of-thought, by persistent counter-suggestion, as soon as they are
convinced of the possibility of freedom, and have thereby, learned the
profitable point-of-view regarding it. I have shown that forethought
becomes strong-thought as soon as fearthought, or weak-thought, is
separated from it; that the condition of harmony which is created by
the eradication of fearthought, is the normal condition in civilized
nature; that growth is immediate and strong within the harmonic
atmosphere thus created; that happiness is the certain result; and
that fearthought and its various expressions are the basic deterrents
to growth and happiness in man. That God, in the process of Evolution,
has developed Man to the point where he executes the Higher Law of
Harmony through the exercise of Divine Selection in modifying the brute
law of "the survival of the fittest" (or, strongest), and thereby
proves the "superiority of mind over matter." That God has created a
partnership between Growth and Man, which is properly distinguished
as the Man-Nature partnership. That the functions of the partners are
clearly defined by rigid limitations; Nature doing all the growing
without harmonizing or cultivating anything; while Man performs all of
the harmonizing or cultivating, but none of the growing. That Man's
only method of harmonizing or cultivating is through learning and
removing the deterrents to growth. That in watering plants, Man removes
the deterrent, drouth. That in building hot-houses, Man removes the
deterrent, cold. That in oiling machinery, Man removes the deterrent,
friction. That in refusing to be the bondman of fearthought and anger
and worry, Man escapes the only deterrents within himself, to harmony,
health, growth and happiness. And, that in cultivating Appreciation all
of the possibilities of Happiness are opened to him.

I have tried to show that one of the great deterrents to growth and
the acquisition of happiness is nursed by focussing the point-of-view
on worn-out traditions, instead of on the present accomplishments and
acceleration of progress in which all of the elements of happiness
rest. That while happiness is possible to all under present conditions,
indications point to the possibility, within the assured possession
of surplus wealth-of-means, that Altruism may soon "have an inning,"
during which conditions will be so rearranged that dire poverty and
unhappiness will be impossible to any but the perverse. That normal,
civilized human nature is _good_ nature, and that if conditions are
intelligently arranged most men will eagerly mold themselves into
good men to fit the conditions. That the Material Age has become so
rich that it can now afford leisure to give attention to the Higher
Self, and in so doing will soon refuse to permit any one born under
the prejudices and the protection of the Nation--the social family--to
be ignorant nor idle nor poor; that the era of the three great
A's--Appreciation, Attraction and Altruism--is upon us, and that it
will inaugurate the Age of the Higher Self, wherein Man will realize
that he is not simply the highest among animals, but is endowed with
divine possibilities, and cannot longer be respectable with only animal
characteristics. That the resetting of the gauge of respectability
rendered necessary by the Awakening, and the new conditions that
must grow out of it, will be above the toleration of anything that
is unaltruistic, as surely as the gauge of the present is above the
toleration of petty thieving and convicted perjury.

There is not only hope, but there _is assurance_, of harmonic
conditions in the signs of the times and in the constantly increasing
acceleration of progress.


It is argued that the Stoics and other philosophers of ancient Greece
attained the perfection of self-control, and successfully suppressed,
and even eliminated, all of the passions and desires which so commonly
dominate man, and attained thereby a state of happiness that is quite
unknown in the present times of ostentation and ambition; but that the
result was a state of lethargic indifference, that became more fatal to
growth and progress in the end than any known condition of tumult and
competition in the history of the race.

This is undoubtedly a just arraignment of the result of the Grecian
philosophical teachings but, at the same time, the reason for so
unhappy a result is not difficult to find.

The Greeks cultivated self-control and the harmonic conditions growing
out of it as an end, and not as a preparatory means to growth. They
prepared a weedless and wormless soil within the mind, but in it
planted poppies, breathed of their poisonous perfume, and slept the
sleep of indifference, which leads to the sleep called death.

Since the time of the Stoics, the world has been told by the God-Man
Jesus of Nazareth, that living means growing, that true happiness
is gained only through works in the service of something, that the
necessary attribute of perfect manhood is spontaneous altruism, and
that there is no other road towards growth, refinement, spirituality
and happiness than along the way made easy by consistent altruism.

During the time that has passed since the power and glory of Hellas
began to wane, mankind has had experience with the forces of nature
and the efficacy of machinery to teach the great universal law of
compensation, which is also the law of happiness. This great law
prescribes that there shall be no balance without support or motion,
no poise without alertness, no life without growth, and no happiness
without service.

Learning a wise lesson from the law of compensation, man has come
to appreciate the value of a wormless and weedless soil, but he has
learned to plant in it trees that bear altruistic fruit, instead of the
poppy of sloth and indifference, which is now classed as a poisonous
weed; he has learned to clean and polish the journals of his engines
and has invented balance wheels to regulate, and ball bearings to
accelerate, their power; but not for the purpose of idleness.

The decadence of Greek manhood was not the result of culture, but
the result of the uses to which it was put, and hence we should not
condemn culture, nor cultivate friction, as an antidote for decadence,
because Greek civilization did not defend itself against assault
and decay, but, rather, let us emulate the good they achieved, and
cultivate the power they attained, and use them as _a beginning and not
as an end_.





Our sanitarians are doing a good work in exploring the physical causes
of disease, and endeavoring to protect the individual and the public
health. But there is a higher and larger sphere of causes which they
have seldom penetrated, and of whose existence even many of them seem
to be ignorant. I allude to the extraordinary influence of affection
and thought, or of emotion and ideas, in the causation and prevention
of disease.

The body is a mirror, in which all the states of the soul are
reflected. We are familiar with the wonderful effects of the will,
the passions, the emotions, of the imagination, sympathy, hope, fear,
faith, and confident expectation upon the physical system. We are
accustomed to regard the phenomena as illustrations of the fact that
the soul can, under certain circumstances, act powerfully upon the
body, with the tacit assumption, however, as a general rule, that the
body executes all the functions by chemical or mechanical law, without
the necessary intervention of any mental influences whatever. This is
the great illusion of the materialist.

Imagination, intellect, will, emotion, faith, hope, expectation,
etc., are only states or modes of the soul's own life, and they are
in perpetual activity, whether we are conscious of it or not. The
operations of the soul of which we are not conscious, are almost
infinite in comparison with the very small portion of them which comes
at any moment within the range of our external consciousness. The soul
organizes its own body in the womb of the mother, holds all its parts
together in due order and functional activity during life, and when he
quits it at death, its material tenement falls into dissolution.

The mind of man is constantly at work, silently pervading every tissue
of his body by its vital influence, repeating itself in every function,
throbbing in the heart, breathing in the lungs, reflecting itself in
the blood, weaving its own form into every act of nutrition, realizing
its own life in every sensation, and working its own will in every
motion. The power of the mind over the body indeed! There is no power
in the body, but in the mind, for the body is the mind, translated into
flesh and blood.

When a limb is broken--the bones shattered, the flesh torn, the
blood-vessels severed, the nerves lacerated, what can the surgeon or
doctor do to repair the injury? A little outside mechanical work. He
ligates, he stitches, he plasters, he fixes the parts in apparatus so
they will remain motionless in the natural position. He can do no more.
The soul which creates the body and keeps it in health, repairs it when
injured. By her own occult forces she regulates the movement of the
blood and development of nerve power, the chemical decomposition and
re-combination, going on in every tissue, according to ideas and models
implanted upon her by the Divine Mind, the Over-Soul of the universe.

The old writers call this wonderful power the _vis medicatrix naturi_,
the curative power of nature. Swedenborg, for whom nature has no powers
underived from spiritual sources, teaches that this vital power is
the soul itself. His view that the soul itself acts unconsciously to
our perceptions in the development and conservation of the body is
advocated by Morell in his "Elements of Psychology," and is highly
spoken of by Professor William B. Carpenter.

When we have constructed a true psychological pathology, we shall
understand clearly why and how it is that fear can turn the hair gray
in a single night; that a mother's milk can be poisoned by a moment of
terror; that the heart may be paralyzed by a sudden joy or sorrow; that
dyspepsia, paralysis, and many other diseases are produced by mental
worry and fret and the brain-fag of overwork and anxiety. Yea, we will
understand that away back of all physical causation, the roots of our
disease originate in the spiritual conditions of the race, in our false
religions, our false philosophies, our false way of thinking, our false
relations to God and each other.

The most extensive of all the morbid mental conditions which reflect
themselves so disastrously on the human system, is the state of fear.
It has many degrees or gradations, from the state of extreme alarm,
fright, or terror, down to the slightest shade of apprehension
of impending evil. But all along the line it is the same thing--a
paralyzing impression upon the centers of life which can produce,
through the agency of the nervous system, a vast variety of morbid
symptoms in every tissue of the body.

We have very seldom reflected upon the fact that fear runs like a
baleful thread through the whole web of our life from beginning to end.
We are born into the atmosphere of fear and dread, and the mother who
bore us had lived in the same atmosphere for weeks and months before
we were born. We are surrounded in infancy and childhood by clouds of
fear and apprehension on the part of our parents, nurses, and friends.
As we advance in life we become, instinctively or by experience, afraid
of almost everything. We are afraid of our parents, afraid of our
teachers, afraid of our playmates, afraid of ghosts, afraid of rules
and regulations and punishments, afraid of the doctor, the dentist,
the surgeon. Our adult life is a state of chronic anxiety, which is
fear in a milder form. We are afraid of failure in business, afraid of
disappointments and mistakes, afraid of enemies, open or concealed;
afraid of poverty, afraid of public opinion, afraid of accidents, of
sickness, of death, and unhappiness after death. Man is like a haunted
animal from the cradle to the grave, the victim of real or imaginary
fears, not only his own, but those reflected upon him from the
superstitions, self-deceptions, sensory illusions, false beliefs and
concrete errors of the whole human race, past and present.

If fear produces disease, acute or chronic, suddenly or gradually,
through the correlations existing between the spirit and the body, how
can there be a genuinely and perfectly healthy man or woman in the
world? There is none.

That fear does produce all kinds of disease, has been frequently
observed and fully substantiated by the medical profession. Dr. Tuke,
in his admirable book, "Influence of the Mind upon the Body," cites
well authenticated instances of the following diseases as having been
produced by fear or fright: Insanity, idiocy, paralysis of various
muscles and organs, profuse perspirations, cholerina, jaundice, turning
of the hair gray in a short time, baldness, sudden decay of the teeth,
nervous shock followed by fatal anæmia, uterine troubles, malformation
of embryo through the mother, and even skin disease--erysipelas,
eczema, and impetigo.

We observe in this list that fear not only affects the mind and
the nervous and muscular tissues, but the molecular chemical
transformations of the organic network, even to the skin, the hair, and
the teeth. This might be expected of a passion which disturbs the whole
mind, which is represented or externalized in the whole body.

Dr. Tuke reiterates the fact which has been so frequently observed,
that epidemics owe a great deal of their rapid extension and violence
to the panic of fear which exists among the people. When yellow fever,
cholera, smallpox, diphtheria, and other malignant diseases obtain a
footing in a community, hundreds and thousands of people fall victims
to their own mental conditions, which invite the attack and insure its
fatality. When the disease was new and strange, as the yellow fever was
to the interior in its visitation in 1878, when the doctors were not
familiar with it, the nurses not trained to it, the people, having no
confidence in its management, lost hope, their fears became excessive,
and consequent mortality was frightful.

How does fear operate upon the body to produce sickness? By paralyzing
the nerve centres, especially those of the vasomotor nerves, thus
producing not only muscular relaxation, but capillary congestions of
all kinds. This condition of the system invites attack, and there is no
resilience, or power of resistance. The gates of the citadel have been
opened from within, and the enemy may enter at any point.

What determines the specific nature of the disease which attacks a
person thus prostrated by fear? Men are frequently prostrated by fear
in storms or fire or earthquakes or accidents, and no disease results.
It is because they have been not thinking and brooding over any special
morbid conditions. But in an epidemic, say of yellow fever, the
subjects connected with the disease are strongly pictured on the mind.
They are talked of, read about, discussed and written about, until the
mind is full of images of fever, delirium, black vomit, jaundice,
death, funerals, etc. When such is the case, no microbes or bacteria
are needed to produce an outburst of yellow fever. The whole mass of
horrors already stamped upon the mind is simply reflected and repeated
in the body.

"As a man thinketh, so is he," said Solomon. Thoughts become things,
apprehensions take form and substance, and lo! the disease. In the
height of his happiness and prosperity, Job permitted himself to brood
in silent fear over the possibility of losses and misfortunes, and he
had at last to exclaim, "The thing which I greatly feared has come upon

Sudden and great fears are not frequent. The fears of every day, the
constant apprehensions and anxieties of life, which are really fears
of impending evil, prey upon our vitality and lessen our power of
resisting, so that any passing disease may be photographed on our minds
and seen upon our bodies.

Fear is itself a contagious disease, and is sometimes reflected from
one to another mind with great rapidity. It needs no speech or sign
to propagate it, for by psychological laws we are just beginning to
comprehend, it passes from one to another, from the healthy to the
sick, from the doctor or the nurse to the patient, from the mother to
the child. Thus malignant influences may be cast around us by even our
best friends and would-be helpers, under whose baleful shadow, without
our even knowing of its existence, we and our children may sicken and

The summer of 1888 was signalized by a moderately severe epidemic of
yellow fever at Jacksonville, Florida, and a very extensive epidemic of
fear throughout the Southern states. The latter disease was much more
contagious than the former, and much less amenable to treatment. This
mental malady visited every little town, village, and railway station,
and kept the people in a chill of trepidation for many weeks. This
causeless and senseless terror originated many precipitate and unjust
measures of self-defense. Under its influence public and private rights
were disrespected, and the panic greatly intensified. In a few cases
the refugee was driven from the door, the hungry left unfed, the sick
unattended. There was exhibited on a small scale, here and there, that
same principle of terror which is manifested in a burning theatre, on
a sinking ship, or in a stampeded army, when brave men suddenly become
cowards, and wise men fools, and merciful men brutes.

Truly, something ought to be done for the moral treatment of yellow

I will relate an anecdote of Dr. Samuel Cartwright, of Natchez,
Mississippi, which furnishes an ideal type for the mental treatment of
yellow fever.

It was away back in the thirties, and yellow fever was prevailing
in New Orleans, and the places above it were in a state of watchful
fear. A young Northern teacher, trying to return home, started from
Woodville, Mississippi, and arrived at Natchez about midnight in a high
fever. Dr. Cartwright was immediately called in. Early in the morning
he summoned the officers of the hotel and all the regular boarders into
the parlor and made them a little speech. "This young lady," he said,
"has yellow fever. It is not contagious. None of you will take it from
her; and if you will follow my advice you will save this town from
a panic, and a panic is the hotbed of an epidemic. Say nothing about
this case. Ignore it absolutely. Let the ladies of the house help nurse
her, and take flowers and delicacies to her, and act altogether as if
it were some every-day affair, unattended by danger. It will save her
life, and perhaps in the long run many others."

It was agreed to by all but one person--a woman, who proceeded to
quarantine herself in the most remote room of the establishment. The
young teacher got well, and no one was sick in the house but the
self-quarantined woman, who took yellow fever from fear, but happily

By his great reputation and his strong magnetic power, Dr. Cartwright
dissipated the fears of those around him, and prevented an epidemic.
For this grand appreciation and successful application of a
principle--the power of mind and thought over physical conditions, a
power just dawning on the perception of the race--he deserves a nobler
monument than any we have accorded to heroes and statesmen.

The sanitarians of the present day would think on the contrary that
Dr. Cartwright was worthy of condemnation and imprisonment. Dr.
Cartwright, however, honestly believed that yellow fever was not a
contagious disease. At that time the non-contagionists were numerous,
learned, experienced, and respectable. The contagionists, however,
finally carried the day in the face of innumerable evidences of
non-contagion, which, strangely enough, have now about ceased to exist.
Whether they transformed a non-contagious into a contagious disease by
repeated and violent asseverations, which played upon and hypnotized
the professional and public mind, is a subtle point for psychological
investigation, not likely to be made by the present generation of

Can a non-contagious disease become contagious by mental action?
The power of fear to modify the currents of the blood and all the
secretions, to whiten the hair, to paralyze the nervous system, and
even to produce death is well known. Its power to impress organic
changes upon the child in the womb through the mother's mind is well
established. When yellow fever is reported about and believed to be
imminent and contagious, fear, combined with a vivid imagination of
the horrors and woes of the pest, can precipitate sickness which will
take on the form and color present to the thought, and yellow fever may
spread rapidly from person to person, all through the medium of the
mind. "Everything," said a great philosopher, "was at first a thought."

We see a non-contagious disease in the very process of transformation
into a contagious one in the case of pulmonary consumption. It was
observed occasionally that one of the married partners who had nursed
the other through the disease fell a victim after a while to the same
malady. Doctors and people began to suggest contagion. The cases of
one attack following the other were noticed more and more, and were
reported in the medical journals. It was spoken of, thought of, brooded
over. The confirmatory cases were all carefully noted; the failures to
infect were all ignored, as they always are by people who are looking
for contagion. The germ theory has given a great impetus to the idea of
contagion. Dr. Loomis actually classifies tuberculosis among miasmatic
contagious diseases. Fear will do the rest. In another generation the
occasional fact will be a common fact, and in still another, a fixed
fact; and the contagiousness of consumption will be enrolled among the
concrete errors of the profession. Such has probably been the genesis
of all contagious diseases in the remote past.

Fear being recognized as a powerful cause of disease, and a direct
and great obstacle to recovery, a wise sanitation will exert itself
to prevent or antidote its influences. To eradicate fear is to avert
disease, to shorten its duration, diminish its virulence, and promote
recovery. How shall we accomplish it? By educating the people up to a
higher standard of life. By teaching them a sounder hygiene, a wiser
philosophy, a more cheerful theology. By erasing a thousand errors,
delusions, and superstitions from their minds, and giving instead the
light, the beauty, and the loveliness of truth. There is a mental and
moral sanitation ahead of us, which is far more valuable and desirable
than all our quarantines, inventions, experimentations, and microscopic
search for physical causes.

I will draw the picture of a sick room in charge of physicians and
nurse, by whom this enlighted sanitation has been ignored or unheeded.
It is a chamber of fear, soon, in all probability, to be the chamber
of death. The room is darkened, for they are afraid of the light, that
emblem of God's wisdom which should shine into all rooms, except when
it is disagreeable to the patient. The ventilation is insufficient, for
draughts, you must know, are very dangerous. The friends have doleful
faces, moist eyes, sad voices, which reveal danger and doubt, and they
converse in subdued whispers, which alarm and annoy the patient. The
nurse and the doctor sometimes talk of their cases before the sick
man, tell how very ill they were, how they suffered, how they got well
miraculously, or how they died. The sympathetic visitor regales his
hearers, the patient included, with his or her knowledge of similar
cases, and their results, the great amount of sickness prevailing, and
the success or ill success of this or that doctor.

They all agree that it is dangerous to change the patient's linen,
dangerous to sponge the body, dangerous to give him cold water; milk
is feverish, meat is too strong. A shadow of fear seems to hang over
everybody. The pulse is counted, the temperature is taken. Nurse or
nearest friend wants to know aloud the report of the watch and the
thermometer. The doctor answers aloud, and all look grave. And so
it goes on day after day, thoughts and images of pain and sickness
and danger and death being impressed and reflected upon the mind
of the patient, and the great, sound, glorious spirit within finds
it impossible to break through this dense atmosphere of material
superstitions, fear, ignorance, and folly, and restore its own body to
health and happiness.

The true sanitarian will remember in his treatment the tremendous
power of words and ideas upon the sick. He will never indicate by his
language, his looks, or his conduct that he thinks the patient is very
ill. He will cleanse his own mind of morbid fears and apprehensions,
and reflect the stimulating light of hope on all around him. The
suppression of anxiety, and even sometimes of sympathy, is necessary.
His sickness should not be discussed before the patient, or any other
case of sickness alluded to. The doctor's opinion of the case should
never be asked, and never given within the patient's hearing. Erase,
as far as possible, all thoughts of disease, danger, or death. The
sick-room should not be darkened and made silent. It should be made
cheerful and natural, as if no sickness existed. It should have fresh
air, and cool water, and the fragrance of flowers, instead of the odor
of drugs. Hope, and not fear, should be the presiding genius of the

The mind-curers and the Christian Scientists say that almost all acute
diseases can be cured without medicine by the simple dissipation of
fear from the mind of the patient, of his friends, and of his doctor.
Whether this be true or not, it is very certain that when an epidemic
is threatened or prevailing, the people who are constantly talking
about and discussing the disease, the newspapers which daily report its
progress and fatality, and the doctors and nurses who ventilate their
experiences, who predict evil, speak ominously and enjoin all sorts of
precautions, are themselves fomenters and carriers of the disease,
infectious centers to the whole community.

Education can do much, but it is useless to expect the total
eradication of fear without the aid and guidance of the religious
principle. Fear is the cry of the wounded selfhood for something he
has suffered or lost, or is about to lose. "Perfect love casteth out
fear"--the perfect love of God and the neighbor. He who is in bondage
to the senses has everything to dread. He alone is free from all
apprehensions whose heart and mind are stayed upon the living God. He
truly "sits under his own vine and fig-tree, with none to make him



Mr. George Kennan's great work in Russian exploration and in the
investigation of Russian institutions has been due to certain qualities
of character which impress every one who knows him well. Of these
qualities, bravery and strength of will are not the least conspicuous.
In his conversations with me, he has often spoken of certain things in
connection with his own development and training, which are of much
interest. Once when I spoke to him of his bravery and coolness under
danger, he said:--

"Many things which have been significant and controlling in what I may
call my psychological life are wholly unknown to my friends, and yet
they might be made public, if you wish. For instance, as I look back
to my boyhood, the cause of the only unhappiness that boyhood had for
me was a secret but a deeply rooted suspicion that I was physically
a coward. This gave me intense suffering. I do not know precisely at
what time I first became conscious of it, but when I peered, one day,
through the window of a surgeon's office to see an amputation I had
proof of my fear. One of my playmates had caught his hand between two
cog-wheels in a mill, and his arm had been badly crushed. When he
was taken to the surgeon's office, I followed to see what was going
to be done with him. While I was watching the amputation, with my
face pressed to the glass of the window, the surgeon accidentally let
slip from his forceps the end of one of the severed arteries, and
a jet of blood spurted against the inside of the window-pane. The
result upon me was a sensation that I had never had before in all my
life,--a sensation of nausea, faintness, and overwhelming fear. I was
twenty-four hours in recovering from the shock, and from that time I
began to think about the nature of my emotions and the unsuspected
weakness of my character.

"I had a nervous, imaginative temperament, and not long after this
incident I began to be tortured by a vague suspicion that I was
lacking in what we now call 'nerve,' that I was afraid of things that
involved suffering or peril. I brooded over this suggestion of physical
cowardice until I became almost convinced of its reality, and at last
I came to be afraid of things that I had never before thought about.
In less than a year I had lost much of my self-respect, and was as
miserable as a boy could be. It all seems now very absurd and childish,
but at that time, with my boyish visions of travel and exploration, it
was a spiritual tragedy. 'Of what use is it to think of exploration and
wild life in wild countries,' I used to ask myself, 'if the first time
my courage or fortitude is put to the test I become faint and sick?'

"I began at last to experiment upon myself,--to do things that were
dangerous merely to see whether I dared do them; but the result was
only partially reassuring. I could not get into much danger in a sleepy
little village like Norwalk, Ohio, and although I found I could force
myself to walk around the six-inch stone coping of a bell-tower five
stories from the ground (a most perilous and foolhardy exploit), and
go and sit alone in a graveyard in the middle of dark, still nights,
I failed to recover my own respect. My self-reproach continued for
a year or two, during which I was as wretched as a boy can be who
admires courage above all things and has a high ideal of intrepid
manhood, but who secretly fears that he himself is hopelessly weak and
nerveless. There was hardly a day that I did not say to myself, 'You'll
never be able to do the things that you dream about; you haven't any
self-reliance or nerve. Even as a little child you were afraid of the
dark; you shrink now from fights and rows, and you turn faint at the
mere sight of blood. You're nothing but a coward.'

"At last, when I was seventeen or eighteen years of age, I went
to Cincinnati as a telegraph operator. I had become so morbid and
miserable by that time that I said one day, 'I'm going to put an end
to this state of affairs here and now. If I'm afraid of anything, I'll
conquer my fear of it or die. If I'm a coward I might as well be dead,
because I can never feel any self-respect or have any happiness in
life; and I'd rather get killed trying to do something that I'm afraid
to do than to live in this way.' I was at that time working at night,
and had to go home from the office between midnight and four o'clock
A. M. It was during the Civil War, and Cincinnati was a more lawless
city than it has ever been since. Street robberies and murders were
of daily occurrence, and all of the 'night men' in our office carried
weapons as a matter of course. I bought a revolver, and commenced a
course of experiments upon myself. When I finished my night work at
the office, instead of going directly home through well-lighted and
police-patrolled streets, I directed my steps to the slums and explored
the worst haunts of vice and crime in the city. If there was a dark,
narrow, cut-throat alley down by the river that I felt afraid to go
through at that hour of the night, I clenched my teeth, cocked my
revolver, and went through it,--sometimes twice in succession. If I
read in the morning papers that a man had been robbed or murdered on a
certain street, I went to that street the next night. I explored the
dark river-banks, hung around low drinking-dives and the resorts of
thieves and other criminals, and made it an invariable rule to do at
all hazards the thing that I thought I might be afraid to do. Of course
I had all sorts of experiences and adventures. One night I saw a man
attacked by highwaymen and knocked down with a slung-shot, just across
the street. I ran to his assistance, frightened away the robbers, and
picked him up from the gutter in a state of unconsciousness. Another
night, after two o'clock, I saw a man's throat cut, down by the
river,--and a ghastly sight it was; but, although somewhat shaken, I
did not become faint or sick. Every time I went through a street that
I believed to be dangerous, or had any startling experience, I felt an
accession of self-respect.

"In less than three months I had satisfied myself that while I did feel
fear, I was not so much daunted by any undertaking but I could do it if
I willed to do it, and then I began to feel better.

"Not long after this I went on my first expedition to Siberia, and
there, in almost daily struggles with difficulties, dangers, and
sufferings of all sorts, I finally lost the fear of being afraid which
had poisoned the happiness of my boyhood. It has never troubled me, I
think, since the fall of 1867, when I was blown out to sea one cold
and pitch-dark night in a dismasted and sinking sailboat, in a heavy,
offshore gale, without a swallow of water or a mouthful of food. I
faced then for about four hours what seemed to be certain death, but I
was steady, calm, and under perfect self-control."

    --_Kenyon West._


"Menticulture" was first issued in a sufficiently modest way. It
described a personal experience which has been of inestimable value to
the author. The revelation to him of the possibility of the absolute
elimination of the seeds of unhappiness has changed life from a
period of constant struggle to a period of security and repose, and
has insured delightful realities instead of uncertain possibilities.
One hundred and fifty copies of the book were privately printed, and
entitled "The A B C of True Living." It also carried within its pages
the title of "Emancipation."

The suggestion met with such hearty appreciation on the part of
personal friends in many various walks of life, that a public edition
was proposed, and the name of "Menticulture," a name that had to be
coined for the purpose, was chosen for it.

The aptness of the suggestion has been evidenced by the approval of the
brotherhood at large by appreciative notices in many of the leading
periodicals of the country, by the receipt of more than a thousand
personal letters by the author, many of them attesting to greatest
benefits growing out of the new point of view of life suggested by the
book, and by very large sales.

One gentleman--altruist--whose name is W. J. Van Patten, found the
suggestion contained in "Menticulture" so helpful to himself and
friends that he purchased a special edition of two thousand copies of
the book for distribution in his home city of Burlington, Vermont,
one to each household, with the idea of accentuating the suggestion
by widespread inter-discussion. The special Burlington edition has
an inset page bearing Mr. Van Patten's _raison d'être_ for the
distribution, which reads as follows:


Some time in the early part of the year 1896 a friend sent me a copy of
"Menticulture." I read it with interest, and became convinced that I
could apply its truths to my own life with profit. Experience confirmed
my faith in the power of its principles to overcome many of the most
annoying and damaging ills that are common to humanity.

I procured a number of copies from time to time and gave to friends
who I felt would appreciate it. The universal testimony to the good
which the little book did, and the new strength of purpose and will it
gave to some who were sore beset with the cares and worries of life,
increased my interest and my confidence in the truths set forth.

I formed the idea of making an experiment by giving the book a general
distribution in our city, to see if it would not promote the general
good and happiness of people.

I wrote to the author, Mr. Fletcher, and he entered into the plan very
cordially, and had this special edition prepared for me. The object
which we hope to gain is to turn the thoughts and purposes of those
whom we reach to the old truths taught by Christ, and a determination
to live above those evils which do so much to make our lives unhappy
for ourselves and annoying to those about us.

I would ask, therefore, that you would kindly give the book careful and
thoughtful reading, and, when you have opportunity, recommend it to
your friends.



Mr. Van Patten is a prominent manufacturer of Vermont, and was recently
Mayor of Burlington for two years. He is also prominent in the
Christian Endeavorer movement, having been the first president of the
United Society, and being at present one of its trustees, as well as
the president of the Congregational Club of western Vermont.

"Menticulture" has found favor among physicians, and also with
life-insurance companies, obviously because of the live-saving quality
of the suggestions contained in it.

Explanation of The A. B. C. Life Series


It would seem a considerable departure from the study of menticulture
as advised in the author's book, "Menticulture," to jump at once to an
investigation of the physiology and psychology of nutrition of the body
and then over to the department of infant and child care and education
as pursued in the _crêche_ and in the kindergarten; but as a matter of
fact, if study of the causation of human disabilities and misfortunes
is attempted at all, the quest leads naturally into all the departments
of human interest, and first into these primary departments.

The object of this statement is to link up the different publications
of the writer into a chain of consistent suggestions intended to
make life a more simple and agreeable problem than many of us too
indifferent or otherwise inefficient and bad fellow-citizens make of it.

It is not an altogether unselfish effort on the part of the author of
the A. B. C. Life Series to publish his findings. In the consideration
of his own mental and physical happiness it is impossible to leave out
environment, and all the units of humanity who inhabit the world are
part of his and of each other's environment.

It would be rank presumption for any person, even though gifted with
the means to circulate his suggestions as widely as possible, and
armed with the power to compel the reading of his publications, to
think that any suggestions of his could influence any considerable
number of his fellow-citizens of the world, or even of his own
immediate neighbourhood, to accept or follow his advice relative to the
management of their lives and of their communal and national affairs;
but while the general and complete good of humanity should be aimed
at in all publications, one's immediate neighbours and friends come
first, and the wave of influence spreads according to the effectiveness
of the ideas suggested in doing good; that is, in altering the point
of view and conduct of people so as to make them a better sympathetic

For instance, the children of your neighbours are likely to be the
playmates of your own children, and the children of degenerate parents
in the slum district of your city will possibly be the fellow-citizen
partners of your own family. Again, when it is known that right or
wrong nutrition of the body is the most important agent in forming
character, in establishing predisposition to temperance or intemperance
of living, including the desire for intoxicating stimulants, it is
revealed to one that right nutrition of the community as a whole is an
important factor in his own environment, as is self-care in the case of
his own nourishment.

The moment a student of every-day philosophy starts the study of
problems from the A. B. C. beginning of things, and to shape his study
according to an A. B. C. sequence, each cause of inharmony is at once
traced back to its first expression in himself and then to causes
influenced by his environments.

If we find that the largest influences for good or bad originate with
the right or wrong instruction of children during the home training or
kindergarten period of their development, and that a dollar expended
for education at that time is worth more for good than whole bancs of
courts and whole armies of police to correct the effect of bad training
and bad character later in life, it is quite logical to help promote
the spread of the kindergarten or the kindergarten idea to include
all of the children born into the world, and to furnish mothers and
kindergarten teachers with knowledge relative to the right nutrition
of their wards which they can themselves understand and can teach
effectively to children.

If we also find that the influence of the kindergarten upon the parents
of the infants is more potent than any other which can be brought to
bear upon them, we see clearly that the way to secure the widest
reform in the most thorough manner is to concentrate attention upon the
kindergarten phase of education, advocate its extension to include even
the last one of the children, beginning with the most needy first, and
extending the care outward from the centre of worst neglect to finally
reach the whole.

Experience in child saving so-called, and in child education on the
kindergarten principle, has taught the cheapest and the most profitable
way to insure an environment of good neighbours and profit-earning
citizens; and investigation into the problem of human alimentation
shows that a knowledge of the elements of an economic nutrition is the
first essential of a family or school training; and also that this is
most impressive when taught during the first ten years of life.

One cannot completely succeed in the study of menticulture from its A.
B. C. beginning and in A. B. C. sequence without appreciation of the
interrelation of the physical and the mental, the personal and the
social, in attaining a complete mastery of the subject.

The author of the A. B. C. Life Series has pursued his study of the
philosophy of life in experiences which have covered a great variety
of occupations in many different parts of the world and among peoples
of many different nations and races. His first book, "Menticulture,"
dealt with purging the mind and habits of sundry weaknesses and
deterrents which have possession of people in general in some degree.
He recognised the depressing effect of anger and worry and other
phases of _fearthought_. In the book "Happiness," which followed next
in order, _fearthought_ was shown to be the unprofitable element of
forethought. The influence of environment on each individual was
revealed as an important factor of happiness, or the reverse, by means
of an accidental encounter with a neglected waif in the busy streets of
Chicago during a period of intense national excitement incident to the
war with Spain, and this led to the publication of "That Last Waif;
or, Social Quarantine." During the time that this last book was being
written, attention to the importance of right nutrition was invited by
personal disabilities, and the experiments described in "Glutton or
Epicure; or, Economic Nutrition" were begun and have continued until

In the study of the latter, but most important factor in profitable
living, circumstances have greatly favoured the author, as related in
his latest book, "The A. B.-Z. of Our Own Nutrition."

The almost phenomenal circulation of "Menticulture" for a book of its
kind, and a somewhat smaller interest in the books on nutrition and
the appeal for better care of the waifs of society, showed that most
persons wished, like the author, to find a short cut to happiness by
means of indifference to environment, both internal and external, while
habitually sinning against the physiological dietetic requirements of
Nature. In smothering worry and guarding against anger the psychic
assistance of digestion was stimulated and some better results were
thereby obtained, but not the best attainable results.

Living is easy and life may be made constantly happy by beginning
right; and the right beginning is none other than the careful feeding
of the body. This done there is an enormous reserve of energy, a
naturally optimistic train of thought, a charitable attitude towards
everybody, and a loving appreciation of everything that God has made.
Morbidity of temperament will disappear from an organism that is
economically and rightly nourished, and death will cease to have any
terrors for such; and as _fear_ of death is the worst depressant known,
many of the _worries_ of existence take their everlasting flight from
the atmosphere of the rightly nourished.

The wide interest now prevalent in the subjects treated in The A. B. C.
Life Series is evidenced by the scientific, military, and lay activity,
in connection with the experiments at the Sheffield Scientific School
of Yale University and elsewhere, as related in the "A. B.-Z. of Our
Own Nutrition" and in "The New Glutton or Epicure" of the series.

The general application is more fully shown, however, by the
indorsement of the great Battle Creek Sanitarium, which practically
studies all phases of the subject, from health conservation and child
saving to general missionary work in social reform.


Transcriber's Note:

Missing punctuation has been inserted.

The oe ligature has been replaced by 'oe'.

Spelling, grammar, and variation in hyphenation and word usage
have been retained as in the original publication except as

    p. 198:
    on a milllion-to-one chance
    changed to
    on a million-to-one chance

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