If one seeks power of any kind, it is necessary to have a goal and a path toward that goal. While tactics used along the way are in flux, the strategy will largely remain the same. So careful attention must be paid to devising a strategy. The right strategy can make all the difference in the world when it comes to when—or even if—the ultimate goal is arrived at.

Many great men have written on the process by which strategy should be arrived at. The art of the general is as applicable to our own struggles as it is on the battlefield. This is why so many who have never even been in the same room as a weapon have studied The Art of War.

The ultimate aim of virtually anyone striving in such a way is power, whether we mean power over the self or power over others. Once power is acquired, the question is how one chooses to exercise it. This is a class of wisdom all its own and one that is best studied well in advance of actually acquiring power, lest one be unprepared for its exercise when power does finally arrive.

The following are some crucial musings on proper strategy and the nature of power. Use them as a starting point for your own quest for power — whatever that means to you.

Quotes About Power and the Effects Power Can Have

Unknown quote on power & strategy


“The measure of a man is what he does with power.”

– Unknown, often misattributed to Plato

Napoleon quote on power & strategy


“To do all that one is able to do, is to be a man; to do all that one would like to do, is to be a god.”

– Napoléon Bonaparte


Robert Greene quote on power & strategy


“Power rarely ends up in the hands of those who start a revolution, or even of those who further it; power sticks to those who bring it to a conclusion.”

– Robert Greene, 48 Laws of Power


Ram Dass quote on power & strategy

“The most exquisite paradox…as soon as you give it all up, you can have it all. As long as you want power, you can’t have it. The minute you don’t want power, you’ll have more than you ever dreamed possible.”

– Ram Dass


Robert A. Heinlein quote on power & strategy

“Consider the black widow spider. It’s a timid little beastie, useful and, for my taste, the prettiest of the arachnids, with its shiny, patent-leather finish and its red hourglass trademark. But the poor thing has the fatal misfortune of possessing enormously too much power for its size. So everybody kills it on sight.”

– Robert A. HeinleinStranger in a Strange Land


F. Dostoevsky quote on power & strategy


“Power is given only to him who dares to stoop and take it … one must have the courage to dare.”

– Fyodor DostoevskyCrime and Punishment


John Steinbeck quote on power & strategy


“Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts… perhaps the fear of a loss of power.”

– John Steinbeck, The Short Reign of Pippin IV


Robert Ingersoll quote on power & strategy


“If you want to find out what a man is to the bottom, give him power. Any man can stand adversity – only a great man can stand prosperity.

– Robert Ingersoll, speaking about Abraham Lincoln


George Orwell quote on power & strategy

“Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power.”

– George Orwell, 1984


Henry Ward Beecher quote on power & strategy

“If any man is rich and powerful he comes under the law of God by which the higher branches must take the burnings of the sun, and shade those that are lower; by which the tall trees must protect the weak plants beneath them.”

– Henry Ward Beecher


Ayn Rand quote on power & strategy


“Power-lust is a weed that grows only in the vacant lots of an abandoned mind.”

– Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged


Chinese proverb quote on power & strategy


“When the tree falls, the monkeys scatter.”

– Chinese proverb