Quotations about   subjectivity

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It was always my hope in writing novels and stories which asked the question, “what is reality?”, to someday get an answer. This was the hope of most of my readers, too. Years passed. I wrote over thirty novels and over a hundred stories and I still couldn’t figure out what was real. One day a girl college student in Canada asked me to define reality for her, for a paper she was writing for her philosophy class. She wanted a one-sentence answer. I thought about it and finally said, “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.” That’s all I could come up with. That was back in 1972. Since then I haven’t been able to define reality any more lucidly.

Philip K. Dick (1928-1982) American writer
“How To Build A Universe That Doesn’t Fall Apart Two Days Later” (1978)
Added on 18-Jan-19 | Last updated 18-Jan-19
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In fact we say that an intention is good, that is, right in itself, but that an action does not bear any good in itself but proceeds from a good intention. Whence when the same thing is done by the same man at different times, by the diversity of his intention, however, his action is now said to be good, now bad.

Bonam quippe intentionem, hoc est, rectam in se dicimus, operationem vero non quod boni aliquid in se suscipiat, sed quod ex bona intentione procedat. Unde et ab eodem homine cum in diversis temporibus idem fiat, pro diversitate tamen intentione eius operatio modo bono modo mala dicitur.

Peter Abelard (1079-1142) French philosopher, theologian, logician [Pierre Abélard]
Ethics [Ethica], Book 1 [tr. Luscombe (1971)]
Added on 7-Feb-14 | Last updated 7-Feb-14
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No man is happy who does not think himself so.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 584
Added on 31-Jul-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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