Vintage Kansas
Arthur E. Stilwell, Railroad Visionary, Author, and Prophet

Live And Grow Young
Arthur Edward Stilwell


Chapter Twenty-One

There is a great difference between discontented people and those who are discomposed.  Discontented people are in the class with the "rolling stones."  They are beacons that light the path of progress.  They are not satisfied with the world as they find it and want to make it better.  Healthful discontent is a virtue. 

The discomposed people are those whose lives are disordered.  They are easily irritated and vexed.  They usually do not know what they want, and whatever they get, they usually want something else.  They are nervous, neurasthenic subjects.  Discomposed people are merely luggage.  They do not know how to be happy and they seldom allow anyone else to be.  They never will accomplish great things, for, being in a constant state of irritation and peevishness, their vision is clouded.  Discomposure breeds disease and fills hospitals and asylums.  The discomposed people shorten the average of human life, as they usually die young.  Everything vexes them.  They have an idea that life is teasing them and they resent it.  The discomposed people have no aim.  By forgetting self and undertaking some worthy task, they might forget their discomposure.

Healthful discontent is God in man bursting forth into fuller expression of infinite possibilities.  The discontented person thinks there is a better way.  He is not contented with methods used and wishes to find better ones.  Had Moses been contented, he would never have spent forty years leading the children of Israel through the wilderness.  We never would have had the ten commandments and the Old Testament would have lost a great part of its power.  Had Christ not been discontented with established religion, with the greed, sin, cruelty and lust of the world, the sublime Sermon on the Mount would never have been given to man.  There would have been no crucifixion and no resurrection and man would never have known that the grave could be robbed of its victory.  While Christ was discontented, (not satisfied with life as it was lived), he was never discomposed. 

Columbus was discontented with the size of the world and added a new hemisphere to the globe.  Had Franklin been contented to sit down and watch the storm, electricity would never have been induced to slide to earth on his kite string.

The discontent of Robert Fulton enabled us to sail the seas by steamer.  The discontent of the steam in a tea kettle gave to the discontented brain of James Watt the idea from which the steam engine was evolved.

Morse was not contented with the slow mail and gave us the perfected telegraph which was born in the brain of the discontented Joseph Henry.

Bell and Grey's discontent blessed us with the telephone.

George Westinghouse was not contented with the old hand brake and his discontent gave to man the air brake, that reduced the danger of travel and greatly lowered the cost of transportation.

Thomas Edison, that volcano of discontent, has given the world such a number of blessings, it is difficult to enumerate them, and thought three-score-years-and-ten (the supposed jumping off place for man), he is still hard at work.

The Roll of the Discontented, but unconquered, to whom the world is deeply indebted, would fill volumes.  Among them are Stevenson, Ericson, Thompson, Marconi, Wright, Curtis, Corliss, Roentgen, Morton, --the noble list extends to history's very first page.

Wholesome discontent may be likened to wireless messages flashed into ethereal space calling for help.  They are man's conscious or unconscious S O S calls, and as the operators pick up wireless vibrations and interpret them, so great minds pick up the demands of discontent, the needs of the world, and undertake to solve the problems.  They become the messenger boy and deliver to the world whatever its discontent demands.

Man is and always has been  discontented.  he resents the fallacy that three-score-years-and-ten is the allotted span of life ordained by Nature.  Most men fail to appreciate the fact that it is mesmerism  that holds him to this belief.  Owing to his discontent, man has searched he world over for the Fountain of Youth --compounded elixir after elixir --thought he had found it in S-rays, violet rays, radium, etc., but prolonged life will not  come from without.  It is the product of the within.  Man must force his mind to work in harmony with his body and as that rebuilds and rebuilds, always replacing the old cells with new ones, so he must replace old life thought with new ones, and if he visualizes youth as persistently as his body reproduces youth cells for old ones, he will have found the Fountain of Youth.  But, it will not be elixirs or waters, but visions that will constantly renew his vital being and keep him young.

The healthy discontented people who read this book will be more discontented than ever over the accepted world-wide belief of three-score-years-and-ten, and if they become sufficiently discontented, they will destroy its mesmeric power.

The discomposed people -- the ones vexed and irritated --will, no doubt, become more discomposed.  They will doubt the truth of these statements that life can be prolonged.  Every new truth will vex them.  The discontented, however, working in harmony with Nature, will determine to rival the longevity of Moses and Thomas Parr.  In another half-century this goal will be attained.  When at that time there shall be a host of people, 140, 150 and 160 years young, the Jubilee Edition of this book will call attention to the age attained by Noah, Cainan, Jared, Enoch and Methuselah and beg those who are discontented with their attainment of 160 years, to continue this process of life renewal and emulate the vital history of Methuselah.

Vintage Kansas




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Arthur Edward Stilwell, Visionary

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