From ‘Epistles – Fourth Series’-chapter -V of Volume 8 of The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda.

To Miss Mary Hale

921, WEST 21ST ST.,
27th December, 1899.


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and many, many glorious returns of such for your birthday. All these wishes, prayers, greetings in one breath. I am cured, you will be glad to know. It was only indigestion and no heart or kidney affection, quoth the healers; nothing more. And I am walking three miles a day — after a heavy dinner.

Say — the person healing me insisted on my smoking! So I am having my pipe nicely and am all the better for it. In plain English the nervousness etc. was all due to dyspepsia and nothing more.

. . . I am at work too; working, working, not hard; but I don’t care, and I want to make money this time. Tell this to Margot, especially the pipe business. You know who is healing me? No physician, no Christian Science healer, but a magnetic healing woman who skins me every time she treats me. Wonders — she performs operations by rubbing — internal operations too, her patients tell me.

It is getting late in the night. I have to give up writing separate letters to Margot, Harriet, Isabelle, and Mother Church. Wish is half the work. They all know how I love them dearly, passionately; so you become the medium for my spirit for the time, and carry them my New Year’s messages.

It is exactly like Northern Indian winter here, only some days a little warmer; the roses are here and the beautiful palms. Barley is in the fields, roses and many other flowers round about the cottage where I live. Mrs. Blodgett, my host, is a Chicago lady — fat, old, and extremely witty. She heard me in Chicago and is very motherly.

I am so sorry, the English have caught a Tartar in South Africa. A soldier on duty outside a camp bawled out that he had caught a Tartar. “Bring him in”, was the order from inside the tent. “He will not come”, replied the sentry. “Then you come yourself”, rang the order again. “He will not let me come either”. Hence the phrase “to catch a Tartar”. Don’t you catch any.

I am happy just now and hope to remain so for all the rest of my life. Just now I am Christian Science — no evil, and “love is a drawing card”.

I shall be very happy if I can make a lot of money. I am making some. Tell Margot, I am going to make a lot of money and go home by way of Japan, Honolulu, China, and Java. This is a nice place to make money quick in; and San Francisco is better, I hear. Has she made any?

You could not get the millionaire. Why don’t you start for half or one-fourth million? Something is better than nothing. We want money; he may go into Lake Michigan, we have not the least objection. We had a bit of an earthquake here the other day. I hope it has gone to Chicago and raised Isabelle’s mud-puddle up. It is getting late. I am yawning, so here I quit.

Good-bye; all blessings, all love,