Eye doctors know best. That’s what we’re taught. If there were a natural treatment for myopia, or other conditions, eye doctors would know about it and be offering it to everyone.
Would they? What happens when there’s a new discovery that upsets the current thinking that the experts were trained in?
Table of Contents
What Happened to a Sociologist
Here’s the way that new discoveries are often taken:
The first thing they try to do is get rid of it. This is often the case where new information emerges that contradicts established theories. It’s a strange phenomenon in science, because we like to think of scientists as rational and reasonable people. But the fact is that when you get very committed to a particular idea I think you start to connect your own personality to it, and any attack on that idea becomes an existential attack on you yourself. Again and again, what we see is the new facts being dismissed because they don’t fit the existing theory, when in fact what we should be doing is modifying the existing theory to explain the newly discovered facts. This is a problem in the whole history of science.Graham Hancock, somewhere in a Joe Rogan podcast – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDejwCGdUV8
Graham Hancock is a British sociologist and author of many books including Fingerprints of the Gods, which I have not read myself but which is a bestseller in the categories of Aztec, Mayan, and Ancient Egyptian History on Amazon. He investigates anomalies that other historians would rather ignore because they don’t fit the narrative. (Leave me a comment below if you’ve read it!)
TED removed Graham Hancock’s TED talk from their distribution channels, on the advice of their “science board.”
Of course, it doesn’t mean that all of his conclusions are right. What it does mean is he’s nearly the only person with his level of knowledge about the subject who is willing to look at information that conflicts with the accepted narrative of history and consider whether a huge part of the narrative could be wrong.
Bates described the same problem in 1920 when his professional peers dismissed his discoveries about improving vision:
The fact is that, except in rare cases, man is not a reasoning being. He is dominated by authority, and when the facts are not in accord with the view imposed by authority, so much the worse for the facts.https://www.iblindness.org/ebooks/perfect-sight-without-glasses/ch32/
Faced with criticism from his peers, Bates presented his findings to Dr. Roosa (I found him on Wikipedia!), the faculty president at the New York Post-Graduate Medical School where Bates worked as instructor of ophthalmology for several years.
This method did not appeal to him, however. He repeated that it was impossible to cure myopia, and to prove that it was impossible he expelled me from the Post Graduate, even the privilege of resignation being denied to me.https://www.iblindness.org/ebooks/perfect-sight-without-glasses/ch32/
The scientific institutions control who is allowed to hold positions of authority or influence. If you suggest ideas – or show evidence – that step on the wrong toes, you’re out. The truth does not win out, not internally. You have to work outside the system if you really want to explore.
Hey, this is nothing new. Dogma has taken hold of people throughout history. One institution loses favor, only to give way to another one. But this time we have it right! Yeah, right.
Another Rebellious Scientist: Rupert Sheldrake
They did the same with Rupert Sheldrake, a biochemist who gave a powerful talk on the ten dogmas of science that also he goes over in his book, Science Set Free.
Among the dogmas of science he describes are the ideas that nature is mechanical and without purpose, all matter is unconscious, and all medicine that works is mechanical in nature.
I have a problem with these ideas. That isn’t how I view the world or live in it on a daily basis.
Accepted Science and Your Vision
The worldview of the scientific community tells you that your allowable choices for myopia are glasses or laser surgery. They love glasses, in the spirit of the idea that the human body is merely a machine that can be extended. Laser surgery, similarly, treats the eyes as a machine that can be altered, not living tissue. They ignore the side effects.
Should you feel extra rebellious, you’ll explore eye exercises, with the idea that maybe there’s a muscle in your eye that needs exercising to become stronger or better conditioned. Or you’ll try every eye supplement you can find. They won’t work. Those kinds of solutions are stuck firmly in the same mechanistic worldview as glasses but with less knowledge about the mechanics supposedly involved. A little explanation from your eye doctor will clear that right up and reign you back in.
That’s why the first thing I try to introduce people to is another way of looking at things.
What other way could there be?
Well, you are taught that your quality of vision is the inevitable result of a series of chain reactions involving chemicals, genes, or the structure of your eyes. All mechanics. Maybe you can influence things to change in some ways, but it’s all very complex, and for the most part your vision will stay the same, and you better get used to it. Or if it does change, there’s not much you can do about it anyway. That’s the view you’re taught.
Here’s how I see it: You are more powerful than you give yourself credit for. You have a greater ability to make decisions about your quality of vision than you think is possible. Rupert mentions that science can’t deal with the fact that we are conscious.
When you embrace the fact that you are not a robot but a conscious being with an immense amount of power, you no longer have to abdicate responsibility for your vision to the idea that “it just happened this way.” You have control over it. Your thoughts and emotions have real effects. Your drive and intentions matter.
A Cartoonist Tells You How to Succeed at (Almost) Anything
A few days ago, Scott Adams, the maker of the popular Dilbert comic strip and author of How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big, one of my favorite books I read last year, credited the value of affirmations in a few major life accomplishments that anyone would have thought were almost impossible:
- Be a best-selling author
- Be a famous syndicated cartoonist
- Regain the ability to speak clearly when he had an “incurable” voice problem
Also, he’s a 61 year old who has a beautiful long-term girlfriend half his age. He admits that all of this is extremely unlikely and that he appears to be the luckiest person in the world. He believes he is tapped into the controls of reality in a way that very few people are.
One thing he did not do was apply his methods to improving his vision. He’s a guy who, despite being such a success in various avenues, has a mechanistic view of life (“Humans are nothing but moist robots”) that doesn’t put importance in emotional energy or credit oneself the power of self-healing (he fixed the aforementioned voice problem with a surgery and exercises, not with any kind of mental change).
Still, I like his systematic approach to life, involving affirmations, building skills, and optimistically keeping an eye out for opportunities.
He thinks what his approach does is dramatically increases your odds for success, but in my view it’s about how his approach gets you to focus emotionally.
One More: Gregg Braden
Like Graham Hancock, Gregg Braden has studied ancient cultures and hidden pieces of human history. His interest is more in lost knowledge of human potential, so of course he’s right up my alley.
One thing he focuses on is the power of emotions and intention in creating a force that alters reality. This is the kind of thing that I believe Scott Adams and other extraordinarily successful people do without necessarily realizing what they are doing. They do it instinctively.
See my video on Gregg Braden where I talk about emotional energy’s powerful role in improving your vision.
It doesn’t matter that scientific institutions are slow to change. You have the internet now. Those institutions are no longer the gatekeepers. They act like they are, but you don’t have to believe it. They are being left behind as people are accomplishing things like improving vision without their help.
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Interesting blogpost and comments. I have some similar views to Darrel about Sheldrake. His website has a couple of interesting articles, one of them Richard Dawkins Pays A Visit (or something like that). The other is about the Guerrilla Skeptics and how they police Wikipedia for the merest hint of heresy. Actually, I was told that the GSs deny targeting Sheldrake’s Wiki entry; I can well believe it because I think Wiki is self-censoring as it reflects received opinion, especially as regards ‘pseudo-science’. There were references on Iblindness in the past to the discouraging Wiki entry on Bates. Sheldrake’s TED talk was famously banned. There is a growing campaign against ‘pseudo science’ and yet obviously real pseudo science like ADHD and dyslexia are supported.
Sheldrake’s book is wonderful. There is a fascinating section about what vision is where he argues that it seems to be something active rather than passive (the latter is what we are taught). I have wondered if this ties into the importance of attention when seeing. The other thing is this and it might be similar to Darrel’s point (in his excellent posts) about laws. Sheldrake’s theory is morphic resonance and he illustrates it with crystals, lab rats and tits: the latter two learnt behaviour that mysteriously spread while existing versions of crystals have proved difficult and ultimately impossible to grow once newer ‘versions’ appeared, in scattered locations across the world. I wonder if there is a connection with the epidemic in myopia and the difficulty experience by those trying to cure it. I have long thought this and perhaps when some begin to succeed it will become easier for the rest.
As for scientific dogmatism I fully agree. As it happens I am just finishing a book by an Italian author about Darwinism. His basic argument is that science adapted to the political environment (then Malthus’s ideas about population) rather than the other way round. Darwin himself accepted the inheritance of acquired characteristics (Lamarck is now derided) and saw the utter lack of fossil evidence for gradual evolution as an enormous problem for his theory. The author refers to Kuhn and his paradigms, but in the case of the fossil record this was not new evidence but there from the beginning. Barely a week goes by for me without further evidence of the extraordinary gap between the official story (whatever it may be) and the evidence.
While I am here I may as well say that I am convinced that we are all living in a collective delusion. (I am not the only to think this. For example the late English writer Richard Webster believed this – his Sceptical Essays website is essential reading, the section on false accusations). David once wrote here (going back a good few years) that we are reluctant to abandon our bad habits because “you like them too much”. I have more than a suspicion that they also fall under the collective fantasy umbrella (it is a very wide one).
Finally, I did look at Greg Braden’s videos and I assume the one David links to here is the one he links to in his Method (I will check this later). I am afraid to say I did not find him that useful and I was probably missing the point. David also recommended The Nature Of Personal Reality but this strikes me as a very odd book and I have only read the opening chapters, although it makes much more sense if you think of ‘Seth’ being knowledge hidden in her own mind but otherwise inaccessible. I would be very interested in reading what David might have to say about this whole thing about beliefs in any future posts. (My big problem is remembering: keep attention, relaxation, searching for detail and everything else: when I get on top of some of them I realize I have been forgetting the others.)
Sean, thanks for taking the time to share all those thoughts! I can’t match the size of it in my reply…
Wikipedia is gamed pretty hard as far as anything controversial. It’s handy to find quick info on topics nobody is going to argue about, but as far as anything controversial or political it’s not trustworthy. So obviously as far as natural vision improvement it’s not pretty. I know there were one or more people who tried to keep iblindness.org and other sites as references in some Wikipedia articles, and Wikipedia actually used to be a lot more fair and unbiased than it is now. The editors paid by outside organizations are relentless and have all day.
I’ve heard a little about there being a group consciousness that people enter into, separate from genes. If so, I have to imagine that widespread myopia could be somewhat related to it.
The Gregg Braden video I linked to recently is a newer one. But probably has some similarities to the previous one.
Sean, thank you for your kind comments and I wish you well. Someone (can’t remember who) said that “on non-controversial subjects with which one just has a passing interest” Wikipedia may be all right. Otherwise we rely on it at our peril and if I am correct several US universities have banned their undergraduate students from referencing it in their assignments. Allo too often it seems that Wikipedia is the only source of info out there on something. Actually maybe not, it’s not that we are lazy but often due to time constraints we might just read the Wiki article rather than looking at other websites which might be a better option.
As regards a group consciousness Sheldrake has something to say about this In fact he seems to come into his element here. He refers to a book called The Psychic Side of Sports (Murphy,White) and states that team games might be an example. He also mentions the ice skaters Torvill and Dean who were so well connected to each other. Also musicians playing together , herds of animals, schools of fish, pack behaviour and so on seem to validate Sheldrake’s contention that we have extended minds reaching out beyond our bodies, not just located within our brains. I refer to Sheldrake’s The Sense of Being Stared At” book. I haven’t got his new book yet but I intend to at some point . Bates said myopia was contagious and he was obviously referring to mental influences. Corbett also said “Tension draws tension, relaxation begets relaxation” so group influences seem to have been considered a long time ago.
As regards Wikipedia on the Bates Method I remember a good few years ago it was much more supportive and friendly towards it and once there was a long list of supportive websites (including Imagination Blindness as it then was) with only one “Critical” (should have been “Hostile”) site, namely the Quackwatch one right at the very end.
As regards the “scientific vigilantes” who devoutly patrol the internet with plenty of time and resources to do so, it’s too bad they are wasting their energy. We might have less than they do but at least we know Bates was right.
“on non-controversial subjects with which one just has a passing interest”
Peter Hitchens thinks it is useful for knowing what other people think (he has had his own battles with Wikipedia and there are a couple of amusing posts on his blog). I go further than him in that it tells us what conventional wisdom is, indeed what the ‘collective fantasy’ demands we believe. My own formulation for Wiki’s uses is that it is all right if you want to know the number of steps in the Leaning Tower of Pisa or its weight in metric tonnes (my son was asked in primary school to find some information on the Tower) or how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall.
Wow, what a post! I don’t know where to begin to reply! I like Sheldrake, his view on reality is holistic and not materialistic and he views the universe as having memory and thinks that stars, crystals etc form easily now because of a kind of habit in nature transmitted over the eons. His remarkable views are way too complex to do justice in just a short post here so I won’t try. Let alone all the other authors David references. It seems to me that orthodox ophthalmology is basically Newtonian physics applied to mind and vision, treating us a soulless machines. So if we can’t see clearly and concave glasses ‘fix’ the problem, then it’s patently obvious that there was something wrong with the eyes, not any supposed unconscious mental issues. For the orthodoxy it’s a no- brainer. One obstacle for the Bates Method to overcome as Jonathan Barnes pointed out in his book (and he was a biology graduate) is that results usually take sometime to manifest and “require a good deal of application, even faith”. Many people will simply want the quick fix. However I think temporary instant improvement can be demonstrated in many people who will investigate the subject with an open mind. The orthodox will then ignore, deny or explain away these phenomena, but never successfully. Like how people feel better after vision improvement and know the experience to be true. Thanks David.
The “soulless machines” view seems so blind to me. The volume of problem-solving that the body has to do on a minute-by-minute basis dealing with stressors and unexpected issues every day isn’t possible without an intelligence at work figuring out how to best deal with everything in the short term and long term.
Anyway, glad you liked it!
I’d like to point out as well that when Sheldrake views the ‘laws’ of nature not as immutable laws at all but habits, he offers evidence that this may be so. For example the speed of light, records showed, seem to have been fluctuating over the decades, but the speed of light (or ‘c’) was (dogmatically) fixed by the scientific consensus some years ago and the scientific community will not reconsider the speed of light anymore since, we are told, the old measurements were inaccurate and now we have it finally sorted! Also Sheldrake points out that the idea of laws is a product of civilisation, primitive peoples don’t have laws, they have customs, more akin to habits, and all this leads me to a comparison with Bates Method principles that good vision, or bad vision (in healthy, normal eyes) is due to habit, not a static material ocular condition. Sheldrake states the natural habits at work in the universe appear like laws as they are deeply habitual and have been around a really long time, not unlike for example severe myopia which might to a casual inquirer appear static and unchangeable (like a law) especially if the person afflicted wears glasses all through waking hours. But its intransigence is habitual in origin. The more careful observer (like Bates was) might notice, if the myope took off his/her glasses for a while, that the bad vision was constantly changing, fluctuating within certain limits perhaps. Like the speed of light maybe. “Transmutations impossible to the camera” (Bates). Meaning that “we see largely with the mind and only partly with the eyes” (Bates again).
I hadn’t thought about the similarity with treating vision with glasses, but that’s a good point. It’s inconvenient to think that these things change or fluctuate over time.
Scientists are held in high regard by people so of course they’re going to be used for marketing. And since scientists need money too and often want a high-paying career, often they’re going to accept.
People act as if scientists are free curious people who just want to find and publish truth. But in reality scientists are often more like marketing people seeking to find half-truths, misleading facts, or even straight out lies that they can get away with in order to promote whatever makes the one paying them the most money.
Bates had to self-publish his book to get around the system. Fortunately, nowadays that’s a lot easier to do, particularly in digital format. Scientists and their inbred systems wouldn’t be so limiting except that there is a huge amount of censorship happening on the internet that has ramped up in the last few years. At first it was just some fringe people. Now everything that doesn’t fit the agenda or narrow mindset is censored.
Blind spots …
… is a term I use a lot these days when trying to come to terms with many of the established narratives floating about. Western-scientific dogma is just one (but a very good) example here. The way people ‘see’ and talk about themselves. The way institutions/systems/nations talk about themselves and others. All those narratives are utterly full of blind spots. And the more blind spots (i.e. things that must not be seen) there are, the more rigid (obviously) the view – and, importantly, the more aggressively that view has to be defended.
I realize this is a very(!) broad approach, but it has the benefit of being applicable universally 🙂 And it helps in making sense of – often contradictory – stories.
(I do apologize for the many blunt visual metaphors in the above – but I suppose there is a reason visual metaphors are so prevalent in our society. Probably because we think we ‘see’ so much.)
Thanks for a thought-provoking post, David. And apologies if I went off-topic.
Sounds on topic to me! But any random comments are welcome too.
The blind spots analogy sounds good.
Science was supposed to be about a never-ending process of inquiry. Now the scientific fields are more like different sects of a religion where everyone pretty much agrees on the same stuff and thinks in the same way. If you have other ideas, you get pushed out and your career is over.
It’s fine that people with similar beliefs group together, but what’s disturbing is more and more extreme attacks on people who think differently.
Yes, science was, as you say, supposed to be about a never-ending process of inquiry. But the foundation and framework for that process was very limited (often very outspokenly so) from the very beginning, with the express purpose of ‘understanding’ (i.e. putting into a hierarchical order, managing and using) nature and, I daresay, as a consequence, human nature.
Man-made tools and technology were the means – and the end.
Anything ‘natural’, anything not dependent on ‘experts’ and their devices , just runs completely counter to that.
The opposition is to be expected, really 🙂
I guess once they’ve got the textbooks published, that’s it, no opposing ideas are welcome!
This post is right on target. Our thoughts are our reality and we have the power to create all and anything we desire. I have read Fingerprints of the Gods, along with several of his other works. Good books that deserve serious consideration. Thank you for this insightful article!
Thanks for sharing! I have found myself listening to interviews of authors instead of reading their books. They often boil down their most important points in a long interview, and I can listen to it while driving or lying down to rest.
well if you think that way then you would happily watch the impossiball documentary!
I don’t know if you’re being facetious, but I’ve heard some Flat Earth arguments, and it’s not very convincing to me.
then you sufer from what you warn, how hypocritical!
David, you talk about the text books above. An interesting thing about the flat earth belief that I only recently became aware of his how recent it is. A Jeffrey Burton Russell wrote a book about it (which I have not read) called inventing the flat earth. Belief in a round globe goes back to the Greeks and persisted ever since. A deliberate myth was propagated (the school text books have been identified) that the Middle Ages was a time of superstition and ignorance with the intention of making our rational age look good in comparison. As it happens a similar thing happened to Voltaire. French writer Marion Sigaut has shown from the documentary evidence that he was one of the worst liars and scoundrels who ever walked the earth but his supporters created a legend surrounding him. In particular school text books in France pushed it. I am sure there are lots of similar cases. An interesting theory I only chanced upon last week, however, is that of Robert Sugenis, who argues for geocentrism. His view is that the universe rotates around a stationary Earth. He is not a scientist but his arguments are interesting and he has good layman’s grasp of the issues. Apparently even Einstein, among others, conceded that it was a mathematic possibility. (There is an excellent interview on Fatima TV on YT.) I suppose it is largely a matter of where the observer is standing. Sugenis argues that Einstein came up with his first theory of relativity to rebut the Michelson-Morley experiment which showed that the Earth was not moving through space.
I’ve heard a little of those things. Curiosities with the Moon too. But how it’s laid out wouldn’t really affect anything in my life. I’m sure there’s more to discover. Last year researchers used new technology to discover a huge Mayan city buried in the jungle that would have housed millions of people. Time to rewrite the history again!
What a great post! Thanks, David!
Thanks for the feedback!