Christian Science
by Mark Twain
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Finally, they believe that she philosophized Christian Science, explained it, systematized it, and wrote it all out with her own hand in the book Science and Health.

I am not able to believe that. Let us draw the line there. The known and undisputed products of her pen are a formidable witness against her. They do seem to me to prove, quite clearly and conclusively, that writing, upon even simple subjects, is a difficult labor for her: that she has never been able to write anything above third-rate English; that she is weak in the matter of grammar; that she has but a rude and dull sense of the values of words; that she so lacks in the matter of literary precision that she can seldom put a thought into words that express it lucidly to the reader and leave no doubts in his mind as to whether he has rightly understood or not; that she cannot even draught a Preface that a person can fully comprehend, nor one which can by any art be translated into a fully understandable form; that she can seldom inject into a Preface even single sentences whose meaning is uncompromisingly clear—yet Prefaces are her specialty, if she has one.

Mrs. Eddy's known and undisputed writings are very limited in bulk; they exhibit no depth, no analytical quality, no thought above school composition size, and but juvenile ability in handling thoughts of even that modest magnitude. She has a fine commercial ability, and could govern a vast railway system in great style; she could draught a set of rules that Satan himself would say could not be improved on—for devilish effectiveness—by his staff; but we know, by our excursions among the Mother-Church's By-laws, that their English would discredit the deputy baggage-smasher. I am quite sure that Mrs. Eddy cannot write well upon any subject, even a commercial one.

In the very first revision of Science and Health (1883), Mrs. Eddy wrote a Preface which is an unimpeachable witness that the rest of the book was written by somebody else. I have put it in the Appendix along with a page or two taken from the body of the book, and will ask the reader to compare the labored and lumbering and confused gropings of this Preface with the easy and flowing and direct English of the other exhibit, and see if he can believe that the one hand and brain produced both.

And let him take the Preface apart, sentence by sentence, and searchingly examine each sentence word by word, and see if he can find half a dozen sentences whose meanings he is so sure of that he can rephrase them—in words of his own—and reproduce what he takes to be those meanings. Money can be lost on this game. I know, for I am the one that lost it.

Now let the reader turn to the excerpt which I have made from the chapter on "Prayer" (last year's edition of Science and Health), and compare that wise and sane and elevated and lucid and compact piece of work with the aforesaid Preface, and with Mrs. Eddy's poetry concerning the gymnastic trees, and Minerva's not yet effete sandals, and the wreaths imported from Erudition's bower for the decoration of Plymouth Rock, and the Plague-spot and Bacilli, and my other exhibits (turn back to my Chapters I. and II.) from the Autobiography, and finally with the late Communication concerning me, and see if he thinks anybody's affirmation, or anybody's sworn testimony, or any other testimony of any imaginable kind would ever be likely to convince him that Mrs. Eddy wrote that chapter on Prayer.

I do not wish to impose my opinion on any one who will not permit it, but such as it is I offer it here for what it is worth. I cannot believe, and I do not believe, that Mrs. Eddy originated any of the thoughts and reasonings out of which the book Science and Health is constructed; and I cannot believe, and do not believe that she ever wrote any part of that book.

I think that if anything in the world stands proven, and well and solidly proven, by unimpeachable testimony—the treacherous testimony of her own pen in her known and undisputed literary productions—it is that Mrs. Eddy is not capable of thinking upon high planes, nor of reasoning clearly nor writing intelligently upon low ones.

Inasmuch as—in my belief—the very first editions of the book Science and Health were far above the reach of Mrs. Eddy's mental and literary abilities, I think she has from the very beginning been claiming as her own another person's book, and wearing as her own property laurels rightfully belonging to that person—the real author of Science and Health. And I think the reason—and the only reason—that he has not protested is because his work was not exposed to print until after he was safely dead.

That with an eye to business, and by grace of her business talent, she has restored to the world neglected and abandoned features of the Christian religion which her thousands of followers find gracious and blessed and contenting, I recognize and confess; but I am convinced that every single detail of the work except just that one—the delivery of the Product to the world—was conceived and performed by another.



There seems a Christian necessity of learning God's power and purpose to heal both mind and body. This thought grew out of our early seeking Him in all our ways, and a hopeless as singular invalidism that drugs increased instead of diminished, and hygiene benefited only for a season. By degrees we have drifted into more spiritual latitudes of thought, and experimented as we advanced until demonstrating fully the power of mind over the body. About the year 1862, having heard of a mesmerist in Portland who was treating the sick by manipulation, we visited him; he helped us for a time, then we relapsed somewhat. After his decease, and a severe casualty deemed fatal by skilful physicians, we discovered that the Principle of all healing and the law that governs it is God, a divine Principle, and a spiritual not material law, and regained health.

It was not an individual or mortal mind acting upon another so-called mind that healed us. It was the glorious truths of Christian Science that we discovered as we neared that verge of so-called material life named death; yea, it was the great Shekinah, the spirit of Life, Truth, and Love illuminating our understanding of the action and might of Omnipotence! The old gentleman to whom we have referred had some very advanced views on healing, but he was not avowedly religious neither scholarly. We interchanged thoughts on the subject of healing the sick. I restored some patients of his that he failed to heal, and left in his possession some manuscripts of mine containing corrections of his desultory pennings, which I am informed at his decease passed into the hands of a patient of his, now residing in Scotland. He died in 1865 and left no published works. The only manuscript that we ever held of his, longer than to correct it, was one of perhaps a dozen pages, most of which we had composed. He manipulated the sick; hence his ostensible method of healing was physical instead of mental.

We helped him in the esteem of the public by our writings, but never knew of his stating orally or in writing that he treated his patients mentally; never heard him give any directions to that effect; and have it from one of his patients, who now asserts that he was the founder of mental healing, that he never revealed to anyone his method. We refer to these facts simply to refute the calumnies and false claims of our enemies, that we are preferring dishonest claims to the discovery and founding at this period of Metaphysical Healing or Christian Science.

The Science and laws of a purely mental healing and their method of application through spiritual power alone, else a mental argument against disease, are our own discovery at this date. True, the Principle is divine and eternal, but the application of it to heal the sick had been lost sight of, and required to be again spiritually discerned and its science discovered, that man might retain it through the understanding. Since our discovery in 1866 of the divine science of Christian Healing, we have labored with tongue and pen to found this system. In this endeavor every obstacle has been thrown in our path that the envy and revenge of a few disaffected students could devise. The superstition and ignorance of even this period have not failed to contribute their mite towards misjudging us, while its Christian advancement and scientific research have helped sustain our feeble efforts.

Since our first Edition of Science and Health, published in 1875, two of the aforesaid students have plagiarized and pirated our works. In the issues of E. J. A., almost exclusively ours, were thirteen paragraphs, without credit, taken verbatim from our books.

Not one of our printed works was ever copied or abstracted from the published or from the unpublished writings of anyone. Throughout our publications of Metaphysical Healing or Christian Science, when writing or dictating them, we have given ourselves to contemplation wholly apart from the observation of the material senses: to look upon a copy would have distracted our thoughts from the subject before us. We were seldom able to copy our own compositions, and have employed an amanuensis for the last six years. Every work that we have had published has been extemporaneously written; and out of fifty lectures and sermons that we have delivered the last year, forty-four have been extemporaneous. We have distributed many of our unpublished manuscripts; loaned to one of our youngest students, R. K————y, between three and four hundred pages, of which we were sole author—giving him liberty to copy but not to publish them.

Leaning on the sustaining Infinite with loving trust, the trials of to-day grow brief, and to-morrow is big with blessings.

The wakeful shepherd, tending his flocks, beholds from the mountain's top the first faint morning beam ere cometh the risen day. So from Soul's loftier summits shines the pale star to prophet-shepherd, and it traverses night, over to where the young child lies, in cradled obscurity, that shall waken a world. Over the night of error dawn the morning beams and guiding star of Truth, and "the wise men" are led by it to Science, which repeats the eternal harmony that it reproduced, in proof of immortality. The time for thinkers has come; and the time for revolutions, ecclesiastical and civil, must come. Truth, independent of doctrines or time-honored systems, stands at the threshold of history. Contentment with the past, or the cold conventionality of custom, may no longer shut the door on science; though empires fall, "He whose right it is shall reign." Ignorance of God should no longer be the stepping-stone to faith; understanding Him, "whom to know aright is Life eternal," is the only guaranty of obedience.

This volume may not open a new thought, and make it at once familiar. It has the sturdy task of a pioneer, to hack away at the tall oaks and cut the rough granite, leaving future ages to declare what it has done. We made our first discovery of the adaptation of metaphysics to the treatment of disease in the winter of 1866; since then we have tested the Principle on ourselves and others, and never found it to fail to prove the statements herein made of it. We must learn the science of Life, to reach the perfection of man. To understand God as the Principle of all being, and to live in accordance with this Principle, is the Science of Life. But to reproduce this harmony of being, the error of personal sense must yield to science, even as the science of music corrects tones caught from the ear, and gives the sweet concord of sound. There are many theories of physic and theology, and many calls in each of their directions for the right way; but we propose to settle the question of "What is Truth?" on the ground of proof, and let that method of healing the sick and establishing Christianity be adopted that is found to give the most health and to make the best Christians; science will then have a fair field, in which case we are assured of its triumph over all opinions and beliefs. Sickness and sin have ever had their doctors; but the question is, Have they become less because of them? The longevity of our antediluvians would say, No! and the criminal records of today utter their voices little in favor of such a conclusion. Not that we would deny to Caesar the things that are his, but that we ask for the things that belong to Truth; and safely affirm, from the demonstrations we have been able to make, that the science of man understood would have eradicated sin, sickness, and death, in a less period than six thousand years. We find great difficulties in starting this work right. Some shockingly false claims are already made to a metaphysical practice; mesmerism, its very antipodes, is one of them. Hitherto we have never, in a single instance of our discovery, found the slightest resemblance between mesmerism and metaphysics. No especial idiosyncrasy is requisite to acquire a knowledge of metaphysical healing; spiritual sense is more important to its discernment than the intellect; and those who would learn this science without a high moral standard of thought and action, will fail to understand it until they go up higher. Owing to our explanations constantly vibrating between the same points, an irksome repetition of words must occur; also the use of capital letters, genders, and technicalities peculiar to the science. Variety of language, or beauty of diction, must give place to close analysis and unembellished thought. "Hoping all things, enduring all things," to do good to our enemies, to bless them that curse us, and to bear to the sorrowing and the sick consolation and healing, we commit these pages to posterity.



The Gospel narratives bear brief testimony even to the life of our great Master. His spiritual noumenon and phenomenon, silenced portraiture. Writers, less wise than the Apostles, essayed in the Apocryphal New Testament, a legendary and traditional history of the early life of Jesus. But Saint Paul summarized the character of Jesus as the model of Christianity, in these words: "Consider Him who endured such contradictions of sinners against Himself. Who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."

It may be that the mortal life battle still wages, and must continue till its involved errors are vanquished by victory-bringing Science; but this triumph will come! God is over all. He alone is our origin, aim, and Being. The real man is not of the dust, nor is he ever created through the flesh; for his father and mother are the one Spirit, and his brethren are all the children of one parent, the eternal Good.

Any kind of literary composition was excessively difficult for Mrs. Eddy. She found it grinding hard work to dig out anything to say. She realized, at the above stage in her life, that with all her trouble she had not been able to scratch together even material enough for a child's Autobiography, and also that what she had secured was in the main not valuable, not important, considering the age and the fame of the person she was writing about; and so it occurred to her to attempt, in that paragraph, to excuse the meagreness and poor quality of the feast she was spreading, by letting on that she could do ever so much better if she wanted to, but was under constraint of Divine etiquette. To feed with more than a few indifferent crumbs a plebeian appetite for personal details about Personages in her class was not the correct thing, and she blandly points out that there is Precedent for this reserve. When Mrs. Eddy tries to be artful—in literature—it is generally after the manner of the ostrich; and with the ostrich's luck. Please try to find the connection between the two paragraphs.—M. T.


The following is the spiritual signification of the Lord's Prayer:

Principle, eternal and harmonious, Nameless and adorable Intelligence, Thou art ever present and supreme. And when this supremacy of Spirit shall appear, the dream of matter will disappear. Give us the understanding of Truth and Love. And loving we shall learn God, and Truth will destroy all error. And lead us unto the Life that is Soul, and deliver us from the errors of sense, sin, sickness, and death, For God is Life, Truth, and Love for ever. —Science and Health, edition of 1881.

It seems to me that this one is distinctly superior to the one that was inspired for last year's edition. It is strange, but to my mind plain, that inspiring is an art which does not improve with practice.—M. T.


"For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

"Your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask Him." —CHRIST JESUS.

The prayer that reclaims the sinner and heals the sick, is an absolute faith that all things are possible to God—a spiritual understanding of Him—an unselfed love. Regardless of what another may say or think on this subject, I speak from experience. This prayer, combined with self-sacrifice and toil, is the means whereby God has enabled me to do what I have done for the religion and health of mankind.

Thoughts unspoken are not unknown to the divine Mind. Desire is prayer; and no less can occur from trusting God with our desires, that they may be moulded and exalted before they take form in audible word, and in deeds.

What are the motives for prayer? Do we pray to make ourselves better, or to benefit those that hear us; to enlighten the Infinite, or to be heard of men? Are we benefited by praying? Yes, the desire which goes forth hungering after righteousness is blessed of our Father, and it does not return unto us void.

God is not moved by the breath of praise to do more than He has already done; nor can the Infinite do less than bestow all good, since He is unchanging Wisdom and Love. We can do more for ourselves by humble fervent petitions; but the All-loving does not grant them simply on the ground of lip-service, for He already knows all.

Prayer cannot change the Science of Being, but it does bring us into harmony with it. Goodness reaches the demonstration of Truth. A request that another may work for us never does our work. The habit of pleading with the divine Mind, as one pleads with a human being, perpetuates the belief in God as humanly circumscribed—an error which impedes spiritual growth.

God is Love. Can we ask Him to be more? God is Intelligence. Can we inform the infinite Mind, or tell Him anything He does not already comprehend? Do we hope to change perfection? Shall we plead for more at the open fount, which always pours forth more than we receive? The unspoken prayer does bring us nearer the Source of all existence and blessedness.

Asking God to be God is a "vain repetition." God is "the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever"; and He who is immutably right will do right, without being reminded of His province. The wisdom of man is not sufficient to warrant him in advising God.

Who would stand before a blackboard, and pray the principle of mathematics to work out the problem? The rule is already established, and it is our task to work out the solution. Shall we ask the divine Principle of all goodness to do His own work? His work is done; and we have only to avail ourselves of God's rule, in order to receive the blessing thereof.

The divine Being must be reflected by man—else man is not the image and likeness of the patient, tender, and true, the one "altogether lovely"; but to understand God is the work of eternity, and demands absolute concentration of thought and energy.

How empty are our conceptions of Deity! We admit theoretically that God is good, omnipotent, omnipresent, infinite, and then we try to give information to this infinite Mind; and plead for unmerited pardon, and a liberal outpouring of benefactions. Are we really grateful for the good already received? Then we shall avail ourselves of the blessings we have, and thus be fitted to receive more. Gratitude is much more than a verbal expression of thanks Action expresses more gratitude than speech.

If we are ungrateful for Life, Truth, and Love, and yet return thanks to God for all blessings, we are insincere; and incur the sharp censure our Master pronounces on hypocrites. In such a case the only acceptable prayer is to put the finger on the lips and remember our blessings. While the heart is far from divine Truth and Love, we cannot conceal the ingratitude of barren lives, for God knoweth all things.

What we most need is the prayer of fervent desire for growth in grace, expressed in patience, meekness, love, and good deeds. To keep the commandments of our Master and follow his example, is our proper debt to Him, and the only worthy evidence of our gratitude for all He has done. Outward worship is not of itself sufficient to express loyal and heartfelt gratitude, since He has said: "If ye love Me, keep My Commandments."

The habitual struggle to be always good, is unceasing prayer. Its motives are made manifest in the blessings they bring—which, if not acknowledged in audible words, attest our worthiness to be made partakers of Love.

Simply asking that we may love God will never make us love Him; but the longing to be better and holier—expressed in daily watchfulness, and in striving to assimilate more of the divine character—this will mould and fashion us anew, until we awake in His likeness. We reach the Science of Christianity through demonstration of the divine nature; but in this wicked world goodness will "be evil spoken of," and patience must work experience.

Audible prayer can never do the works of spiritual understanding, which regenerates; but silent prayer, watchfulness, and devout obedience, enable us to follow Jesus' example. Long prayers, ecclesiasticism, and creeds, have clipped the divine pinions of Love, and clad religion in human robes. They materialize worship, hinder the Spirit, and keep man from demonstrating his power over error.

Sorrow for wrong-doing is but one step towards reform, and the very easiest step. The next and great step required by Wisdom is the test of our sincerity—namely, reformation. To this end we are placed under the stress of circumstances. Temptation bids us repeat the offence, and woe comes in return for what is done. So it will ever be, till we learn that there is no discount in the law of justice, and that we must pay "the uttermost farthing." The measure ye mete "shall be measured to you again," and it will be full "and running over."

Saints and sinners get their full award, but not always in this world. The followers of Christ drank His cup. Ingratitude and persecution filled it to the brim; but God pours the riches of His love into the understanding and affections, giving us strength according to our day. Sinners flourish "like a green bay-tree"; but, looking farther, the Psalmist could see their end—namely, the destruction of sin through suffering.

Prayer is sometimes used, as a confessional to cancel sin. This error impedes true religion. Sin is forgiven, only as it is destroyed by Christ-Truth and Life If prayer nourishes the belief that sin is cancelled, and that man is made better by merely praying, it is an evil. He grows worse who continues in sin because he thinks himself forgiven.

An apostle says that the Son of God (Christ) came to "destroy the works of the devil." We should follow our divine Exemplar, and seek the destruction of all evil works, error and disease included. We cannot escape the penalty due for sin. The Scriptures say, that if we deny Christ, "He also will deny us."

The divine Love corrects and governs man. Men may pardon, but this divine Principle alone reforms the sinner. God is not separate from the wisdom He bestows. The talents He gives we must improve. Calling on Him to forgive our work, badly done or left undone, implies the vain supposition that we have nothing to do but to ask pardon, and that afterwards we shall be free to repeat the offence.

To cause suffering, as the result of sin, is the means of destroying sin. Every supposed pleasure in sin will furnish more than its equivalent of pain, until belief in material life and sin is destroyed. To reach heaven, the harmony of Being, we must understand the divine Principle of Being.

"God is Love." More than this we cannot ask; higher we cannot look; farther we cannot go. To suppose that God forgives or punishes sin, according as His mercy is sought or unsought, is to misunderstand Love and make prayer the safety-valve for wrong-doing.

Jesus uncovered and rebuked sin before He cast it out. Of a sick woman He said that Satan had bound her; and to Peter He said, "Thou art an offense unto me." He came teaching and showing men how to destroy sin, sickness, and death. He said of the fruitless tree, "It is hewn down."

It is believed by many that a certain magistrate, who lived in the time of Jesus, left this record: "His rebuke is fearful." The strong language of our Master confirms this description.

The only civil sentence which He had for error was, "Get thee behind Me, Satan." Still stronger evidence that Jesus' reproof was pointed and pungent is in His own words—showing the necessity for such forcible utterance, when He cast out devils and healed the sick and sinful. The relinquishment of error deprives material sense of its false claims.

Audible prayer is impressive; it gives momentary solemnity and elevation to thought; but does it produce any lasting benefit? Looking deeply into these things, we find that "a zeal . . . not according to knowledge," gives occasion for reaction unfavorable to spiritual growth, sober resolve, and wholesome perception of God's requirements. The motives for verbal prayer may embrace too much love of applause to induce or encourage Christian sentiment.

Physical sensation, not Soul, produces material ecstasy, and emotions. If spiritual sense always guided men at such times, there would grow out of those ecstatic moments a higher experience and a better life, with more devout self-abnegation, and purity. A self-satisfied ventilation of fervent sentiments never makes a Christian. God is not influenced by man. The "divine ear" is not an auditorial nerve. It is the all-hearing and all-knowing Mind, to whom each want of man is always known, and by whom it will be supplied.

The danger from audible prayer is, that it may lead us into temptation. By it we may become involuntary hypocrites, uttering desires which are not real, and consoling ourselves in the midst of sin, with the recollection that we have prayed over it—or mean to ask forgiveness at some later day. Hypocrisy is fatal to religion.

A wordy prayer may afford a quiet sense of self-justification, though it makes the sinner a hypocrite. We never need despair of an honest heart, but there is little hope for those who only come spasmodically face to face with their wickedness, and then seek to hide it. Their prayers are indexes which do not correspond with their character. They hold secret fellowship with sin; and such externals are spoken of by Jesus as "like unto whited sepulchres . . . full of all uncleanness."

If a man, though apparently fervent and prayerful, is impure, and therefore insincere, what must be the comment upon him? If he had reached the loftiness of his prayer, there would be no occasion for such comment. If we feel the aspiration, humility, gratitude, and love which our words express—this God accepts; and it is wise not to try to deceive ourselves or others, for "there is nothing covered that shall not be revealed." Professions and audible prayers are like charity in one respect—they "cover a multitude of sins." Praying for humility, with whatever fervency of expression, does not always mean a desire for it. If we turn away from the poor, we are not ready to receive the reward of Him who blesses the poor. We confess to having a very wicked heart, and ask that it may be laid bare before us; but do we not already know more of this heart than we are willing to have our neighbor see?

We ought to examine ourselves, and learn what is the affection and purpose of the heart; for this alone can show us what we honestly are. If a friend informs us of a fault, do we listen to the rebuke patiently, and credit what is said? Do we not rather give thanks that we are "not as other men?" During many years the author has been most grateful for merited rebuke. The sting lies in unmerited censure—in the falsehood which does no one any good.

The test of all prayer lies in the answer to these questions: Do we love our neighbor better because of this asking? Do we pursue the old selfishness, satisfied with having prayed for something better, though we give no evidence of the sincerity of our requests by living consistently with our prayer? If selfishness has given place to kindness, we shall regard our neighbor unselfishly, and bless them that curse us; but we shall never meet this great duty by simply asking that it may be done. There is a cross to be taken up, before we can enjoy the fruition of our hope and faith.

Dost thou "love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind?" This command includes much—even the surrender of all merely material sensation, affection, and worship. This is the El Dorado of Christianity. It involves the Science of Life, and recognizes only the divine control of Spirit, wherein Soul is our master, and material sense and human will have no place.

Are you willing to leave all for Christ, for Truth, and so be counted among sinners? No! Do you really desire to attain this point? No! Then why make long prayers about it, and ask to be Christians, since you care not to tread in the footsteps of our dear Master? If unwilling to follow His example, wherefore pray with the lips that you may be partakers of His nature? Consistent prayer is the desire to do right. Prayer means that we desire to, and will, walk in the light so far as we receive it, even though with bleeding footsteps, and waiting patiently on the Lord, will leave our real desires to be rewarded by Him.

The world must grow to the spiritual understanding of prayer. If good enough to profit by Jesus' cup of earthly sorrows, God will sustain us under these sorrows. Until we are thus divinely qualified, and willing to drink His cup, millions of vain repetitions will never pour into prayer the unction of Spirit, in demonstration of power, and "with signs following." Christian Science reveals a necessity for overcoming the world, the flesh and evil, and thus destroying all error.

Seeking is not sufficient. It is striving which enables us to enter. Spiritual attainments open the door to a higher understanding of the divine Life.

One of the forms of worship in Thibet is to carry a praying-machine through the streets, and stop at the doors to earn a penny by grinding out a prayer; whereas civilization pays for clerical prayers, in lofty edifices. Is the difference very great, after all?

Experience teaches us that we do not always receive the blessings we ask for in prayer.

There is some misapprehension of the source and means of all goodness and blessedness, or we should certainly receive what we ask for. The Scriptures say: "Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts." What we desire and ask for it is not always best for us to receive. In this case infinite Love will not grant the request. Do you ask Wisdom to be merciful and not punish sin? Then "ye ask amiss." Without punishment, sin would multiply. Jesus' prayer, "forgive us our debts," specified also the terms of forgiveness. When forgiving the adulterous woman He said, "Go, and sin no more."

A magistrate sometimes remits the penalty, but this may be no moral benefit to the criminal; and at best, it only saves him from one form of punishment. The moral law, which has the right to acquit or condemn, always demands restitution, before mortals can "go up higher." Broken law brings penalty, in order to compel this progress.

Mere legal pardon (and there is no other, for divine Principle never pardons our sins or mistakes till they are corrected) leaves the offender free to repeat the offense; if, indeed, he has not already suffered sufficiently from vice to make him turn from it with loathing. Truth bestows no pardon upon error, but wipes it out in the most effectual manner. Jesus suffered for our sins, not to annul the divine sentence against an individual's sin, but to show that sin must bring inevitable suffering.

Petitions only bring to mortals the results of their own faith. We know that a desire for holiness is requisite in order to gain it; but if we desire holiness above all else, we shall sacrifice everything for it. We must be willing to do this, that we may walk securely in the only practical road to holiness. Prayer alone cannot change the unalterable Truth, or give us an understanding of it; but prayer coupled with a fervent habitual desire to know and do the will of God will bring us into all Truth. Such a desire has little need of audible expression. It is best expressed in thought and life.


Reverend Heber Newton on Christian Science:

To begin, then, at the beginning, Christian Science accepts the work of healing sickness as an integral part of the discipleship of Jesus Christ. In Christ it finds, what the Church has always recognized, theoretically, though it has practically ignored the fact—the Great Physician. That Christ healed the sick, we none of us question. It stands plainly upon the record. This ministry of healing was too large a part of His work to be left out from any picture of that life. Such service was not an incident of His career—it was an essential element of that career. It was an integral factor in His mission. The Evangelists leave us no possibility of confusion on this point. Co-equal with his work of instruction and inspiration was His work of healing.

The records make it equally clear that the Master laid His charge upon His disciples to do as He had done. "When He had called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease." In sending them forth, "He commanded them, saying, . . . As ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons."

That the twelve disciples undertook to do the Master's work of healing, and that they, in their measure, succeeded, seems beyond question. They found in themselves the same power that the Master found in Himself, and they used it as He had used His power. The record of The Acts of the Apostles, if at all trustworthy history, shows that they, too, healed the sick.

Beyond the circle of the original twelve, it is equally clear that the early disciples believed themselves charged with the same mission, and that they sought to fulfil it. The records of the early Church make it indisputable that powers of healing were recognized as among the gifts of the Spirit. St. Paul's letters render it certain that these gifts were not a privilege of the original twelve, merely, but that they were the heritage into which all the disciples entered.

Beyond the era of the primitive Church, through several generations, the early Christians felt themselves called to the same ministry of healing, and enabled with the same secret of power. Through wellnigh three centuries, the gifts of healing appear to have been, more or less, recognized and exercised in the Church. Through those generations, however, there was a gradual disuse of this power, following upon a failing recognition of its possession. That which was originally the rule became the exception. By degrees, the sense of authority and power to heal passed out from the consciousness of the Church. It ceased to be a sign of the indwelling Spirit. For fifteen centuries, the recognition of this authority and power has been altogether exceptional. Here and there, through the history of these centuries, there have been those who have entered into this belief of their own privilege and duty, and have used the gift which they recognized. The Church has never been left without a line of witnesses to this aspect of the discipleship of Christ. But she has come to accept it as the normal order of things that what was once the rule in the Christian Church should be now only the exception. Orthodoxy has framed a theory of the words of Jesus to account for this strange departure of His Church from them. It teaches us to believe that His example was not meant to be followed, in this respect, by all His disciples. The power of healing which was in Him was a purely exceptional power. It was used as an evidence of His divine mission. It was a miraculous gift. The gift of working miracles was not bestowed upon His Church at large. His original disciples, the twelve apostles, received this gift, as a necessity of the critical epoch of Christianity —the founding of the Church. Traces of the power lingered on, in weakening activity, until they gradually ceased, and the normal condition of the Church was entered upon, in which miracles are no longer possible.

We accept this, unconsciously, as the true state of things in Christianity. But it is a conception which will not bear a moment's examination. There is not the slightest suggestion upon record that Christ set any limit to this charge which He gave His disciples. On the contrary, there are not lacking hints that He looked for the possession and exercise of this power wherever His spirit breathed in men.

Even if the concluding paragraph of St. Mark's Gospel were a later appendix, it may none the less have been a faithful echo of words of the Master, as it certainly is a trustworthy record of the belief of the early Christians as to the thought of Jesus concerning His followers. In that interesting passage, Jesus, after His death, appeared to the eleven, and formally commissioned them, again, to take up His work in the world; bidding them, "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." "And these signs," He tells them, "shall follow them that believe"—not the apostles only, but "them that believe," without limit of time; "in My name they shall cast out devils . . . they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover." The concluding discourse to the disciples, recorded in the Gospel according to St. John, affirms the same expectation on the part of Jesus; emphasizing it in His solemn way: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do."


Few will deny that an intelligence apart from man formed and governs the spiritual universe and man; and this intelligence is the eternal Mind, and neither matter nor man created this intelligence and divine Principle; nor can this Principle produce aught unlike itself. All that we term sin, sickness, and death is comprised in the belief of matter. The realm of the real is spiritual; the opposite of Spirit is matter; and the opposite of the real is unreal or material. Matter is an error of statement, for there is no matter. This error of premises leads to error of conclusion in every statement of matter as a basis. Nothing we can say or believe regarding matter is true, except that matter is unreal, simply a belief that has its beginning and ending.

The conservative firm called matter and mind God never formed. The unerring and eternal Mind destroys this imaginary copartnership, formed only to be dissolved in a manner and at a period unknown. This copartnership is obsolete. Placed under the microscope of metaphysics matter disappears. Only by understanding there are not two, matter and mind, is a logical and correct conclusion obtained by either one. Science gathers not grapes of thorns or figs of thistles. Intelligence never produced non-intelligence, such as matter: the immortal never produced mortality, good never resulted in evil. The science of Mind shows conclusively that matter is a myth. Metaphysics are above physics, and drag not matter, or what is termed that, into one of its premises or conclusions. Metaphysics resolves things into thoughts, and exchanges the objects of sense for the ideas of Soul. These ideas are perfectly tangible and real to consciousness, and they have this advantage—they are eternal. Mind and its thoughts comprise the whole of God, the universe, and of man. Reason and revelation coincide with this statement, and support its proof every hour, for nothing is harmonious or eternal that is not spiritual: the realization of this will bring out objects from a higher source of thought; hence more beautiful and immortal.

The fact of spiritualization produces results in striking contrast to the farce of materialization: the one produces the results of chastity and purity, the other the downward tendencies and earthward gravitation of sensualism and impurity.

The exalting and healing effects of metaphysics show their fountain. Nothing in pathology has exceeded the application of metaphysics. Through mind alone we have prevented disease and preserved health. In cases of chronic and acute diseases, in their severest forms, we have changed the secretions, renewed structure, and restored health; have elongated shortened limbs, relaxed rigid muscles, made cicatrized joints supple; restored carious bones to healthy conditions, renewed that which is termed the lost substance of the lungs; and restored healthy organizations where disease was organic instead of functional.


I feel almost sure that Mrs. Eddy's inspiration—works are getting out of repair. I think so because they made some errors in a statement which she uttered through the press on the 17th of January. Not large ones, perhaps, still it is a friend's duty to straighten such things out and get them right when he can. Therefore I will put my other duties aside for a moment and undertake this helpful service. She said as follows:

"In view of the circulation of certain criticisms from the pen of Mark Twain, I submit the following statement:

"It is a fact, well understood, that I begged the students who first gave me the endearing appellative 'mother' not to name me thus. But, without my consent, that word spread like wildfire. I still must think the name is not applicable to me. I stand in relation to this century as a Christian discoverer, founder, and leader. I regard self-deification as blasphemous; I may be more loved, but I am less lauded, pampered, provided for, and cheered than others before me—and wherefore? Because Christian Science is not yet popular, and I refuse adulation.

"My visit to the Mother-Church after it was built and dedicated pleased me, and the situation was satisfactory. The dear members wanted to greet me with escort and the ringing of bells, but I declined, and went alone in my carriage to the church, entered it, and knelt in thanks upon the steps of its altar. There the foresplendor of the beginnings of truth fell mysteriously upon my spirit. I believe in one Christ, teach one Christ, know of but one Christ. I believe in but one incarnation, one Mother Mary, and know I am not that one, and never claimed to be. It suffices me to learn the Science of the Scriptures relative to this subject.

"Christian Scientists have no quarrel with Protestants, Catholics, or any other sect. They need to be understood as following the divine Principle God, Love and not imagined to be unscientific worshippers of a human being.

"In the aforesaid article, of which I have seen only extracts, Mark Twain's wit was not wasted In certain directions. Christian Science eschews divine rights in human beings. If the individual governed human consciousness, my statement of Christian Science would be disproved, but to understand the spiritual idea is essential to demonstrate Science and its pure monotheism—one God, one Christ, no idolatry, no human propaganda. Jesus taught and proved that what feeds a few feeds all. His life-work subordinated the material to the spiritual, and He left this legacy of truth to mankind. His metaphysics is not the sport of philosophy, religion, or Science; rather it is the pith and finale of them all.

"I have not the inspiration or aspiration to be a first or second Virgin-Mother—her duplicate, antecedent, or subsequent. What I am remains to be proved by the good I do. We need much humility, wisdom, and love to perform the functions of foreshadowing and foretasting heaven within us. This glory is molten in the furnace of affliction."

She still thinks the name of Our Mother not applicable to her; and she is also able to remember that it distressed her when it was conferred upon her, and that she begged to have it suppressed. Her memory is at fault here. If she will take her By-laws, and refer to Section 1 of Article XXII., written with her own hand—she will find that she has reserved that title to herself, and is so pleased with it, and so—may we say jealous?—about it, that she threatens with excommunication any sister Scientist who shall call herself by it. This is that Section 1:

"The Title of Mother. In the year 1895 loyal Christian Scientists had given to the author of their text-book, the Founder of Christian Science, the individual, endearing term of Mother. Therefore, if a student of Christian Science shall apply this title, either to herself or to others, except as the term for kinship according to the flesh, it shall be regarded by the Church as an indication of disrespect for their Pastor Emeritus, and unfitness to be a member of the Mother-Church."

Mrs. Eddy is herself the Mother-Church—its powers and authorities are in her possession solely—and she can abolish that title whenever it may please her to do so. She has only to command her people, wherever they may be in the earth, to use it no more, and it will never be uttered again. She is aware of this.

It may be that she "refuses adulation" when she is not awake, but when she is awake she encourages it and propagates it in that museum called "Our Mother's Room," in her Church in Boston. She could abolish that institution with a word, if she wanted to. She is aware of that. I will say a further word about the museum presently.

Further down the column, her memory is unfaithful again:

"I believe in . . . but one Mother Mary, and know I am not that one, and never claimed to be."

At a session of the National Christian Science Association, held in the city of New York on the 27th of May, 1890, the secretary was "instructed to send to our Mother greetings and words of affection from her assembled children."

Her telegraphic response was read to the Association at next day's meeting:

"All hail! He hath filled the hungry with good things and the sick hath He not sent empty away.—MOTHER MARY."

Which Mother Mary is this one? Are there two? If so, she is both of them; for, when she signed this telegram in this satisfied and unprotesting way, the Mother-title which she was going to so strenuously object to, and put from her with humility, and seize with both hands, and reserve as her sole property, and protect her monopoly of it with a stern By-law, while recognizing with diffidence that it was "not applicable" to her (then and to-day)—that Mother—title was not yet born, and would not be offered to her until five years later. The date of the above "Mother Mary" is 1890; the "individual, endearing title of Mother" was given her "in 1895"—according to her own testimony. See her By-law quoted above.

In his opening Address to that Convention of 1890, the President recognized this Mary—our Mary-and abolished all previous ones. He said:

"There is but one Moses, one Jesus; and there is but one Mary."

The confusions being now dispersed, we have this clarified result:

Were had been a Moses at one time, and only one; there had been a Jesus at one time, and only one; there is a Mary and "only one." She is not a Has Been, she is an Is—the "Author of Science and Health; and we cannot ignore her."

1. In 1890, there was but one Mother Mary. The President said so. 2. Mrs. Eddy was that one. She said so, in signing the telegram. 3. Mrs. Eddy was not that one for she says so, in her Associated Press utterance of January 17th. 4. And has "never claimed to be that one"—unless the signature to the telegram is a claim.

Thus it stands proven and established that she is that Mary and isn't, and thought she was and knows she wasn't. That much is clear.

She is also "The Mother," by the election of 1895, and did not want the title, and thinks it is not applicable to her, end will excommunicate any one that tries to take it away from her. So that is clear.

I think that the only really troublesome confusion connected with these particular matters has arisen from the name Mary. Much vexation, much misunderstanding, could have been avoided if Mrs. Eddy had used some of her other names in place of that one. "Mother Mary" was certain to stir up discussion. It would have been much better if she had signed the telegram "Mother Baker"; then there would have been no Biblical competition, and, of course, that is a thing to avoid. But it is not too late, yet.

I wish to break in here with a parenthesis, and then take up this examination of Mrs. Eddy's Claim of January 17th again.

The history of her "Mother Mary" telegram—as told to me by one who ought to be a very good authority—is curious and interesting. The telegram ostensibly quotes verse 53 from the "Magnificat," but really makes some pretty formidable changes in it. This is St. Luke's version:

"He hath filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He hath sent empty away."

This is "Mother Mary's" telegraphed version:

"He hath filled the hungry with good things, and the sick hath He not sent empty away."

To judge by the Official Report, the bursting of this bombshell in that massed convention of trained Christians created no astonishment, since it caused no remark, and the business of the convention went tranquilly on, thereafter, as if nothing had happened.

Did those people detect those changes? We cannot know. I think they must have noticed them, the wording of St. Luke's verse being as familiar to all Christians as is the wording of the Beatitudes; and I think that the reason the new version provoked no surprise and no comment was, that the assemblage took it for a "Key"—a spiritualized explanation of verse 53, newly sent down from heaven through Mrs. Eddy. For all Scientists study their Bibles diligently, and they know their Magnificat. I believe that their confidence in the authenticity of Mrs. Eddy's inspirations is so limitless and so firmly established that no change, however violent, which she might make in a Bible text could disturb their composure or provoke from them a protest.

Her improved rendition of verse 53 went into the convention's report and appeared in a New York paper the next day. The (at that time) Scientist whom I mentioned a minute ago, and who had not been present at the convention, saw it and marvelled; marvelled and was indignant—indignant with the printer or the telegrapher, for making so careless and so dreadful an error. And greatly distressed, too; for, of course, the newspaper people would fall foul of it, and be sarcastic, and make fun of it, and have a blithe time over it, and be properly thankful for the chance. It shows how innocent he was; it shows that he did not know the limitations of newspaper men in the matter of Biblical knowledge. The new verse 53 raised no insurrection in the press; in fact, it was not even remarked upon; I could have told him the boys would not know there was anything the matter with it. I have been a newspaper man myself, and in those days I had my limitations like the others.

The Scientist hastened to Concord and told Mrs. Eddy what a disastrous mistake had been made, but he found to his bewilderment that she was tranquil about it, and was not proposing to correct it. He was not able to get her to promise to make a correction. He asked her secretary if he had heard aright when the telegram was dictated to him; the secretary said he had, and took the filed copy of it and verified its authenticity by comparing it with the stenographic notes.

Mrs. Eddy did make the correction, two months later, in her official organ. It attracted no attention among the Scientists; and, naturally, none elsewhere, for that periodical's circulation was practically confined to disciples of the cult.

That is the tale as it was told to me by an ex-Scientist. Verse 53 —renovated and spiritualized—had a narrow escape from a tremendous celebrity. The newspaper men would have made it as famous as the assassination of Caesar, but for their limitations.

To return to the Claim. I find myself greatly embarrassed by Mrs. Eddy's remark: "I regard self-deification as blasphemous." If she is right about that, I have written a half-ream of manuscript this past week which I must not print, either in the book which I am writing, or elsewhere: for it goes into that very matter with extensive elaboration, citing, in detail, words and acts of Mrs. Eddy's which seem to me to prove that she is a faithful and untiring worshipper of herself, and has carried self-deification to a length which has not been before ventured in ages. If ever. There is not room enough in this chapter for that Survey, but I can epitomize a portion of it here.

With her own untaught and untrained mind, and without outside help, she has erected upon a firm and lasting foundation the most minutely perfect, and wonderful, and smoothly and exactly working, and best safe-guarded system of government that has yet been devised in the world, as I believe, and as I am sure I could prove if I had room for my documentary evidences here.

It is a despotism (on this democratic soil); a sovereignty more absolute than the Roman Papacy, more absolute than the Russian Czarship; it has not a single power, not a shred of authority, legislative or executive, which is not lodged solely in the sovereign; all its dreams, its functions, its energies, have a single object, a single reason for existing, and only the one—to build to the sky the glory of the sovereign, and keep it bright to the end of time.

Mrs. Eddy is the sovereign; she devised that great place for herself, she occupies that throne.

In 1895, she wrote a little primer, a little body of autocratic laws, called the Manual of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and put those laws in force, in permanence. Her government is all there; all in that deceptively innocent-looking little book, that cunning little devilish book, that slumbering little brown volcano, with hell in its bowels. In that book she has planned out her system, and classified and defined its purposes and powers.


A Supreme Church. At Boston. Branch Churches. All over the world One Pastor for the whole of them: to wit, her book, Science and Health. Term of the book's office—forever.

In every C.S. pulpit, two "Readers," a man and a woman. No talkers, no preachers, in any Church-readers only. Readers of the Bible and her books—no others. No commentators allowed to write or print.

A Church Service. She has framed it—for all the C.S. Churches —selected its readings, its prayers, and the hymns to be used, and has appointed the order of procedure. No changes permitted.

A Creed. She wrote it. All C.S. Churches must subscribe to it. No other permitted.

A Treasury. At Boston. She carries the key.

A C.S. Book—Publishing House. For books approved by her. No others permitted.

Journals and Magazines. These are organs of hers, and are controlled by her.

A College. For teaching C.S.


Supreme Church. Pastor Emeritus—Mrs. Eddy. Board of Directors. Board of Education. Board of Finance. College Faculty. Various Committees. Treasurer. Clerk. First Members (of the Supreme Church). Members of the Supreme Church.

It looks fair, it looks real, but it is all a fiction.

Even the little "Pastor Emeritus" is a fiction. Instead of being merely an honorary and ornamental official, Mrs. Eddy is the only official in the entire body that has the slightest power. In her Manual, she has provided a prodigality of ways and forms whereby she can rid herself of any functionary in the government whenever she wants to. The officials are all shadows, save herself; she is the only reality. She allows no one to hold office more than a year—no one gets a chance to become over-popular or over-useful, and dangerous. "Excommunication" is the favorite penalty-it is threatened at every turn. It is evidently the pet dread and terror of the Church's membership.

The member who thinks, without getting his thought from Mrs. Eddy before uttering it, is banished permanently. One or two kinds of sinners can plead their way back into the fold, but this one, never. To think—in the Supreme Church—is the New Unpardonable Sin.

To nearly every severe and fierce rule, Mrs. Eddy adds this rivet: "This By-law shall not be changed without the consent of the Pastor Emeritus."

Mrs. Eddy is the entire Supreme Church, in her own person, in the matter of powers and authorities.

Although she has provided so many ways of getting rid of unsatisfactory members and officials, she was still afraid she might have left a life-preserver lying around somewhere, therefore she devised a rule to cover that defect. By applying it, she can excommunicate (and this is perpetual again) every functionary connected with the Supreme Church, and every one of the twenty-five thousand members of that Church, at an hour's notice—and do it all by herself without anybody's help.

By authority of this astonishing By-law, she has only to say a person connected with that Church is secretly practicing hypnotism or mesmerism; whereupon, immediate excommunication, without a hearing, is his portion! She does not have to order a trial and produce evidence—her accusation is all that is necessary.

Where is the Pope? and where the Czar? As the ballad says:

"Ask of the winds that far away With fragments strewed the sea!"

The Branch Church's pulpit is occupied by two "Readers." Without them the Branch Church is as dead as if its throat had been cut. To have control, then, of the Readers, is to have control of the Branch Churches. Mrs. Eddy has that control—a control wholly without limit, a control shared with no one.

1. No Reader can be appointed to any Church in the Christian Science world without her express approval.

2. She can summarily expel from his or her place any Reader, at home or abroad, by a mere letter of dismissal, over her signature, and without furnishing any reason for it, to either the congregation or the Reader.

Thus she has as absolute control over all Branch Churches as she has over the Supreme Church. This power exceeds the Pope's.

In simple truth, she is the only absolute sovereign in all Christendom. The authority of the other sovereigns has limits, hers has none, none whatever. And her yoke does not fret, does not offend. Many of the subjects of the other monarchs feel their yoke, and are restive under it; their loyalty is insincere. It is not so with this one's human property; their loyalty is genuine, earnest, sincere, enthusiastic. The sentiment which they feel for her is one which goes out in sheer perfection to no other occupant of a throne; for it is love, pure from doubt, envy, exaction, fault-seeking, a love whose sun has no spot—that form of love, strong, great, uplifting, limitless, whose vast proportions are compassable by no word but one, the prodigious word, Worship. And it is not as a human being that her subjects worship her, but as a supernatural one, a divine one, one who has comradeship with God, and speaks by His voice.

Mrs. Eddy has herself created all these personal grandeurs and autocracies—with others which I have not (in this article) mentioned. They place her upon an Alpine solitude and supremacy of power and spectacular show not hitherto attained by any other self-seeking enslaver disguised in the Christian name, and they persuade me that, although she may regard "self-deification as blasphemous," she is as fond of it as I am of pie.

She knows about "Our Mother's Room" in the Supreme Church in Boston —above referred to—for she has been in it. In a recently published North American Review article, I quoted a lady as saying Mrs. Eddy's portrait could be seen there in a shrine, lit by always-burning lights, and that C.S. disciples came and worshiped it. That remark hurt the feelings of more than one Scientist. They said it was not true, and asked me to correct it. I comply with pleasure. Whether the portrait was there four years ago or not, it is not there now, for I have inquired. The only object in the shrine now, and lit by electrics—and worshiped—is an oil-portrait of the horse-hair chair Mrs. Eddy used to sit in when she was writing Science and Health! It seems to me that adulation has struck bottom, here.

Mrs. Eddy knows about that. She has been there, she has seen it, she has seen the worshippers. She could abolish that sarcasm with a word. She withholds the word. Once more I seem to recognize in her exactly the same appetite for self-deification that I have for pie. We seem to be curiously alike; for the love of self-deification is really only the spiritual form of the material appetite for pie, and nothing could be more strikingly Christian-Scientifically "harmonious."

I note this phrase:

"Christian Science eschews divine rights in human beings."

"Rights" is vague; I do not know what it means there. Mrs. Eddy is not well acquainted with the English language, and she is seldom able to say in it what she is trying to say. She has no ear for the exact word, and does not often get it. "Rights." Does it mean "honors?" "attributes?"

"Eschews." This is another umbrella where there should be a torch; it does not illumine the sentence, it only deepens the shadows. Does she mean "denies?" "refuses?" "forbids?" or something in that line? Does she mean:

"Christian Science denies divine honors to human beings?" Or:

"Christian Science refuses to recognize divine attributes in human beings?" Or:

"Christian Science forbids the worship of human beings?"

The bulk of the succeeding sentence is to me a tunnel, but, when I emerge at this end of it, I seem to come into daylight. Then I seem to understand both sentences—with this result:

"Christian Science recognizes but one God, forbids the worship of human beings, and refuses to recognize the possession of divine attributes by any member of the race."

I am subject to correction, but I think that that is about what Mrs. Eddy was intending to convey. Has her English—which is always difficult to me—beguiled me into misunderstanding the following remark, which she makes (calling herself "we," after an old regal fashion of hers) in her preface to her Miscellaneous Writings?

"While we entertain decided views as to the best method for elevating the race physically, morally, and spiritually, and shall express these views as duty demands, we shall claim no especial gift from our divine organ, no supernatural power."

Was she meaning to say:

"Although I am of divine origin and gifted with supernatural power, I shall not draw upon these resources in determining the best method of elevating the race?"

If she had left out the word "our," she might then seem to say:

"I claim no especial or unusual degree of divine origin—"

Which is awkward—most awkward; for one either has a divine origin or hasn't; shares in it, degrees of it, are surely impossible. The idea of crossed breeds in cattle is a thing we can entertain, for we are used to it, and it is possible; but the idea of a divine mongrel is unthinkable.

Well, then, what does she mean? I am sure I do not know, for certain. It is the word "our" that makes all the trouble. With the "our" in, she is plainly saying "my divine origin." The word "from" seems to be intended to mean "on account of." It has to mean that or nothing, if "our" is allowed to stay. The clause then says:

"I shall claim no especial gift on account of my divine origin."

And I think that the full sentence was intended to mean what I have already suggested:

"Although I am of divine origin, and gifted with supernatural power, I shall not draw upon these resources in determining the best method of elevating the race."

When Mrs. Eddy copyrighted that Preface seven years ago, she had long been used to regarding herself as a divine personage. I quote from Mr. F. W. Peabody's book:

"In the Christian Science Journal for April, 1889, when it was her property, and published by her, it was claimed for her, and with her sanction, that she was equal with Jesus, and elaborate effort was made to establish the claim."

"Mrs. Eddy has distinctly authorized the claim in her behalf, that she herself was the chosen successor to and equal of Jesus."

The following remark in that April number, quoted by Mr. Peabody, indicates that her claim had been previously made, and had excited "horror" among some "good people":

"Now, a word about the horror many good people have of our making the Author of Science and Health 'equal with Jesus.'"

Surely, if it had excited horror in Mrs. Eddy also, she would have published a disclaimer. She owned the paper; she could say what she pleased in its columns. Instead of rebuking her editor, she lets him rebuke those "good people" for objecting to the claim.

These things seem to throw light upon those words, "our [my] divine origin."

It may be that "Christian Science eschews divine rights in human beings," and forbids worship of any but "one God, one Christ"; but, if that is the case, it looks as if Mrs. Eddy is a very unsound Christian Scientist, and needs disciplining. I believe she has a serious malady —"self-deification"; and that it will be well to have one of the experts demonstrate over it.

Meantime, let her go on living—for my sake. Closely examined, painstakingly studied, she is easily the most interesting person on the planet, and, in several ways, as easily the most extraordinary woman that was ever born upon it.

P.S.—Since I wrote the foregoing, Mr. McCrackan's article appeared (in the March number of the North American Review). Before his article appeared—that is to say, during December, January, and February—I had written a new book, a character-portrait of Mrs. Eddy, drawn from her own acts and words, and it was then—together with the three brief articles previously published in the North American Review—ready to be delivered to the printer for issue in book form. In that book, by accident and good luck, I have answered the objections made by Mr. McCrackan to my views, and therefore do not need to add an answer here. Also, in it I have corrected certain misstatements of mine which he has noticed, and several others which he has not referred to. There are one or two important matters of opinion upon which he and I are not in disagreement; but there are others upon which we must continue to disagree, I suppose; indeed, I know we must; for instance, he believes Mrs. Eddy wrote Science and Health, whereas I am quite sure I can convince a person unhampered by predilections that she did not.

As concerns one considerable matter I hope to convert him. He believes Mrs. Eddy's word; in his article he cites her as a witness, and takes her testimony at par; but if he will make an excursion through my book when it comes out, and will dispassionately examine her testimonies as there accumulated, I think he will in candor concede that she is by a large percentage the most erratic and contradictory and untrustworthy witness that has occupied the stand since the days of the lamented Ananias.


Broadly speaking, the hostiles reject and repudiate all the pretensions of Christian Science Christianity. They affirm that it has added nothing new to Christianity; that it can do nothing that Christianity could not do and was not doing before Christian Science was born.

In that case is there no field for the new Christianity, no opportunity for usefulness, precious usefulness, great and distinguished usefulness? I think there is. I am far from being confident that it can fill it, but I will indicate that unoccupied field—without charge—and if it can conquer it, it will deserve the praise and gratitude of the Christian world, and will get it, I am sure.

The present Christianity makes an excellent private Christian, but its endeavors to make an excellent public one go for nothing, substantially.

This is an honest nation—in private life. The American Christian is a straight and clean and honest man, and in his private commerce with his fellows can be trusted to stand faithfully by the principles of honor and honesty imposed upon him by his religion. But the moment he comes forward to exercise a public trust he can be confidently counted upon to betray that trust in nine cases out of ten, if "party loyalty" shall require it.

If there are two tickets in the field in his city, one composed of honest men and the other of notorious blatherskites and criminals, he will not hesitate to lay his private Christian honor aside and vote for the blatherskites if his "party honor" shall exact it. His Christianity is of no use to him and has no influence upon him when he is acting in a public capacity. He has sound and sturdy private morals, but he has no public ones. In the last great municipal election in New York, almost a complete one-half of the votes representing 3,500,000 Christians were cast for a ticket that had hardly a man on it whose earned and proper place was outside of a jail. But that vote was present at church next Sunday the same as ever, and as unconscious of its perfidy as if nothing had happened.

Our Congresses consist of Christians. In their private life they are true to every obligation of honor; yet in every session they violate them all, and do it without shame; because honor to party is above honor to themselves. It is an accepted law of public life that in it a man may soil his honor in the interest of party expediency—must do it when party expediency requires it. In private life those men would bitterly resent—and justly—any insinuation that it would not be safe to leave unwatched money within their reach; yet you could not wound their feelings by reminding them that every time they vote ten dollars to the pension appropriation nine of it is stolen money and they the marauders. They have filched the money to take care of the party; they believe it was right to do it; they do not see how their private honor is affected; therefore their consciences are clear and at rest. By vote they do wrongful things every day, in the party interest, which they could not be persuaded to do in private life. In the interest of party expediency they give solemn pledges, they make solemn compacts; in the interest of party expediency they repudiate them without a blush. They would not dream of committing these strange crimes in private life.

Now then, can Christian Science introduce the Congressional Blush? There are Christian Private Morals, but there are no Christian Public Morals, at the polls, or in Congress or anywhere else—except here and there and scattered around like lost comets in the solar system. Can Christian Science persuade the nation and Congress to throw away their public morals and use none but their private ones henceforth in all their activities, both public and private?

I do not think so; but no matter about me: there is the field—a grand one, a splendid one, a sublime one, and absolutely unoccupied. Has Christian Science confidence enough in itself to undertake to enter in and try to possess it?

Make the effort, Christian Science; it is a most noble cause, and it might succeed. It could succeed. Then we should have a new literature, with romances entitled, How To Be an Honest Congressman Though a Christian; How To Be a Creditable Citizen Though a Christian.



Well, when I had been dead about thirty years I begun to get a little anxious. Mind you, had been whizzing through space all that time, like a comet. LIKE a comet! Why, Peters, I laid over the lot of them! Of course there warn't any of them going my way, as a steady thing, you know, because they travel in a long circle like the loop of a lasso, whereas I was pointed as straight as a dart for the Hereafter; but I happened on one every now and then that was going my way for an hour or so, and then we had a bit of a brush together. But it was generally pretty one-sided, because I sailed by them the same as if they were standing still. An ordinary comet don't make more than about 200,000 miles a minute. Of course when I came across one of that sort—like Encke's and Halley's comets, for instance—it warn't anything but just a flash and a vanish, you see. You couldn't rightly call it a race. It was as if the comet was a gravel-train and I was a telegraph despatch. But after I got outside of our astronomical system, I used to flush a comet occasionally that was something LIKE. WE haven't got any such comets—ours don't begin. One night I was swinging along at a good round gait, everything taut and trim, and the wind in my favor—I judged I was going about a million miles a minute—it might have been more, it couldn't have been less—when I flushed a most uncommonly big one about three points off my starboard bow. By his stern lights I judged he was bearing about northeast-and-by-north-half-east. Well, it was so near my course that I wouldn't throw away the chance; so I fell off a point, steadied my helm, and went for him. You should have heard me whiz, and seen the electric fur fly! In about a minute and a half I was fringed out with an electrical nimbus that flamed around for miles and miles and lit up all space like broad day. The comet was burning blue in the distance, like a sickly torch, when I first sighted him, but he begun to grow bigger and bigger as I crept up on him. I slipped up on him so fast that when I had gone about 150,000,000 miles I was close enough to be swallowed up in the phosphorescent glory of his wake, and I couldn't see anything for the glare. Thinks I, it won't do to run into him, so I shunted to one side and tore along. By and by I closed up abreast of his tail. Do you know what it was like? It was like a gnat closing up on the continent of America. I forged along. By and by I had sailed along his coast for a little upwards of a hundred and fifty million miles, and then I could see by the shape of him that I hadn't even got up to his waistband yet. Why, Peters, WE don't know anything about comets, down here. If you want to see comets that ARE comets, you've got to go outside of our solar system —where there's room for them, you understand. My friend, I've seen comets out there that couldn't even lay down inside the ORBITS of our noblest comets without their tails hanging over.

Well, I boomed along another hundred and fifty million miles, and got up abreast his shoulder, as you may say. I was feeling pretty fine, I tell you; but just then I noticed the officer of the deck come to the side and hoist his glass in my direction. Straight off I heard him sing out—"Below there, ahoy! Shake her up, shake her up! Heave on a hundred million billion tons of brimstone!"

"Ay-ay, sir!"

"Pipe the stabboard watch! All hands on deck!"

"Ay-ay, sir!"

"Send two hundred thousand million men aloft to shake out royals and sky-scrapers!"

"Ay-ay, sir!"

"Hand the stuns'ls! Hang out every rag you've got! Clothe her from stem to rudder-post!"

"Ay-ay, sir!"

In about a second I begun to see I'd woke up a pretty ugly customer, Peters. In less than ten seconds that comet was just a blazing cloud of red-hot canvas. It was piled up into the heavens clean out of sight—the old thing seemed to swell out and occupy all space; the sulphur smoke from the furnaces—oh, well, nobody can describe the way it rolled and tumbled up into the skies, and nobody can half describe the way it smelt. Neither can anybody begin to describe the way that monstrous craft begun to crash along. And such another powwow—thousands of bo's'n's whistles screaming at once, and a crew like the populations of a hundred thousand worlds like ours all swearing at once. Well, I never heard the like of it before.

We roared and thundered along side by side, both doing our level best, because I'd never struck a comet before that could lay over me, and so I was bound to beat this one or break something. I judged I had some reputation in space, and I calculated to keep it. I noticed I wasn't gaining as fast, now, as I was before, but still I was gaining. There was a power of excitement on board the comet. Upwards of a hundred billion passengers swarmed up from below and rushed to the side and begun to bet on the race. Of course this careened her and damaged her speed. My, but wasn't the mate mad! He jumped at that crowd, with his trumpet in his hand, and sung out—

"Amidships! amidships, you! {1} or I'll brain the last idiot of you!"

Well, sir, I gained and gained, little by little, till at last I went skimming sweetly by the magnificent old conflagration's nose. By this time the captain of the comet had been rousted out, and he stood there in the red glare for'ard, by the mate, in his shirt-sleeves and slippers, his hair all rats' nests and one suspender hanging, and how sick those two men did look! I just simply couldn't help putting my thumb to my nose as I glided away and singing out:

"Ta-ta! ta-ta! Any word to send to your family?"

Peters, it was a mistake. Yes, sir, I've often regretted that—it was a mistake. You see, the captain had given up the race, but that remark was too tedious for him—he couldn't stand it. He turned to the mate, and says he—

"Have we got brimstone enough of our own to make the trip?"

"Yes, sir."


"Yes, sir—more than enough."

"How much have we got in cargo for Satan?"

"Eighteen hundred thousand billion quintillions of kazarks."

"Very well, then, let his boarders freeze till the next comet comes. Lighten ship! Lively, now, lively, men! Heave the whole cargo overboard!"

Peters, look me in the eye, and be calm. I found out, over there, that a kazark is exactly the bulk of a HUNDRED AND SIXTY-NINE WORLDS LIKE OURS! They hove all that load overboard. When it fell it wiped out a considerable raft of stars just as clean as if they'd been candles and somebody blowed them out. As for the race, that was at an end. The minute she was lightened the comet swung along by me the same as if I was anchored. The captain stood on the stern, by the after-davits, and put his thumb to his nose and sung out—

"Ta-ta! ta-ta! Maybe YOU'VE got some message to send your friends in the Everlasting Tropics!"

Then he hove up his other suspender and started for'ard, and inside of three-quarters of an hour his craft was only a pale torch again in the distance. Yes, it was a mistake, Peters—that remark of mine. I don't reckon I'll ever get over being sorry about it. I'd 'a' beat the bully of the firmament if I'd kept my mouth shut.

But I've wandered a little off the track of my tale; I'll get back on my course again. Now you see what kind of speed I was making. So, as I said, when I had been tearing along this way about thirty years I begun to get uneasy. Oh, it was pleasant enough, with a good deal to find out, but then it was kind of lonesome, you know. Besides, I wanted to get somewhere. I hadn't shipped with the idea of cruising forever. First off, I liked the delay, because I judged I was going to fetch up in pretty warm quarters when I got through; but towards the last I begun to feel that I'd rather go to—well, most any place, so as to finish up the uncertainty.

Well, one night—it was always night, except when I was rushing by some star that was occupying the whole universe with its fire and its glare—light enough then, of course, but I necessarily left it behind in a minute or two and plunged into a solid week of darkness again. The stars ain't so close together as they look to be. Where was I? Oh yes; one night I was sailing along, when I discovered a tremendous long row of blinking lights away on the horizon ahead. As I approached, they begun to tower and swell and look like mighty furnaces. Says I to myself—

"By George, I've arrived at last—and at the wrong place, just as I expected!"

Then I fainted. I don't know how long I was insensible, but it must have been a good while, for, when I came to, the darkness was all gone and there was the loveliest sunshine and the balmiest, fragrantest air in its place. And there was such a marvellous world spread out before me—such a glowing, beautiful, bewitching country. The things I took for furnaces were gates, miles high, made all of flashing jewels, and they pierced a wall of solid gold that you couldn't see the top of, nor yet the end of, in either direction. I was pointed straight for one of these gates, and a-coming like a house afire. Now I noticed that the skies were black with millions of people, pointed for those gates. What a roar they made, rushing through the air! The ground was as thick as ants with people, too—billions of them, I judge.

I lit. I drifted up to a gate with a swarm of people, and when it was my turn the head clerk says, in a business-like way—

"Well, quick! Where are you from?"

"San Francisco," says I.

"San Fran—WHAT?" says he.

"San Francisco."

He scratched his head and looked puzzled, then he says—

"Is it a planet?"

By George, Peters, think of it! "PLANET?" says I; "it's a city. And moreover, it's one of the biggest and finest and—"

"There, there!" says he, "no time here for conversation. We don't deal in cities here. Where are you from in a GENERAL way?"

"Oh," I says, "I beg your pardon. Put me down for California."

I had him AGAIN, Peters! He puzzled a second, then he says, sharp and irritable—

"I don't know any such planet—is it a constellation?"

"Oh, my goodness!" says I. "Constellation, says you? No—it's a State."

"Man, we don't deal in States here. WILL you tell me where you are from IN GENERAL—AT LARGE, don't you understand?"

"Oh, now I get your idea," I says. "I'm from America,—the United States of America."

Peters, do you know I had him AGAIN? If I hadn't I'm a clam! His face was as blank as a target after a militia shooting-match. He turned to an under clerk and says—

"Where is America? WHAT is America?"

The under clerk answered up prompt and says—

"There ain't any such orb."

"ORB?" says I. "Why, what are you talking about, young man? It ain't an orb; it's a country; it's a continent. Columbus discovered it; I reckon likely you've heard of HIM, anyway. America—why, sir, America—"

"Silence!" says the head clerk. "Once for all, where—are—you—FROM?"

"Well," says I, "I don't know anything more to say—unless I lump things, and just say I'm from the world."

"Ah," says he, brightening up, "now that's something like! WHAT world?"

Peters, he had ME, that time. I looked at him, puzzled, he looked at me, worried. Then he burst out—

"Come, come, what world?"

Says I, "Why, THE world, of course."

"THE world!" he says. "H'm! there's billions of them! . . . Next!"

That meant for me to stand aside. I done so, and a sky-blue man with seven heads and only one leg hopped into my place. I took a walk. It just occurred to me, then, that all the myriads I had seen swarming to that gate, up to this time, were just like that creature. I tried to run across somebody I was acquainted with, but they were out of acquaintances of mine just then. So I thought the thing all over and finally sidled back there pretty meek and feeling rather stumped, as you may say.

"Well?" said the head clerk.

"Well, sir," I says, pretty humble, "I don't seem to make out which world it is I'm from. But you may know it from this—it's the one the Saviour saved."

He bent his head at the Name. Then he says, gently—

"The worlds He has saved are like to the gates of heaven in number —none can count them. What astronomical system is your world in? —perhaps that may assist."

"It's the one that has the sun in it—and the moon—and Mars"—he shook his head at each name—hadn't ever heard of them, you see —"and Neptune—and Uranus—and Jupiter—"

"Hold on!" says he—"hold on a minute! Jupiter . . . Jupiter . . . Seems to me we had a man from there eight or nine hundred years ago—but people from that system very seldom enter by this gate." All of a sudden he begun to look me so straight in the eye that I thought he was going to bore through me. Then he says, very deliberate, "Did you come STRAIGHT HERE from your system?"

"Yes, sir," I says—but I blushed the least little bit in the world when I said it.

He looked at me very stern, and says—

"That is not true; and this is not the place for prevarication. You wandered from your course. How did that happen?"

Says I, blushing again—

"I'm sorry, and I take back what I said, and confess. I raced a little with a comet one day—only just the least little bit—only the tiniest lit—"

"So—so," says he—and without any sugar in his voice to speak of.

I went on, and says—

"But I only fell off just a bare point, and I went right back on my course again the minute the race was over."

"No matter—that divergence has made all this trouble. It has brought you to a gate that is billions of leagues from the right one. If you had gone to your own gate they would have known all about your world at once and there would have been no delay. But we will try to accommodate you." He turned to an under clerk and says—

"What system is Jupiter in?"

"I don't remember, sir, but I think there is such a planet in one of the little new systems away out in one of the thinly worlded corners of the universe. I will see."

He got a balloon and sailed up and up and up, in front of a map that was as big as Rhode Island. He went on up till he was out of sight, and by and by he came down and got something to eat and went up again. To cut a long story short, he kept on doing this for a day or two, and finally he came down and said he thought he had found that solar system, but it might be fly-specks. So he got a microscope and went back. It turned out better than he feared. He had rousted out our system, sure enough. He got me to describe our planet and its distance from the sun, and then he says to his chief—

"Oh, I know the one he means, now, sir. It is on the map. It is called the Wart."

Says I to myself, "Young man, it wouldn't be wholesome for you to go down THERE and call it the Wart."

Well, they let me in, then, and told me I was safe forever and wouldn't have any more trouble.

Then they turned from me and went on with their work, the same as if they considered my case all complete and shipshape. I was a good deal surprised at this, but I was diffident about speaking up and reminding them. I did so hate to do it, you know; it seemed a pity to bother them, they had so much on their hands. Twice I thought I would give up and let the thing go; so twice I started to leave, but immediately I thought what a figure I should cut stepping out amongst the redeemed in such a rig, and that made me hang back and come to anchor again. People got to eying me —clerks, you know—wondering why I didn't get under way. I couldn't stand this long—it was too uncomfortable. So at last I plucked up courage and tipped the head clerk a signal. He says—

"What! you here yet? What's wanting?"

Says I, in a low voice and very confidential, making a trumpet with my hands at his ear—

"I beg pardon, and you mustn't mind my reminding you, and seeming to meddle, but hain't you forgot something?"

He studied a second, and says—

"Forgot something? . . . No, not that I know of."

"Think," says I.

He thought. Then he says—

"No, I can't seem to have forgot anything. What is it?"

"Look at me," says I, "look me all over."

He done it.

"Well?" says he.

"Well," says I, "you don't notice anything? If I branched out amongst the elect looking like this, wouldn't I attract considerable attention?—wouldn't I be a little conspicuous?"

"Well," he says, "I don't see anything the matter. What do you lack?"

"Lack! Why, I lack my harp, and my wreath, and my halo, and my hymn-book, and my palm branch—I lack everything that a body naturally requires up here, my friend."

Puzzled? Peters, he was the worst puzzled man you ever saw. Finally he says—

"Well, you seem to be a curiosity every way a body takes you. I never heard of these things before."

I looked at the man awhile in solid astonishment; then I says—

"Now, I hope you don't take it as an offence, for I don't mean any, but really, for a man that has been in the Kingdom as long as I reckon you have, you do seem to know powerful little about its customs."

"Its customs!" says he. "Heaven is a large place, good friend. Large empires have many and diverse customs. Even small dominions have, as you doubtless know by what you have seen of the matter on a small scale in the Wart. How can you imagine I could ever learn the varied customs of the countless kingdoms of heaven? It makes my head ache to think of it. I know the customs that prevail in those portions inhabited by peoples that are appointed to enter by my own gate—and hark ye, that is quite enough knowledge for one individual to try to pack into his head in the thirty-seven millions of years I have devoted night and day to that study. But the idea of learning the customs of the whole appalling expanse of heaven—O man, how insanely you talk! Now I don't doubt that this odd costume you talk about is the fashion in that district of heaven you belong to, but you won't be conspicuous in this section without it."

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