The first and fundamental presumption of Formal Inquiry is the accepted convention, the unstated conviction, of the presence of an inquiring Subject ‘Independent and Separate’ from the investigated Object.
Every known ‘First Principle’, in Philosophy, in Logic, in Language, in Science, in Art, takes life atop this platform.
It is meaningless to talk of ‘Inquiry’ if the Subject is conjoined with the Object of Inquiry. But then, the word ‘Meaning’ itself is predicated on the presence of a ‘Me’.
[Nature rebels at zero correlations; try and find one. But anoint yourself ‘Independent’ and you’ll be granted this exclusive lie. There is no such state as ‘partially independent’. I hear this thrown around a lot. The correlation is either Zero or Non-Zero.]
We can spend decades testing an academic assumption that underpins a trite theory. But skip out on testing this first presumption that precedes the posit of Theory itself.