Elbert Hubbard’s “The Law of Obedience”
The first item in the commonsense creed is Obedience. Do your work with a whole heart! The man who mixes revolt and obedience is doomed to disappoint himself and everybody with whom he has dealings. To flavor work with protest is to fail absolutely. When you revolt – climb, get out, hike, defy – tell everybody and everything to go to limbo! That disposes of the case. You thus separate yourself entirely from those you have served – no one misunderstands you – you have declared yourself. But to pretend to obey, and yet carry in your heart the spirit to revolt, is to do half-hearted and slipshod work. If revolt and obedience are equal, your engine will stop on the center and you benefit nobody, not even yourself. The Spirit of Obedience is the controlling impulse of the receptive mind and the hospitable heart. There are boats that mind the helm and boats that don’t. Those that don’t, get holes knocked in them sooner or later. To keep off the rocks obey the rudder. Obedience is not to lavishly obey this man or that, but it is that cheerful mental condition which responds to the necessity of the case, and does the thing. Obedience to the institution – loyalty! The man who has not learned to obey has trouble ahead of him every step of the way – the world has it in for him because he has it in for the world. The man who does not know how to receive orders is not fit to issue them. But he who knows how to execute orders is preparing the way to give them, and better still – to have them obeyed.
— Elbert Hubbard