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This compilation contains 24 articles by Dr. Bates, published in medical journals and other periodicals between 1886 and 1923. He is the pioneer of the Bates method of vision improvement, a method based not on eye exercises but on relearning correct use of the eyes. The basic premise of the Bates method is that most vision problems are caused by mental strain and abnormal tension in the eyes, and can be eliminated by techniques focusing on re-establishing relaxed use of the eyes and mind. As Dr. Bates graduated medical school, he was not convinced of the truth of the conventional theories regarding myopia. After being punished in 1891 for his claims in curing myopia in medical students, he practiced medicine for several years and was well-respected by his peers. He held positions in hospitals and as a lecturer at the New York Postgraduate Medical School. He invented astigmatic keratotomy, an operation still used to this day. Before long, however, he left his positions and began conducting research that eventually led him to develop methods to cure a wide variety of eye disorders by “treatment without glasses”.
In the articles contained in this collection, you’ll see the process of Dr. Bates turning away from conventional ophthalmology and coming up with new methods of treating vision problems based on the principles he was discovering. At first, it was just “functional” myopia, but after several years he discovered that his methods were applicable to all cases of myopia, and even other conditions from hyperopia (farsightedness) to strabismus to even diseases of the eye.
Note that prior to 1913, his articles still defer to the accepted opinions regarding the eye, as he hasn’t yet realized the full significance of what he was discovering. By 1913 he began publishing articles that showed a great leap in understanding of the application and scope of the principles he discovered, and these later articles represent what is now known as the Bates method. Click
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