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226. EXTRACTS SHOWING THE USE
TERM METHOD. 1. From Hedge's Logick, ed. 1854, pp. 149– 150.
Method, in logick, is a proper classification and arrangement of our thoughts on any subject, either to facilitate the discovery of new truths, or to assist us in communicating to others truths already known ; or, lastly, to enable us to preserve for future use the knowledge, which we have acquired. The disposition best adapted to the investigation of truth is the analytick method; which is therefore denominated the method of invention; and that which is best suited to the communication of knowledge, is the synthetick method, which for this reason has been called the method of instruction, In both of these methods, ideas are arranged in such order, as to exhibit their mutual connexions and relations.
2. From Coppée's Elements of Logrc, ed. 1860,
Method is the order and arrangement of facts to produce a certain result ; to establish new truth, to investigate old, and to explain and teach both. It is derived from the Greek meO’adov; which denotes the way through which we arrive at a certain result.
Whatever steps are taken to make knowledge profitable, to reduce theory to practice, and to give clear and intelligible ideas of science, constitute Method. The extension of the term Method, it is evident, will differ according to the subject to which it is applied.
The methods of investigation differ slightly for the different kinds of science, but may generally be classified under two heads, Analysis and Synthesis, of which the former is generally used in the private investigation of truth, and the latter for the purposes of instruction. We speak of the Method of a single science, or a Method which is applied to all—as in that which leads to the Classification of the sciences. In either investigation the division of Method into Analysis and Synthesis, is a just one, as both are used in either process.
3. From Day's Elements of Logic, ed. 1868, pp. 132–133.
“Method in general is the regulated procedure towards a certain end ; that is, a process governed by rules, which guide us by the shortest way straight towards a certain point, and guard us against devious aberrations. Now the end of Thought is Truth, Knowledge, Science-expressions which may here be considered as convertible. Science, therefore, may be regarded as the perfection of thought, and to the accomplishment of this perfection the Methodology of Logic must be accommodated and be conducive."
But while Science, thus, is the proper end of all Thought, and Logical Method "must have reference to Thought as its one end, it is still to be regarded only as the immediate end, which may, itself, be modified and controlled by still higher ends. In fact, Science or Truth may have its end either in itself—in the True, or in the Beautiful, or in the Right and Good ; and the Method of Thought will vary in some respects with this specific remoter end. Still further, the Method of Thought will vary with the more specific ends under each of these higher governing ends. We may deal with Thought for the purpose of acquiring knowledge, or for the purpose of communicating knowledge ; and the Method requisite for the Investigation of Truth will so far vary from the Method requisite for the Communication of Truth.
In like manner the Method of Thought, as governed by the higher end of guiding to the Beautiful, will vary specifically, as the particular end is the Contemplation or the Creation of the Beautiful.
So, too, we have a specific variation in the Method of Thought, where the governing idea is the Right or the Good, according as Subjective or Objective Rectitude or Goodness is the particular end.
It is sufficient to point out here these modifications of Logical Method in respect to these several general ends in thinking. The full, detailed consideration of them belongs either to modified Logic or to Applied or Special Logic.