The amount of established facts is not identical with that of possible data Gillies 1998, 307. On account of the comparison between red-hot iron and the flame of spirits of wine for the iron is more hot and less bright, while the flame of spirits of wine is more bright and less hot , again reject flame and light. But a really useful induction for the discovery and demonstration of the arts and sciences should separate nature by proper rejections and exclusions, and then conclude for the affirmative, after collecting a sufficient number of negatives. Since, however, the industry of others must be quickened, and their courage roused and inflamed, it is right to recall some points to their memory. Hence all strong acids if adapted to the body on which they act exhibit the effects of fire, from their corroding and pungent nature. To attempt, however, or undertake their confutation would not be consistent with our declarations. We have a strong instance of this in the alchemists and their dogmas; it would be difficult to find another in this age, unless perhaps in the philosophy of Gilbert.
If, therefore, no one have laid down the real end of science, we cannot wonder that there should be error in points subordinate to that end. The form of heat or form of light, therefore, means no more than the law of heat or the law of light. We must also take into our consideration that many objects in nature fit to throw light upon philosophy have been exposed to our view, and discovered by means of long voyages and travels, in which our times have abounded. We neither dedicate nor raise a capitol or pyramid to the pride of man, but rear a holy temple in his mind, on the model of the universe, which model therefore we imitate. Those who have treated of the sciences have been either empirics or dogmatical.
But how sincere I am in my professions of affection and good will toward the received sciences, my published writings, especially the books on the advancement of learning, sufficiently show; and therefore I will not attempt to prove it further by words. The present discoveries in science are such as lie immediately beneath the surface of common notions. But this kind of experience is no better than a broom without its band, as the saying is — a mere groping, as of men in the dark, that feel all round them for the chance of finding their way, when they had much better wait for daylight, or light a candle, and then go. Nor do we speak only of the present systems, or of the philosophy and sects of the ancients, since numerous other plays of a similar nature can be still composed and made to agree with each other, the causes of the most opposite errors being generally the same. We bestow not our labour on such theoretical and, at the same time, useless topics. As early as Temporis partus masculus, Bacon warns the student of empirical science not to tackle the complexities of his subject without purging the mind of its idols: On waxen tablets you cannot write anything new until you rub out the old.
The contemplation of nature and of bodies in their individual form distracts and weakens the understanding; but the contemplation of nature and of bodies in their general composition and formation stupefies and relaxes it. . Thirdly, he will desire something to be shown him, which is not as difficult as the thing proposed to be done, but comes nearer to practice. Nor should we omit the sign afforded by the great dissension formerly prevalent among philosophers, and the variety of schools, which sufficiently show that the way was not well prepared, that leads from the senses to the understanding, since the same groundwork of philosophy namely, the nature of things was torn and divided into such widely differing and multifarious errors. But men of this kind, if they betake themselves to philosophy and contemplation of a general character, distort and color them in obedience to their former fancies; a thing especially to be noticed in Aristotle, who made his natural philosophy a mere bond servant to his logic, thereby rendering it contentious and well-nigh useless.
Eructations and eruptions of flame are found no less in cold than in warm countries, as in Iceland and Greenland. After our tables of first review, our rejection or exclusive table, and the first vintage derived from them, we must advance to the remaining helps of the understanding with regard to the interpretation of nature, and a true and perfect induction, in offering which we will take the examples of cold and heat where tables are necessary, but where fewer instances are required we will go through a variety of others, so as neither to confound investigation nor to narrow our doctrine. Aristotle had discussed logical fallacies, commonly found in human reasoning, but Bacon was original in looking behind the forms of reasoning to underlying psychological causes. The appearances we term falling stars are generally supposed to consist of some shining and inflamed viscous substance, rather than of violently hot matter; but let this be further investigated. Lastly, the usual method of discovery and proof, by first establishing the most general propositions, then applying and proving the intermediate axioms according to them, is the parent of error and the calamity of every science. Axioms, when rightly investigated and established, prepare us not for a limited but abundant practice, and bring in their train whole troops of effects.
For a knowledge of the signs prepares assent; an explanation of the causes removes the marvel — which two things will do much to render the extirpation of idols from the understanding more easy and gentle. Bacon in adversity showed patience, unimpaired vigour, and. The blow caught him when he was ill, and he pleaded for extra time to meet the charges, explaining that genuine illness, not cowardice, was the reason for his request. In the same way, if, before the discovery of silk, anyone had said that there was a kind of thread discovered for the purposes of dress and furniture which far surpassed the thread of linen or of wool in fineness and at the same time in strength, and also in beauty and softness, men would have begun immediately to think of some silky kind of vegetable, or of the finer hair of some animal, or of the feathers and down of birds; but a web woven by a tiny worm, and that in such abundance, and renewing itself yearly, they would assuredly never have thought. Truth is not to be sought in the good fortune of any particular conjuncture of time, which is uncertain, but in the light of nature and experience, which is eternal.
The rays of the sun reflected and condensed, as between mountains, or on walls, and most of all in burning glasses and mirrors. I have on my own part made it my care and study that the things which I shall propound should not only be true, but should also be presented to men's minds, how strangely soever preoccupied and obstructed, in a manner not harsh or unpleasant. X The subtlety of nature is greater many times over than the subtlety of the senses and understanding; so that all those specious meditations, speculations, and glosses in which men indulge are quite from the purpose, only there is no one by to observe it. With regard to our presumption, we allow that if we were to assume a power of drawing a more perfect straight line or circle than any one else, by superior steadiness of hand or acuteness of eye, it would lead to a comparison of talent; but if one merely assert that he can draw a more perfect line or circle with a ruler or compasses, than another can by his unassisted hand or eye, he surely cannot be said to boast of much. Bacon's theory of matter is thus closely related to his speculative philosophy: The distinction between tangible and pneumatic matter is the hinge on which the entire speculative system turns. And there is yet a third class, consisting of those who out of faith and veneration mix their philosophy with theology and traditions; among whom the vanity of some has gone so far aside as to seek the origin of sciences among spirits and genii. The foundations of experience our sole resource have hitherto failed completely or have been very weak; nor has a store and a collection of particular facts capable of informing the mind or in any way satisfactory, been either sought after or amassed.
The human mind is often so awkward and ill regulated in the career of invention, that it is at first diffident, and then despises itself. There remains but mere experience, which, when it offers itself, is called chance; when it is sought after, experiment. This great work remained a fragment, since Bacon was only able to finish parts of the planned outline. But we can little wonder that the sciences grow not when separated from their roots. After that, if any new particulars and examples repugnant to their dogmas were mooted and adduced, either they subtly molded them into their system by distinctions or explanations of their rules, or else coarsely got rid of them by exceptions; while to such particulars as were not repugnant they labored to assign causes in conformity with those of their principles. Francis Bacon: Theory of Induction, Novum Organum, Theory of the 4 Idols of the Mind. But the true method of experience, on the contrary, first lights the candle, and then by means of the candle shows the way; commencing as it does with experience duly ordered and digested, not bungling or erratic, and from it educing axioms, and from established axioms again new experiments; even as it was not without order and method that the divine word operated on the created mass.
Bacon's speculative cosmology and matter theory had been planned to constitute Part 5 of Instauratio Magna. So also the letters of the alphabet in themselves and apart have no use or meaning, yet they are the subject matter for the composition and apparatus of all discourse. In sciences founded on opinions and dogmas, it is right to make use of anticipations and logic, if you wish to force assent rather than things. Moreover, this road has an issue in the open ground and not far off; the other has no issue at all, but endless entanglement. Those who become practically versed in nature, are the mechanic, the mathematician, the physician, the alchymist, and the magician; but all as matters now stand with faint efforts and meagre success.
Here, too, we should close the demolishing branch of our Instauration, which is comprised in three confutations. And in like manner tin, etc. Further inquiry, however, must be made into this also. It will be time to treat of these when we come to the latent processes and latent configurations, and the discovery of them, as they are found in what are called substances or natures concrete. All bodies, whether solid or liquid, whether dense or rare as the air itself is , held for a time near the fire. For however the discovery of gunpowder, of silk, of the magnet, of sugar, of paper, or the like, may seem to depend on certain properties of things themselves and nature, there is at any rate nothing in the art of printing which is not plain and obvious. As a result, the document itself was designed very intentionally with precise instructions concerning how one might remove thoughts and assumptions that would mar a scientific outcome, while simultaneously guiding the observer into the best methods for gathering facts and data.