Accession: L13359
Editorial Title: Mary Baker Eddy to Alice M. Sibley, August 6, 1880
Author: Mary Baker Eddy 
Recipient: Alice M. Sibley 
Date: August 6, 1880 - archivist estimate
Manuscript Description: Handwritten by Mary Baker Eddy on lined paper.
Final Edits
Original Document

L13359
-
My dear Alice,

Your interesting letterEditorial Note: This letter is not extant. came duly. I cannot burn it until I answer it and will do so before I lay it out of sight; and then I will do as you requestEditorial Note: Alice Sibley had apparently requested that Mary Baker Eddy burn Sibley’s letter after reading it. (for your sake) but I do dislike to commit to the devouring flames a line from you

Now to the question of this unrest. It must not be so, I have kept you away from me fearing it was so. They accuse me of causing these strong attachments voluntarily, but I assure you it is not so. I try always to avoid them for I have always observed they are not apt to end as well as a more moderate and kind of calm, strong friendship. Remember the old adage "Friendship may end in love but love in friendship neverEditorial Note: This aphorism is from Charles Caleb Colton. Colton (1780 – 1832) was an eccentric British minister, writer, and collector."

Now dear one, I confess to having thought of you seldom, but always with the same kindness and appreciation of your great goodness—since last we met. But before your letter arrived I commenced talking of my little Alice and in a hour I had your own penned conversation.

Every word of the heart that you confided to me is sacred, and none shall profane it with an idle gaze. But dear one, do not speak in that way of me to anyone else and do not cherish those feelings, as you say, they tend not to your happiness.

They are natural to such temperaments but a little morbid, and the summer of your years must not have the clouds of winter and storms that rend the sweet flowers and clinging vines. O, may God in his dear Love spare you my experience, and ever keep you in his arms shielded from sorrow.

"Life is real, life is earnest and the grave is not its goalEditorial Note: From the second stanza of A Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 – 1882): “Life is real! Life is earnest! / And the grave is not its goal; / Dust thou art, to dust returnest, / Was not spoken of the soul.”" Busy your thoughts with noble plans and keep persons out of mind. Let your daily duties interest you, and the loving thoughts of a Mother cheer and satisfy your mind.

"We shall meet beyond the riverEditorial Note: More than one hymn written in Mary Baker Eddy’s lifetime speaks of “meeting beyond the river.” One of the most popular of these was written by Horace Lorenzo Hastings (1831 – 1899), with music by Elihu S. Rice. It begins, “Shall we meet beyond the river, / Where the surges cease to roll; / Where in all the bright forever / Sorrow ne’er shall press the soul?”", and perhaps in early Autumn you can come where I amEditorial Note: Mary Baker Eddy and Asa Gilbert Eddy spent July and August of 1880 in Concord, New Hampshire.; but say not a word of this "My times are in His handsPs 31:14 But I trusted in thee, O Lord: I said, Thou art my God. Ps 31:15 My times are in thy hand: deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me. "

With love and a strong desire for you to turn your thoughts away from me I am as Ever

Your friend
M B G Eddy
L13359
-
My dear Alice,

Your interesting letterEditorial Note: This letter is not extant. came duly. I cannot burn it until I answer it and will do so before I lay it out of sight; and then I will do as you requestEditorial Note: Alice Sibley had apparently requested that Mary Baker Eddy burn Sibley’s letter after reading it. (for your sake) but I do dislike to commit to the devouring flames a line from you

Now to the question of this unrest. It must not be so, I have kept you away from me fearing it was so. They accuse me of causing these strong attachments voluntarily, but I assure you it is not so. I try always to avoid them for I have always observed they are not apt to end as well as a more moderate and kind of calm, strong friendship. Remember the old adage "Friendship may end in love but love in friendship neverEditorial Note: This aphorism is from Charles Caleb Colton. Colton (1780 – 1832) was an eccentric British minister, writer, and collector."

Now dear one, I confess to having thought of you seldom, but always with the same kindness and appreciation of your great goodness—since last we met. But before your letter arrived I commenced talking of my little Alice and in a hour I had your own penned conversation.

Every word of the heart that you confided to me is sacred, and none shall profane it with an idle gaze. But dear one, do not speak in that way of me to anyone else and do not cherish those feelings, as you say, they tend not to your happiness.

They are natural to such temperaments but a little morbid, and the summer of your years must not have the clouds of winter and storms that rend the sweet flowers and clinging vines. O, may God in his dear Love spare you my experience, and ever keep you in his arms shielded from sorrow.

"Life is real, life is earnest and the grave is not its goalEditorial Note: From the second stanza of A Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 – 1882): “Life is real! Life is earnest! / And the grave is not its goal; / Dust thou art, to dust returnest, / Was not spoken of the soul.”" Busy your thoughts with noble plans and keep persons out of mind. Let your daily duties interest you, and the loving thoughts of a Mother cheer and satisfy your mind.

"We shall meet beyond the riverEditorial Note: More than one hymn written in Mary Baker Eddy’s lifetime speaks of “meeting beyond the river.” One of the most popular of these was written by Horace Lorenzo Hastings (1831 – 1899), with music by Elihu S. Rice. It begins, “Shall we meet beyond the river, / Where the surges cease to roll; / Where in all the bright forever / Sorrow ne’er shall press the soul?”", and perhaps in early Autumn you can come where I amEditorial Note: Mary Baker Eddy and Asa Gilbert Eddy spent July and August of 1880 in Concord, New Hampshire.; but say not a word of this "My times are in His handsPs 31:14 But I trusted in thee, O Lord: I said, Thou art my God. Ps 31:15 My times are in thy hand: deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me. "

With love and a strong desire for you to turn your thoughts away from me I am as Ever

Your friend
M B G Eddy