William Horatio Bates was an American ophthalmologist who earned great fame and recognition during his time for his novel way of improving eyesight naturally. He was born on 23rd December, 1860 and died on 10th July, 1931. He lectured extensively and developed a method now known as the Bates method through the help of which anyone may remove their eyesight problem. His theory states that our eyes do not focus properly by changing the power of the lens, but by elongating the eyeball. He wrote a book namely ‘Perfect Sight without Glasses’ and also launched a magazine known as ‘Better Eyesight Magazine”. In his theory he emphasized the need for reducing the strain that your eyes experiences when trying to focus on an object. He states that it is this effort that the eyes undergo while performing any work or while thinking that is the real reason behind all vision problems. He therefore brought out a step by step method that can lead to a better relaxation of the eyes.
Natural Methods of Enhancing Vision
The basic principle underlined in Dr. Bates techniques is to pave way for the total relaxation of the eyes by relieving the eyes of their strain while trying to focus on a task or thought. In this method it is usually seen that your eyes strain considerably as they do not perceive objects or a piece of work consciously. In other words, most people take it for granted about the colors they see, light, and darkness without the depth in perception. In fact, they just skim over these without the need for experiencing them fully. They do not enjoy as our ancestors used to do and therefore over a period of time we have forgotten these natural uses of our vision.
In his method Bates explains how to train your eyes in such a way that you may be able to see each object, shapes, colors, textures and movements of one or more of these in their real depths. This again means the establishment of the long forgone natural interaction between the eye and the mind. He says that if our minds are closed then they become busy with other things and when all the visual information has nowhere else to go it makes the eyes strain.
He therefore suggests some of the techniques that are the outcome of his extensive study and research. These are the Palming technique, Sunning technique, Swings technique, Sways technique and Color Days technique.
Glimpses of Bates Techniques
The first one Palming is an easy yet quite effective technique to start with. In this method you simply cover your eyes with your palms without putting pressure on your eyeballs. The palm all the while tries to block out as much light as possible and for this reason many people do it in a dark room. It is recommended that you do this daily and for a week or as long as you wish to do.
The next method is sunning and is slightly more difficult than Palming yet very effective to improve eyesight naturally where the source of light is preferably the sunlight or may be light from the lamp. You would need to adjust your eyes even though the eyes are closed throughout. This is because if you experience any discomfort then it means that you are too close to the light. With the right distance from the light you will begin to experience pleasing warmth all over your face.
The third method is the Swings which shows you how to relax your eyes even while observing the things in your surroundings. There are different types of Swings enumerated in Bates books and these are the Long Swing, Head Swing, The Prayer Swing, Optical Swing and The Drifting Swing. In the Long Swing you stand with a stick or a pointer and then rock from side to side as if swaying while your eyes move with the sway. In the Head Swing you need to let your eyes rest while need not adjust with the movement of your head. In the Prayer Swing your eyes are shut you need to stand in prayer while trying to register the presence of your hands.
The Optical Swing is like tracing a line while the Drifting Swing is to move your eyes and mind continuously from one object to another.
In the Sways technique you observe the surroundings around you with gentle breathing and listening while the Color Days are marked for observing a particular color for one day and so on.
According to Bates practicing these techniques over a period of time would improve anyone’s vision.
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