This painting by Raphael was long used as the logo of the Praxeme Institute. It was chosen, of course, for the reference to Ancient Greece and because it evokes the patronage of some of the most brilliant minds of humanity. But we can also find in it a magnificent symbol of the methodology.
In the center, Raphael has positioned Plato, who has been given Leonardo de Vinci’s features and Aristotle who, so it is said, has borrowed Michelangelo’s face. Plato is pointing his index finger towards the sky, revealing thus the source of truth that resides in the ethereal sky of ideas. Aristotle, on the contrary, his hand outstretched towards the floor, indicates that the truth is to be found from facts that have been observed, analyzed and sorted. We know today that no science, no body of knowledge would know how to constitute itself without input from both approaches. The same is true of the methodology:
- on the one hand, it seeks in the theory the fundamentals on which it can safely build itself (contemplation, in Greek)
- on the other hand, it continually seeks the confrontation between the facts and what happens in practice (the action).