Did Mary Baker Eddy say it? “There is no other mind to tempt me…”

November 7, 2022

John Lathrop, seated across from Mary Baker Eddy’s desk at Pleasant View, Concord, New Hampshire. Undated.

John Carroll Lathrop, seated across from Mary Baker Eddy’s desk at Pleasant View, Concord, New Hampshire, n.d. P01107

We are often asked about a prayer that is often attributed to Mary Baker Eddy, which includes words along these lines: 

There is no other mind to tempt me, harm me, or control me. I spiritually understand this, and am master of the occasion. 

Some accounts claim that Eddy provided this counsel to her student Laura V. Lathrop, after asking her to organize Second Church of Christ, Scientist, in New York City.

This anecdote is included in two addresses attributed to Dorothy B. Rieke, a Christian Science practitioner who was the wife of Christian Science teacher and lecturer Herbert Rieke—“Immortality Brought to Light” and “Wonderful Things Are Happening.” They never were published by The Christian Science Publishing Society. In fact, we are unable to locate the text of this prayer anywhere in our collection. As a result, we can’t authenticate its content.

However, we have come across a similar statement that we can indeed verify. In a 1905 letter, Eddy said this to John Carroll Lathrop, Laura Lathrop’s son: 

Dear one, there is but one Mind this one is yours, mine, and governs all. All our thoughts come to us from this Mind and return to their source…. Now know this, realize it, and you are the master of the occasion, the master of yourself and of others.1 

John Lathrop had attended Eddy’s last class in November 1898. In 1903 and 1907 he served on her household staff when she was living in Concord, New Hampshire. He returned to serve again in 1908, after she had moved to Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

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  1. Mary Baker Eddy to John Carroll Lathrop, 22 June 1905, L04285.