Overcoming Error

When I read in the Monitor some time ago of an invention which was being tried by a railroad company in Canada for the control of trains with the view of avoiding accidents, the thought came to me that an invention which would sound an alarm on approach of trouble and so avoid disaster and waste in the business in which I am engaged would be a great boon to every one connected with it. Then I recalled an incident which took place only a short time before, and which showed me that the remedy was at hand but was not applied so sedulously as it should be.

For a number of years I have held positions of more or less importance in printing establishments, and being in such positions I have learned that in manufacturing printed matter it seems impossible to avoid blunders and accidents of various kinds. When these occur they cause loss of time and waste of material in one department or another; and this fact has seemingly brought a nervous fear upon many who follow the business. One day, while sitting at my desk, I felt constrained to walk back into the pressroom, a department over which I had no control, and as I passed one of the presses I noticed that a brass rule in the form which was being printed, had worked up and was cutting through the paper, thus spoiling it. I pointed to the sheet, and the pressman stopped the press to remedy the trouble. He remarked that it was lucky I saw it, as his attention was given to other work at the time.

On examination it was found that only four sheets had been spoiled. At the rate the press was running, at least thirty sheets would have gone through the press in the time it took me to walk from my desk to the place where the press stands. What was it that prompted me to go back there among the presses? Was it not the same intelligence that governs and controls all right action? or "angels," as we read in Science and Health, "God's thoughts passing to man; spiritual intuitions" (p. 581)? The impulse was at once obeyed, even without knowing why I was doing it; and it came before that piece of rule had worked loose enough to do any appreciable damage, so that prompt action prevented waste.

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March 20, 1915

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