"Miscellaneous Writings" by Mary Baker Eddy Questions, Answers, and Literary Friendships

[The third of a series of six articles as published in the current issue of The Christian Science Journal]

THE wisdom and clarity of thought manifested in the answers to questions sent to Mrs. Eddy during the early years of Christian Science, as they appear in "Miscellaneous Writings," deeply impress every reader. That she was dealing with divine Science, which was revolutionary both in its theology and its philosophy, she was fully aware. Moreover, she knew that her published words were being carefully examined by both friends and hostile critics. Hence the wise caution apparent in many of her answers.

When asked the name of the "critique" who, under the pen name of "Quibus," had made statements friendly to Christian Science in a Boston paper, Mrs. Eddy adroitly avoided a direct answer, and without offense turned the thought of the inquirer from the personality involved to the quality of the message he had written. By this means was avoided the bringing of a sympathetic personage into what might have developed into a personal controversy.

Christian Science was given to the world during the golden age of literature in New England. Among that notable galaxy of literary lights were those whose names have become household words throughout the English-speaking world. It was inevitable that the spiritual appeal of Mrs. Eddy's revelation should have found response with some, atleast, of those searchers for truth. That several, also, who had received and perused her textbook expressed sincere gratitude for its message, there is published evidence. In "Miscellaneous Writings" appear letters from Longfellow and A. Bronson Alcott acknowledging receipt of the book; and the latter expresses gratitude for the new star shining so brilliantly in the firmament of spiritual enlightenment. His own questing nature had responded to this newly revealed interpretation of the Master's teaching.

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