Icon, I understand where you're going with this, and there really can be much said about learning from one's mistakes. However, let's not take this too far. Let's not praise people that are wrong, for, well, being wrong. Being wrong isn't something we should strive
for, is it? There's certainly something to be said about those who are too
comfortable about being wrong. I think, as you say, we shouldn't think we're terrible for making mistakes, but I also don't think we should seep in the hot water of wrongness comfortability for too long, either. This can lead to a stagnant mind.
It seems, however, that being wrong is one of the best things that can happen to you. As you assume that you are correct, you turn a blind eye to other options and possibilities which may, and often do, conflict with your notions of right, wrong, accurate, inaccurate and so forth.
This can certainly be true, but can't it also be true that assuming you're wrong can also hinder your growth? Perhaps assuming you're right
about something will allow you to learn about a derivative topic you couldn't have reached unless you initially made the assumption. Einstein couldn't have made the breakthroughs he did if he never assumed he was right about energy and mass and their mathematical equivalence. The examples obviously go on.
Next, we must consider the semantics of "wrong" or "right".
1.) Example: 1+1=3. wrong
2.) Example: Philadelphia is the capital of Pennsylvania. wrong
How do each of these answers compare even though they're both wrong? Could either of these answers be right? The second answer could, at some point in time, become right. The capital could change. Most would agree 1+1=2 is tautological though and cannot change. The point is, our usage of "wrong" and "right" differ here; in the former we are using a fixed logical system (tautology), and in the latter we are not. We must keep this in mind.
Next, how do these aforementioned wrongs and rights compare to the wrongs and rights found in moral judgment calls?
3.) Example: Mary is a bad person. right
There's a difference when we say we're wrong or right here, as there's no definitive logical system (such as mathematics) where we can evaluate our answer. Many people may think Mary is a bad person, but you may think Mary is not a bad person. Who would be right in this case, and how do wrongs and rights in examples such as these compare to examples #1 and #2?
Lastly, we must take our values, interests, and personalities into consideration. Why? Well, my being "wrong" about a variable calculus answer will not make me feel the same way as my being "wrong" about someone's character. Personally, I pride myself on my perception in social interaction, so I would be more grief stricken if I found out I was wrong about Mary than if I found out I was wrong about a math problem. Of course, that's just me, and everyone will vary.
So, then, let's tie this all up in a neat little box (I won't wrap it yet because I think I'll add more later).
- Becoming too comfortable with being wrong can be just as harmful as being too ignorant to learn what is right.
- Semantics must be considered -- What do we mean by "wrong" or "right; in what context are these words being used?
- Personalities and values must be considered -- Being "wrong" or being "right" can best be understood after evaluating the individual experiencing and could mean drastically different things for different people!