Chapter 3 outline on: The Canons of Empirical Methods

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1.) The Canon of Selection

Bernard Lonergan refers to two types of data: the data of sense, and the data of consciousness. He feels that the data of consciousness, or one's experience of the working of one's own mind be a part of one's research and be made available to the sense through reading and personal experience. The Canon of Selection is a set of general, testable principles that explains a range of observed phenomenon to be scientific. In order for a selection to be scientific, one has to see if it allows a prediction that is testable. For example, If my theory is that all polar bears are white because evolution has helped them evolve to blend in with the artic surroundings, then I can test that theory by going out and observing polar bears and viewing their colors, to see whether each bear is white or not.

The Canon of Selection is the process whereby one selects out favorable evidence, while ignoring unfavorable evidence.

1.1) What are Sensible Data?

Human knowing is that of reasoning and weighing the evidence. As supplied by sensible data the evidence is only material, as constructed by direct understanding and then by reflective understanding it is formal, but only as the integration of experience, imagination, understanding and conceptualization in function of agent intellect's intention of being, of the desire to know reality, does it become actual, the dialectical interplay of sense memory, imagination, insight, definition, critical reflection and judgment, the moving object of reflective understanding. This is the same process that Lonergan uses in determining sensible data, being also the same as "the desire to know".

This is data that one has observed and collected information from your observation such as from surveys, field observation, personal experience and so on.

2.) The Canon...