Adolf Hitler on Personality and the Folkish State-Concept

FROM MEIN KAMPF, SUMMARY OF CHAPTER FOUR OF VOLUME TWO, pages 143-161 of the dual-translation. (See here for series introduction.)


THE NATIONAL SOCIALIST folkish State must adapt its own organization to meet it's principal task: to educate and preserve the bearers of the State … and train them for practical life.

It would be absurd to appraise a man's worth by his race, and make war against the Marxist principle that all men are equal, while being unwilling to draw the ultimate consequences … (that) the same applies to individual men within their national community. [O]ne head is not equal to another because, here too, the constituent elements of the same blood vary in a thousand subtle details, though they are equal in broad outline. [...]

This sifting according to capacity and ability cannot be effected mechanically, but rather is a task that can be accomplished only through the ongoing stuggle of daily life.

4.1 Building on an Aristocratic Principal

A worldview that rejects the democratic mass ideal and aims at giving this world to the best people … must also … ensure that positions of leadership and highest influence are given to the best minds. Hence, it's based not on the idea of the majority, but on that of personality.

Anyone who believes today that a folkish National Socialist State should distinguish itself from other states only mechanically, through the better construction of its economic life—thanks to a better balance between rich and poor, or by extending economic power to the broader masses, or by a fairer wage through elimination of large differences in pay—understands only the most superficial features of the matter, and hasn't the faintest idea of what we mean by our worldview. All these features just mentioned couldn't in the least guarantee us a lasting existence, and certainly would be no claim to greatness. A nation that could content itself with superficial reforms wouldn't have the slightest chance of success in the general struggle among nations.

4.2 Personality and Cultural Progress

It may be worthwhile to glance again at the real origins and causes of human cultural evolution.

The first step that visibly brought mankind away from the animal world was that of invention. Invention itself owes its origin to the ruses and stratagems that assist man in the life stuggle with other creatures, and that often provided him with the only means to success. … [I]n the case of man, his first skilled tactics in the struggle with other animals undoubtedly originated in individual and specially-capable subjects … [skills] which were later taken over by the whole of humanity as a matter of course.

Man complemented his first discovery by a second: He learned how to master other things and other living beings, and to make them serve him in his struggle for existence. Those material inventions—beginning with the use of stones as weapons, the domestication of animals, the production of fire by artificial means—show clearly that an individual was the creator. The nearer we come to our own time, and the more important and revolutionary the inventions, the more clearly we see this. […]

[A]ll such individuals, willfully or not, are benefactors of mankind, both great and small. Through their work, millions and indeed billions of human beings have received the means and resources to facilitate their life-struggle. The masses do not invent, nor does the majority organize or think—but always and in every case the individual man, the person.

A human community is well-organized only when it facilitates individual creative forces in a helpful way, and utilizes them for the community's benefit. ... The first and supreme duty of an organized folk community is to make the inventor useful to all. … Not only does the organization possess no right to prevent thinking individuals from rising above the masses but, on the contrary, it must use, enable and promote that ascension as far as possible.


Such minds are selected mainly, as already stated, through the harsh life-struggle. The idea of personality rules everywhere—in the realms of thought, in artistic creation, and even in economics. … It's only in political life that this very natural principle has been completely excluded. [I]n the administration of the national community … the principle of the value of the majority becomes decisive, and … allows all life to be gradually poisoned. … The destructive effects of the Jew's activity in other national bodies can be fundamentally ascribed to his persistent efforts at undermining the importance of personality among the host nations, and replacing it with the mass. The constructive principle of Aryan humanity is thus displaced by the destructive principle of the Jews. They become the 'ferment of decomposition' among nations and races and, in a broad sense, the dissolvers of human culture.

4.4 Marxism Negates the Value of Personality

In politics, this corresponds to the parliamentary form of government. We can observe its disastrous effects everywhere, from the smallest municipalities up to the highest leadership of the Reich … and in the trade union movement which doesn't serve the real interests of the employees but rather the destructive aims of international world Jewry.

Even if Marxism were a thousand-times capable of taking over the present economy and guiding its operation … it could never create something like that which it overtakes today. … Not only has it been unable anywhere to create a culture of its own, but it hasn't even been able to sustain existing ones. Rather, after a short time, it has had to make compromises and return to the principle of personality; even in its own organization, it can't dispense with it. […]

If the National Socialist movement failed to understand the fundamental importance of this essential principle [the value of race and thus personality] … then it would really do nothing more than compete with Marxism. For that reason, it wouldn't have the right to call itself a worldview.

4.4 The Best Form of State

The best constitution and form of State is that which naturally allows the best minds to reach positions of dominant importance and influence in the community.

… [A]ble men cannot be designated from above, but must struggle forward themselves … life itself is the school whereby the real lessons … are taught.

The principle that made the former Prussian army an admirable instrument of the German nation must become the basis of our state conception: authority of every leader directed downward and responsibility directed upward.

Even then we won't be able to do without those corporate bodies that today we call parliaments. But then they will really have to give counsel; responsibility, however, can and must be carried by one man, and therefore he alone will be vested with authority and the right to command. Parliaments per se are necessary because they alone furnish the opportunity for leaders to gradually arise who will be subsequently entrusted with positions of special responsibility. […]

This principle of combining absolute authority with absolute responsibility will gradually cause a selected group of leaders to emerge, such as is unthinkable in our present era of irresponsible parliamentarianism.

4.5 National Socialism and the Coming State

Regarding the possibility of putting these ideas into practice, I would like to recall the fact that the parliamentarian principle of democratic majority rule has not always dominated. On the contrary, it's found only during short periods of history, and always during the decline of nations and states.

One mustn't believe, however, that such a transformation could be effected by purely theoretical measures … Such a revolution can occur only by means of a movement that is itself organized under the spirit of these principles and thus bears the future State within itself.

Thus the National Socialist movement should familiarize itself completely with those principles today and actually put them into practice within its own organization, so that not only will it be in a position to serve as a guide for the future State, but it will have its own organization that can be placed at the disposal of the State itself.


Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf