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how to release specific eye muscles
#1
In a previous post, I wrote that I had taught myself to release the specific muscles which allow my eyes to focus in the distance. These muscles are very tiny, and it takes a long time and a lot of practice to learn to feel the sensation of releasing them. They are so subtle and hard to feel, that at first you might not be aware of any tension at all. Just remember that, unless your vision is 100% clear and in focus, there is tension that needs to be released. I include some notes here about my technique for doing this.

WHICH MUSCLES

As Sean Augensicht wrote so clearly in his post

Quote:You should not feel the muscles outside your eyes doing something to try to refocus (in reality, your eyes DO do something to refocus, namely the ciliary muscle INSIDE the eye contracts when you look at something near and relaxes when you look at something far -- but you can't feel your ciliary muscle and it's an entirely automatic mechanism)

The most relevant places to feel are the muscles in all of the flesh on the upper part of the face: the forehead, and down to your eyes. This notably includes the Magic Release Spot: the bridge of your nose, or slightly above. If you can learn to release this Spot, your distance vision will improve every time.

EFFORTLESS

The very first thing to do is to release all the excess tension you can simply by telling yourself to release it, the same way you would tell yourself to release any muscle. Tell yourself to feel an effortless, calm feeling of "muscle silence" in the entire area of your forehead and in the Magic Release Spot.

GO INSIDE THE MUSCLE

Awareness is 99% of relaxation. If you could be completely "inside" the sensation of your muscles, they would be completely released. Place yourself inside the muscles, using thoughts such as "here I am inside this flesh on my forehead, here I am inside this Spot." When you feel like you are inside these areas, feeling every sensation which you find there, they will release. A little bit of rubbing with your fingers can help awaken your awareness. One nice trick is to use your finger to wet the Magic Release Spot. The subtle coolness of the moisture evaporating helps you to feel the skin in this area.

UN-WRINKLING

One way of describing the sensation that you are looking for is that the excess tension in this area feels like the flesh is a blanket that his very tiny wrinkles in it. When you release the tension, the wrinkles smooth out, and the surface feels like it is utterly smooth and wrinkle-free. (This is a way of describing what these subtle sensations feel like, not what your forehead really looks like to other people.)

FREE

Another way of describing the sensation is that it feels like the flesh on your forehead is "free," in the sense that it is not clinging to the bone of your skull, but can slide freely over it. When you release the muscles, you may well actually feel the skin sliding in a very small way. In any case, when it feels free, it feels like it could slide easily. Try to feel the weight of your skin. Giving in to gravity, and feeling the full weight of the skin, allowing it to slide downwards over the bone, is the same as completely releasing the muscles.

INCLUDES

The muscles in this area are all physically connected to each other, so it is a complete waste of time to become obsessed with trying to release tension in one specific spot, while ignoring the rest of your forehead and your face. The mode of perception you need to use is a holistic mode, in which you feel the whole interconnected sensation of the skin of your forehead at once. Even though the Magic Release Spot is the crucial spot which I need to release, I learned that I can't release it by using thoughts such as "go inside the Magic Release Spot" or "feel the Magic Release Spot," since it is impossible to release the tension by focusing on one spot in isolation. Instead, I use a thought such as "feel the flesh of my entire forehead, including the Magic Release Spot."

RELEASE POINTS

Another very helpful trick is to press (gently) on the two points where the inside corners of your eyes come up to the bridge of your nose (medial canthus). Lightly stimulating these points will always help you to release tension in the Magic Release Spot and the forehead.

There is much more I could say on this topic, but these are a few basic pointers. Good luck!

David F.
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#2
So, when I'm palming eventually I tend to feel aching in muscles around my eyes. Should I try to rub them out, or ignore them?
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#3
Quote:So, when I'm palming eventually I tend to feel aching in muscles around my eyes. Should I try to rub them out, or ignore them?

Sometimes, at first I feel nothing at all, because I am not in touch with the eye muscles. Then, as I start to become aware of the area, I begin to feel all of the tension which is present, and this often feels like an "ache." It is not that I am becoming more tense, just more aware of the tension.

I suggest that you view every sensation, including the ache you describe, as a sensation of change in the muscles. All (involuntary) change in the muscles is good; it is what you want to feel. Any change that happens "by itself" is the sensation of the muscles releasing and working properly. Simply go inside of the sensation of the ache, and observe how the sensation flows and changes over time.
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#4
Hi David F.,

Thanks for sharing. You've reduced your refractive error by around 6 - that's fantastic. Congrats on your success, and on your continued success!

Andrew
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#5
lakeivan Wrote:
Quote:So, when I'm palming eventually I tend to feel aching in muscles around my eyes. Should I try to rub them out, or ignore them?

Sometimes, at first I feel nothing at all, because I am not in touch with the eye muscles. Then, as I start to become aware of the area, I begin to feel all of the tension which is present, and this often feels like an "ache." It is not that I am becoming more tense, just more aware of the tension.

I suggest that you view every sensation, including the ache you describe, as a sensation of change in the muscles. All (involuntary) change in the muscles is good; it is what you want to feel. Any change that happens "by itself" is the sensation of the muscles releasing and working properly. Simply go inside of the sensation of the ache, and observe how the sensation flows and changes over time.

That's what I've been doing. So more precisely my question is, should I just observe the releasing strain, or give a bit of a massage to the muscles that have strain releasing from them?

Thanks!
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#6
Quote:more precisely my question is, should I just observe the releasing strain, or give a bit of a massage to the muscles that have strain releasing from them?

My friend, it is your body, so only you can answer this question. The point is to get rid of excess tension. If a little bit of rubbing or massage helps you, then you should use it.
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#7
@lakeivan Okay, Thanks! I'll expirement further.
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#8
I always felt those muscles when doing relaxation thecniques but i never become aware of them. What a mistake i was doing.
Thank you for the tips!
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#9
By chance I found a way to relax my eye muscles not directly, but indirectly by the means of imagination.

One day I was tired of looking at small details and I had the feeling that by exaggerating the 'exercise' my eyes were even more strained and not relaxed at all.
So, to give them some rest, instead of trying to focus on a small detail, I imagined that I were looking through a pinhole or a needle's eye.
This had the immediate effect, that I felt the tension coming off my eyes.

My look was not focussed, but by the imagination of passing through a small hole, I still avoided looking at a too large area and my eyes felt really comfortable; and the more this imagination gained intensity, the clearer I could see.
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#10
Nini,

I have read in several of your posts that you "avoided looking at a too large area" and that you feel it is wrong to look at the whole scene in front of you. Personally, I don't feel this is the most helpful way to think about it, and perhaps that is why you feel strain, and that is also why your image of looking through a pinhole is relaxing for you.

For me, good vision is never about trying to "block out" or "avoid looking at" anything. You are trying to train yourself to take in more visual information, not less. Yes, you are perfectly correct that it helps your vision to pay attention (mentally) to very specific, small details of the scene. But that certainly does not mean you are trying to avoid looking at everything else. No wonder this causes stress: when you try to block out what you are looking at, you are trying to do something impossible!

This is one reason why I wrote a paragraph in my post above about using the word "INCLUDES." What I originally wrote is that it doesn't work to obsessively try to release one muscle all by itself, unless you are feeling the relationship between all the muscles that are connected to one another, so I always tell myself that I am feeling all of the muscles in my face releasing, which includes the muscle where I can feel the most tension.

In the exact same way, I find that I can't improve my vision by paying attention to one tiny detail, if I am blocking out the surrounding scene. Instead, I try to take in the whole scene, but I make sure that it includes the tiny detail which I am exploring.

Mentally, my curiosity is focussed on the specific detail that I am looking at, but I can't really see the detail unless I also take in the spatial relationship to the entire scene.
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#11
Thanks for your reminder, lakeivan, and you are right, I probably over-emphasized the focussing of the attention in a small point.

But I meant this focussing not as the final goal, an equivalent of clear vision, but only as a 'starting point' from which the visions 'clears up'.
The 'rest' of the process - the 'clearing up' - comes naturally, automatically. I don't have to pay special attention to it or 'direct' my eyes in 'their work'.
I only have to initiate or trigger the process by focussing the small points - and when the image starts clearing up, my attention is no longer restricted at all; then I 'follow' my eyes and discover the surroundings in much clearer sight.

This is not exactly like a 'clear flash'. It's usually not 20/20 vision, bur really much sharper than my 'usual' eyesight. It lasts much longer than a clear flash and can be 'reproduced' frequently.

I think by the time this could become a good seeing habit and then the first step - focussing a small point - will also come automatically with no need to concentrate on it.
But till then I still have to 'practice intentionally' from a specific 'starting point'.
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#12
I'm more aware of the bridge above the nose,but i feel that he is fighting against me. When practicing the techniques of relaxation i feel the muscle struggling. Only after 10 minutes saying to me that i accept those feelings and saying also to relax,the muscle seems getting free...what do you think, lakeivan ?
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#13
DaniFixe,

It sounds like you are learning how to release the muscles.

The best thing you wrote is that you "accept those feelings."

The first step is to tell yourself to relax, be effortless, and you did this. The key to relaxation is awareness: feeling the sensations. If you can feel every sensation in this area, it will be completely relaxed. (This is because the action of "trying to feel the muscle" causes the muscle to relax.) Tell yourself to feel every sensation in the area. Remember that anything you feel is really the sensation of a part of the muscle releasing, so all sensations are doing what you want them to do.
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#14
lakeivan, I have also one question Smile

When I want my muscles of forehead to be free and smooth I have that sensation of stretching (extending) them. Then I let them "fall" and feel their weight. Is it right?? Isn´t it tensing?
Thanx
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#15
Hi Minjja,

To answer your question: the important point is that you do not actively do anything, you simply observe the sensations that are happening "all by themselves." Any sensation that you feel (which happens by itself) is part of the process of relaxation, so all you need to do is focus on feeling all sensations in the area.

This means that if you are deliberately trying to "stretch" the skin, this isn't helpful, but if you feel that, by itself, the skin is stretching, then this is a good thing. Letting the skin fall and feeling the weight is very, very good.

I hope that helps.
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