12/15/2018

Summary of "Of Studies" by Francis Bacon.



The use of reading:
Studies are a source of delight in one's leasure time and solitude. They also have an ornamental value: one get material to granish one’s conversation with. Studies also help to develop one's ability to judge and handle one’s affair with ease and success. It is the learned man who can be expected to formulate general plans and policies, and manage the business in it's over all aspect.

Abuses of Study:
It is a sign of laziness to spend too much time on studies. To use too much of what one studies in one's conversation (to decorate one’s speech) is a sign of pedantry or vain display of learning. To let's one's judgement depend on the rules from a book shows the eccentricity of a scholar.

Studies and practical experience compliment each other:
Studies help a man to overcome the deficiencies that he has by nature, and practical experience helps to add value to studies. Together they perfect a man's personality. By themselves they are imperfect. Natural talents are moulded into proper shape by studies, and studies which gave vague and generalised guidance are put to specific use by experience.
Cunning man look down upon studies as unless. Simple man are awed and look with wonder at studies. It is the wise man who uses studies in practical life.

The Right Attitude towards Reading:
A book should not be ready merely in order to oppose and refute what is said in it, i.e. one should not approach a book with the idea of criticising and contradicting it's arguments. Nor should one accept everything that is  says passively. One should also not read a book with the sole intention of getting material for one's conversation.
One should read a book so that one can think carefully about what it says and then judge it's value.
Some books are to be read in parts only. Others are to be read through hastily. Only a few are to be read carefully and assimilated.
In the case of some books, one can ask other men who give the summary. But this method should be adopted only in the case of books which are not of great importance, as one cannot get pleasure out of the summaries of good books.

Modes of Study and Their Uses:
Reading fills the mind with new ideas and thoughts and develops the whole personality of a man.

Conversation makes a man alert and quick-witted, never at a loss for words.
Through taking down notes of what he reads , a man becomes systematic and praise in his talking and thinking.

Different values of different subjects:
Studies influence a man's character and mould his personality. Different kinds of books have different effects on the reader. History makes a man wise. Poetry develops man's imagination and ingenuity. Mathematics  is good for wandering mind. Logic and rhetoric develops a man's ability to debate and argue. Natural philosophy enables a man to go deep into a subject and Moral philosophy factors a serious attitude in a man.

Curative Power of Studies:
Studies cures mental defects just as the appropriate physical exercises cure defects of body. Bowling is good for kidneys: shooting is good for the lungs and walking is good for the digestion. Similarly, the study of mathematics is good for wandering minds. If a man suffers from a confusion of thought he should take up study of clarify and clinch his arguments, should read law cases, where precedents are used at every step. Thus every mental defects has a suitable remedy in studies.

No comments:

Post a Comment