„There is something to be said for every error; but, whatever may be said for it, the most important thing to be said about it is that it is erroneous.“

—  Gilbert Keith Chesterton, The Illustrated London News (25 April 1931)
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„A hallucination is a fact, not an error; what is erroneous is a judgment based upon it.“

—  Bertrand Russell logician, one of the first analytic philosophers and political activist 1872 - 1970
Context: People are said to believe in God, or to disbelieve in Adam and Eve. But in such cases what is believed or disbelieved is that there is an entity answering a certain description. This, which can be believed or disbelieved is quite different from the actual entity (if any) which does answer the description. Thus the matter of belief is, in all cases, different in kind from the matter of sensation or presentation, and error is in no way analogous to hallucination. A hallucination is a fact, not an error; what is erroneous is a judgment based upon it. On the Nature of Acquaintance: Neutral Monism (1914)

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„Job abandoned his first very erroneous opinion, and himself proved that it was an error.“

—  Maimónides rabbi, physician, philosopher 1135 - 1204
Context: The words of God are justified, as I will show, by the fact that Job abandoned his first very erroneous opinion, and himself proved that it was an error. It is the opinion which suggests itself as plausible at first thought, especially in the minds of those who meet with mishap, well knowing that they have not merited them through sins. This is admitted by all, and therefore this opinion was assigned to Job. But he is represented to hold this view only so long as he was without wisdom, and knew God only by tradition, in the same manner as religious people generally know Him. As soon as he had acquired a true knowledge of God, he confessed that there is undoubtedly true felicity in the knowledge of God; it is attained by all who acquire that knowledge, and no earthly trouble can disturb it. So long as Job's knowledge of God was based on tradition and communication, and not on research, he believed that such imaginary good as is possessed in health, riches, and children, was the utmost that men can attain; this was the reason why he was in perplexity, and why he uttered the... opinions, and this is also the meaning of his words: "I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear; but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent because of dust and ashes" (xlii. 5, 6); that is to say, he abhorred all that he had desired before, and that he was sorry that he had been in dust and ashes; comp. "and he sat down among the ashes" (ii. 8) On account of this last utterance, which implies true perception, it is said afterwards in reference to him, "for you have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath." Ch.23

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„I have been pronounced by the Holy Office to be vehemently suspected of heresy, that is to say, of having held and believed that the Sun is the center of the world and immovable, and that the earth is not the center and moves:
Therefore, desiring to remove from the minds of your Eminences, and of all faithful Christians, this vehement suspicion, justly conceived against me, with sincere heart and unfeigned faith I abjure, curse, and detest the aforesaid errors and heresies, and generally every other error, heresy, and sect whatsoever contrary to the said Holy Church“

—  Galileo Galilei Italian mathematician, physicist, philosopher and astronomer 1564 - 1642
Context: After an injunction had been judicially intimated to me by this Holy Office, to the effect that I must altogether abandon the false opinion that the sun is the center of the world and immovable, and that the earth is not the center of the world, and moves, and that I must not hold, defend, or teach in any way whatsoever, verbally or in writing, the said false doctrine, and after it had been notified to me that the said doctrine was contrary to Holy Scripture — I wrote and printed a book in which I discuss this new doctrine already condemned, and adduce arguments of great cogency in its favor, without presenting any solution of these, and for this reason I have been pronounced by the Holy Office to be vehemently suspected of heresy, that is to say, of having held and believed that the Sun is the center of the world and immovable, and that the earth is not the center and moves: Therefore, desiring to remove from the minds of your Eminences, and of all faithful Christians, this vehement suspicion, justly conceived against me, with sincere heart and unfeigned faith I abjure, curse, and detest the aforesaid errors and heresies, and generally every other error, heresy, and sect whatsoever contrary to the said Holy Church, and I swear that in the future I will never again say or assert, verbally or in writing, anything that might furnish occasion for a similar suspicion regarding me; but that should I know any heretic, or person suspected of heresy, I will denounce him to this Holy Office, or to the Inquisitor or Ordinary of the place where I may be. Further, I swear and promise to fulfill and observe in their integrity all penances that have been, or that shall be, imposed upon me by this Holy Office. And, in the event of my contravening, (which God forbid) any of these my promises and oaths, I submit myself to all the pains and penalties imposed and promulgated in the sacred canons and other constitutions, general and particular, against such delinquents. So help me God, and these His Holy Gospels, which I touch with my hands. I, the said Galileo Galilei, have abjured, sworn, promised, and bound myself as above; and in witness of the truth thereof I have with my own hand subscribed the present document of my abjuration, and recited it word for word at Rome, in the Convent of Minerva, this twenty-second day of June, 1633. Recantation (22 June 1633) as quoted in The Crime of Galileo (1955) by Giorgio de Santillana, p. 312 http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/galileo/recantation.html. <!-- also in Galileo's Mistake (2012) by Wade Rowland -->

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„“Your predator is close behind you and will infallibly be your death.”
“I don’t doubt it,” Carmody said, in a moment of strange calm.” But in terms of long-range planning, I never did expect to get out of this Universe alive.”
“That is meaningless,” the Prize said. “The fact is, you have lost everything.”
“I don’t agree,” Carmody said. “Permit me to point out that I am presently still alive.”
“Agreed. But only for the moment.”
“I have always been alive only for the moment,” Carmody said. “I could never count on more. It was my error to expect more. That holds true, I believe, for all of my possible and potential circumstances.”
“Then what do you hope to achieve with your moment?”
“Nothing,” Carmody said. “Everything.”
“I don’t understand you any longer,” the Prize said. “Something about you has changed, Carmody. What is it?”
“A minor thing,” Carmody told him. “I have simply given up a longevity which I never possessed anyhow. I have turned away from the con game which the Gods run in their heavenly sideshow. I no longer care under which shell the pea of immortality might be found. I don’t need it. I have my moment, which is quite enough.”
“Saint Carmody,” the Prize said, in tones of deepest sarcasm. “No more than a shadow’s breadth separates you and death! What will you do now with your pitiable moment?”
“I shall continue to live it,” Carmody said. “That is what moments are for.”“

—  Robert Sheckley American writer 1928 - 2005
Chapter 28 (pp. 189-190; closing words)

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