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notes on looking at details and changing
lordofthesun Wrote:I don't want to continue doing things bad, so it's important to clear some things, I am still a mess with this.

Well, the method could be summarized as the follow:

-Face the chart/object.
-Start to think about it as scattered details, there is no such thing as blur.
-Perceive small details in and around the letter/object.
-Keep imagining/perceiving small dots/points of details.
-Look at a small detail (?). Keep perceiving small and imagining even small pieces (?).

while more are scattered the details, the better?
There is the mess, you first said that you should look at a single small detail and focus on it, but later you said that you haven't to focus on no particular detail. Just perceive as everything is made of pure details. Please correct me.

Thank you.

Good job with the long moment of clear vision you mentioned in your other post!

So as far as your question, either way you do it, you don't stay on one point only. The shifts are just very small as you search for smaller details. But the last several days I've reconsidered this and read some parts of Bates's book again (for the 50th or some odd time...). I see now that the problem with this is people with poor vision aren't in the habit of shifting their attention a short enough distance on a regular basis, so they don't necessarily automatically start doing so in the process of searching for details. They mainly only do larger shifts, and if they start to do smaller ones it's going to soon feel "wrong" because it isn't what they're used to. So they have to practice it, but in a certain way. The chapter "Shifting and Swinging" has some good stuff on this. I see how I need to incorporate it into the article. Basically it's a matter of adding the extra step of shifting back and forth between the left and right edges of an object, or any other points you can locate a short distance apart. And doing so with as short a distance as you're capable of at the moment.

It makes sense as part of the normal process of seeing for people with normal vision, so it passes the common sense test. What ever they look at, it helps to pick a couple of points a very short distance apart and look back and forth between them... while still continuing to be on the hunt for any details, breathing and blinking.

Here's a good piece from that chapter. I find that what he says about shorter and longer shifts seems to be true.

Quote: In order to see the previous point of fixation worse, the eye with imperfect sight has to look farther away from it than does the eye with normal sight. If it shifts only a quarter of an inch, for instance, it may see the previous point of fixation as well as or better than before; and instead of being rested by such a shift, its strain will be increased, there will be no swing, and the vision will be lowered. At a couple of inches it may be able to let go of the first point; and if neither point is held more than a fraction of a second, it will be rested by such a shift and the illusion of swinging may be produced. The shorter the shift the greater the benefit; but even a very long shift—as much as three feet or more—is a help to those who cannot accomplish a shorter one. When the patient is capable of a short shift, on the contrary, the long shift lowers the vision. The swing is an evidence that the shifting is being done properly, and when it occurs the vision is always improved. It is possible to shift without improvement; but it is impossible to produce the illusion of a swing without improvement, and when this can be done with a long shift, the movement can gradually be shortened until the patient can shift from the top to the bottom of the smallest letter, on the Snellen test card or elsewhere, and maintain the swing. Later he may become able to be conscious of the swinging of the letters without conscious shifting.

As always, it's good to determine whether there's anything wrong with what Bates wrote. Is anyone able to get the illusion of the swing like this without their vision being improved?

Dave
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
Very shortly after I start looking at the chart, I am "conscious of the swinging of the letters without conscious shifting", the Universal Swing, that slight bouncing of the letters. However this can happen even if the letters are still blurry. It doesn't go away as I consciously do small shifts to make the letters clearer, although it may decrease a bit in amplitude from a bounce to a vibrate. When I first started looking at the chart a few years ago, there was no Universal Swing, and when it appeared I tried to make it stop! Then I realized what it was and was thrilled (my eyes are doing something right!), and now I see it all the time. I'm still surprised that it's not accompanied by more clarity, although it is very relaxing.
Dave,
I think you describe the component of how to search for details in a dynamically relaxed way, the effortless component.
This is (I guess) what people really must be aware of in order to succeed in improving their vision, and many have missed it (up to now), including me.
I my self was able to search for details in a much more relaxed way after I followed your advice.
I have known (for a long time) that there was an effortless component missing, that it existed and wondered what the effortless component was,
but you gave the answer, really happy for this.
I think it was worth that you reread that Bates book 50 times to find it Smile
Thanks alot, really thankful !
I tried the search for details method the whole day today, and I was really relaxed during the whole day in my eyes, during the whole day I got much better eyesight than I normally have, the more I shifted effortlessly the better vision I got, I felt like a hawk seeing details at far distance Big Grin, pretty cool ha ha, and it was really relaxing feeling to search for details at far distance, but the problem was that I often see double when I search for details :-\ . I got one really clear flash of really normal eyesight, it kept my mood up, this flash lasted for a few minutes.

I think I also have succeded in my goal to combine the peripheral awareness with the searching for details, actually the searching for details includes some peripheral awareness, else you cannot shift effortlessly, so everything becomes merged into oneness, and I think it is why I am so relaxed in my eyes, visual meditation, so coool, because vision is holographic.

Also if you shift short enough distances that enables you to follow round 3D edges, this also is possible with the search for details method.
hammer, sounds good... Double vision technically isn't a good thing of course, but in the context of this process it can be a good sign, because it's a step away from seeing just rough blur. You may be able to force the double image to go away quickly by doing something with your eyes, but that's a step backwards because it results in blur, even if it's a blur that looks "better" in a way because there's only one of it.

Bates noted how temporarily improving the vision by this kind of effort can partially succeed but will in the long term only result in worse and worse vision. He drew a parallel about how this is similar to how forcing facts into kids' minds in school can kind of work, but you hurt their natural impulse towards learning until they aren't very good at it. It's the same with forcing the eyes to focus, either by effort to focus or simulating focus with glasses, until the natural seeing process is damaged and has to be rebuilt.

Luckily the visual system will eventually respond very favorably when you do the right things, and it can really get itself running well relatively quickly, if just temporarily at first, and that's why people get such feelings of relaxation and other sensations. But trying to get to that point just by relaxing, or stopping strain, isn't going to cut it because relaxing doesn't help rebuild the process that has been damaged over years. But relaxation does have its place, because it's still important to stop the habit of strain that had some hand in the onset of the problem and is still causing problems. I hope that came out right.

Dave
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
The point about small distance shifts may be one more missing piece of the puzzle for me. I'll try to explain...

I have noticed that one thing that helps me is to practice looking at a single small detail and avoiding the natural habit of my eyes to just skip around, jump to see other stuff all over. Now I know that it sounds like the natural movement is the correct thing and what I describe as practicing sounds like staring - but somehow it feels to me like it's the opposite.
Letting the eyes jump all over is more of a strain and stare, because I believe they don't want to miss in anything so they grasp for everything more or less at the same time. On the other side, focusing more calmly on a single point and trying to stay with the focus on it for a longer time feels rather relaxing, results in clearer vision or detail recognition, and just seems more right at the moment.
Does that make sense to anyone so far?
Now I'm assuming the in fact what happens is not really fixing the eyes - but rather some very small movement (saccadic?) are going on there. That might connect to what Dave said a few days ago, while the big uncontrolled shifts don't help or even make me strain more, the smaller the shifts the better - until we're talking about shifts as small as practically unnoticeable.

Ideas?
I forgot one important thing:

It seems to me that the small shifting practice compels the eye automatically to what I tried to describe, the looking at a small point in a more relaxed and, most importantly, stable way. By shifting between two sides of a letter, or even between two edges of the black line forming the letter, the eye has to be stable and to look to a small point (detail) without jumping around too soon.
That's why it seems to me there has to be connection between all these "methods" or practices.
Hello to all. I have printed the text "how to see" and read it 2 times.
I have started to do in the front of snellen chart but after 1/2 minutes i start to become asleep...
Someone feel the same ? I want to focus in the details but i can't because after a while i close my eyes and feel the need to sleep for a moment.
DaniFixe Wrote:Hello to all. I have printed the text "how to see" and read it 2 times.
I have started to do in the front of snellen chart but after 1/2 minutes i start to become asleep...
Someone feel the same ? I want to focus in the details but i can't because after a while i close my eyes and feel the need to sleep for a moment.

It's pretty taxing on the nervous system to be trying to see everything at once all the time. When you start to narrow your attention to one point at a time, the strain on the system is relieved. Normally the only time your body is used to any such relief is when your eyes are closed for a long period of time, and the only time your eyes are closed for a long period of time is when you're sleeping. So your body thinks it's time to sleep. Just try to stay awake. It won't do much good for your vision to sleep at that point.
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
It happens to me too, I believe usually when I'm more tired. I think too it's like Dave says, this activity is suddenly putting you in a more relaxed situation that sends you quickly into sleeping.
Many people are walking around with a huge sleep debt, just having more caffeine when they get tired instead of allowing themselves to sleep. My meditation teacher says that you should meditate sitting up with your spine straight, not lying down, because the lying down position will make your body think it's time to sleep. She says if you're meditating and yawning or nodding off, then yes, lie down and sleep because clearly your body needs it.

This reminds me of relaxing while palming or doing the chart -- the relaxed state will allow the body fatigue to become evident. You probably don't want to stop doing vision work for a nap every single time, or you'll never make progress, but if you're not getting enough sleep that's a separate factor that needs to be addressed.
I think a combination of the two things is pretty likely too - When your body starts relaxing, it wants to take the opportunity to get a good sleep, because you were too tense while sleeping before for as restful a sleep as it could have been. So it might not necessarily be that you're not getting enough sleep, but that it wasn't very good sleep. So maybe the best thing is to do the practice during the day and refuse to sleep, then do it again in the evening and you can allow yourself to sleep at that time.
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
I understand. Now i know a trick to sleep Big Grin
Just another question,my focus in details always want to move. I can't stop in a point for a long or my vision goes worse. It is good or should i say to my mind to stop for a moment in one detail ?
I have noticed that I am not so tired anymore when I "search for details" !
I think it is because it is more energy saving for the vision system.
I noticed this when I drove a very long distance by car the other day, I never got tired.
hammer Wrote:I have noticed that I am not so tired anymore when I "search for details"! I think it is because it is more energy saving for the vision system.
I noticed this when I drove a very long distance by car the other day, I never got tired.
I had the same experience when I first started the Bates Method - I was on a long drive, getting tired, wearing my glasses as required for driving, but trying to drive a little bit without them. I noticed that when I propped them on my head and relied on my improved natural vision, I would become suddenly more alert and no longer drowsy - then, when I put the glasses back down I would have the magic eyesight again, and felt normal. It was weird, in a good way. It made me think that there is a diversion of visual energy when wearing the lenses.

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