Explains why he must decline to write for the Index: his health is poor and he has never systematically thought much on religion. FEA may print his comments, "with qualifications", if he wishes.
Down, | Beckenham, Kent.
My dear Sir
I have read again ``Truths for the Times'', & abide by my words as strictly true. If you still think fit to publish them, you had better perhaps omit ``I believe'' & add ``almost'' to every word—so that it will run &lldots;&lldots;``& I agree to almost every word.'' The points on which I doubtfully differ are unimportant but it is better to be accurate.
I can say with entire truth that I feel honoured by your request that I
Now I have never systematically thought much on Religions, in relation to
Science, or on morals in relation to society, & without steadily
keeping my mind on such subjects for a long period, I am really incapable of
writing anything worth sending to the Index. Many years ago I was strongly advised by a
friend never to introduce anything about religion—in my works, if I
wished to advance science in England; & this led me not to consider the mutual
bearings of the two subjects. Had I foreseen, how much more liberal the world
would become, I sh
With entire respect & good wishes. believe me, My dear Sir | Yours sincerely | Ch. Darwin
I see I have not thanked you for the extreme kindness of your letter, received this morning.—