By John Stuart Mill
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Extra resources for A System of Logic Ratiocinative and Inductive, Part I (The Collected Works of John Stuart Mill - Volume 07)
The latter he considered himself to be formulating explicitly for the first time. The question as to how these rules of art can be viewed as grounded in the science of valid thinking must be broughtunder the larger question as to how rules of art in general are grounded in science. For Mill, the way in which they are grounded is universallythe same for all arts in which there are rules. He distinguishes two kinds of practical reasoning. One is typified in the reasoning of a judge, the other in that of a legislator.
To explain a particular fact is, for Mill, to show that the way in which it came about is an instance of a causal law. The fact is explained when its mode of production is deduced from a law or laws. 2). Viewed in terms of the directional function for inference which Mill assigns to major premises in deductions, this means that scientific explanation consists not in dispelling the mysteries of nature, but in bringing the formulae for inferring particulars from particulars under the fewest and most general formulae for inferring.
The truth is, that this great generalization is itself founded on prior generalizations. The obscurer laws of nature were discovered by means of it, but the more obvious ones must have been understood and assented to as general truths before it was ever heard of .... In what sense, then, can a principle, which is so far from being our earliest induction, be regarded as our warrant for all the others? In the only sense, in which . . the general propositions which we place at the head of our reasonings when we throw them into syllogisms, ever really contribute to their validity.
A System of Logic Ratiocinative and Inductive, Part I (The Collected Works of John Stuart Mill - Volume 07) by John Stuart Mill