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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: Experimental Method

DEFINITIONS

Experimental Method:

Derived from the practices of medieval alchemists, the experimental method is at the heart of Western science. It involves these steps:

  1. Through observation and research, an educated guess or hypothesis is made concerning the cause and action of the observation.
  2. The hypothesis is tested via more observation and the use of controlled experiments to determine its accurateness. If the hypothesis does not explain all of the observations, it needs to be changed. When the final hypothesis explains all data, the method moves to the next stage.
  3. The researcher calls on other experimenters to duplicate his or her work. Experiments to prove or disprove a hypothesis are not considered valid unless everything can be successfully reproduced. If others cannot duplicate the research, the original experimenters may return to the beginning and start over or abandon this completely. However, if the research is replicated and other researchers agree with the hypothesis, that hypothesis may be developed into a theory.
  4. Theories should be able to predict other observations and behaviors. If experiments by different people show that the theory is correct, and if the theory accurately predicts the observation and behavior of something based on discovery within the theory, that theory becomes a scientific law—until superseded by another theory that better explains all observations.

Thus, a theory in science does not mean one explanation out of many. Rather, it means the best and most complete explanation of all known data.

Also known as the "scientific method."




ARTICLES

Visualization Beyond the Body
In traditional cultures the shaman functions as healer and seer. His role is to mediate between the material world and the spiritual world. When someone requests a healing, the shaman visualizes his soul traveling through other realms of existence ...
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What is the Golden Dawn
The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn is an initiatory magical group that was founded in London in 1888. It is a society that is dedicated to philosophical, spiritual, and psychic evolution. The history lecture of the Order states that, "The Order ...
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Samhain Ritual
Setup Items for this ritual include: Two white candles and four black candles; Four small sprigs of bittersweet; One branch of bittersweet; Strands of black, white and red yarn cut to twelve-inch lengths placed in a basket on the altar; Pomegranate ...
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Santeria
Santería is an Afro-Caribbean religion that comes to us from Cuba and to this day it is practiced worldwide. Its original form, called Ifa, is an ancient Yoruba religion that comes from West-Africa and is declared by UNESCO as one of the ...
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Stimulating the Brow Chakra Through Sound
Introduction: In the article on Tratak we’ve already mentioned the value of stimulating the brow chakra. A very powerful adjunct to the method of physically feeling subtle sensations in the brow area is the use of voice vibrations focused ...
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Taking the Door Without A Key
Door Without a Key is an expression used by Dion Fortune in Moon Magic, London, Aquarian Press, 1956, page 91: “I will tell you what I did, putting all my cards on the table, for it shows how we used the Door Without a Key to escape the Lord ...
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The Dynamic Way to Success
You have heard of—maybe even used—the technique called "positive thinking." That technique is based on creative visualization, which is an easy, effective method for tapping into the innate power of the mind. Some people apply visualization without ...
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The Sacred Circle Tarot
Summary: The Sacred Circle Tarot features brilliant, realistic art and a totally Celtic Pagan orientation. Perfect for art collectors, Pagans, and people who already have experience with Tarot, its uniqueness is its high point and its challenge, as ...
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Review of the Wiccan Cards
Summary: The Wiccan Cards invite the user’s intuition and imagination into each quiet image. Each card is a doorway leading to worlds waiting to be explored. By going through these charming and deceptively simple portals, seekers can find answers ...
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Planets
The planets (including the Sun and Moon) are the actors in the astrological drama. They represent ten general categories of energy – ten sub-personalities – that reflect facets of your personality and ways that you function in the world. Each planet ...
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Review of the Wicca Oracle Cards
Summary: The Wicca Oracle Cards invite the user's intuition and imagination into each quiet image. Each card is a doorway leading to worlds waiting to be explored. By going through these charming and deceptively simple portals, seekers can find ...
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My new book, Haunted Plantations of The South, has just hit the bookshelves. In the book, I share brief histories and ghost stories of nearly one hundred separate plantations throughout eight southern states. Some of the plantations are successful bed and breakfasts, while others have unfortunately been all but forgotten. However, with each story... read this article
Traditional Lughnasadh with a Modern Twist
5 Gemstones to Help You Balance the Masculine Within
The Moon in Midlife
5 Ways Dreams Can Help at the End of Life (And How You Can Help Your Dreams Now)
The Natural Psychic... It's Time

Most recent posts:
Respect Is a Necessity When Hunting Ghosts
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Richard Southall, author of How to Be a Ghost Hunter, Haunted Route 66, and the new Haunted Plantations...

Llewellyn Titles Win 2015 COVR Awards
The annual COVR (Coalition of Visionary Retailers) awards were announced this weekend at INATS in Denver. Two Llewellyn titles won 2015 COVR...

Your Tarot Ethics
My friend Michael thought having me write about tarot ethics would be interesting. I think I might disappoint him because I don’t have a set of tarot...




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