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Dedicated to the one I love
#16
yeah but your opinion that "Bates methods should be STARTED before the Snellen goes below 20/60" is neither sensible nor correct.  It implies that your eyesight must be below 20/60 to use the Bates method.  Bates never stated that, in fact he did say that there is no limit on his method.  I respect your opinion, but you are misleading and discouraging people.  This is about the BATES METHOD, not the Otis Method.

This point has been argued with you many times before, and for some reason you will not budge, and only interested in prevention.  We are as interested in curing imperfect site as we are in preventing it.  I don't plan to argue this point again, but I want to make it clear in this thread.

Paul

PS:  I welcome everyone's opinion, but yours is actually quite radical and entirely contradicts the nature of the Bates method, which is why I pointed this out.
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#17
Dear Paul,

Subject:  What are we arguing about?

Each person I talk to seems to have his own "understanding" or "interpertation"
of Bates.  That does not make you wrong, any more that it make me wrong.

As you might know, my ophthmologists profoundly attacked Bates, said
he was screwed up, and his preventive methods DID NOT WORK.

I have read Bates extensively, and there are a number of issues that
are inportant. 

I think you must read the 1913 study, to truly understand the
conditions where Bates could be successful SYSTEMATICALLY.

And that was with kids who were just getting "into it". 

Further, Bates pointed out that he would "cure" his fellow
doctors at his graduate school, and the head of the
school would put the student-doctors right back
into the minus.

Bates said "...throw away your glasses and SEE".  This
is the same thing that Jacob Liberman said.  But to do
that you must pass some lined on the DMV Snellen.

A person at -9 diopters can not throw away a -9 dipoter
minus lens.

So let us respect our various understanding of Bates,
and, if you can, restrict your use of the minus lens
and Bates recommended. 

And continue helping these posters with these various
issues.

Best,

Otis







yeah but your opinion that "Bates methods should be STARTED before the Snellen goes below 20/60" is neither sensible nor correct.  It implies that your eyesight must be below 20/60 to use the Bates method.  Bates never stated that, in fact he did say that there is no limit on his method.  I respect your opinion, but you are misleading and discouraging people.  This is about the BATES METHOD, not the Otis Method.
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#18
Paul wrote that "a large number of people have cured themselves from 20/400 and worse."  Who are they?  I keep turning to the success stories folder to learn from people who have already gone down this path successfully.  But, honestly, why is the folder so thin? 

David's "about the webmaster" page too has not been updated since 2003 it seems. 

Also, it seems many people have had clear flashes, which I think are attributable both to Bates-inspired openness and empowerment, as well as to the refractive effects of natural tearing.  (The latter explains why they typically last until you blink.)  These clear flashes are deeply rewarding, important, and they fuel our hope.  However, why has only one person on this website reported a permanent clear flash? 

I am sorry if that is an impossible question--perhaps the reason is that these people are simply not blogging.  But, wouldn't they be likely to share their experiences?  Or, is not discussing success somehow part of the Bates method in its emphasis on doing your best, for yourself, at your own pace?
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#19
Dear Trail,

Subject: The majority-opinion hostility towards ANY preventive
method.

TrailMix> Paul wrote that "a large number of people have cured themselves from 20/400 and worse."  Who are they?  I keep turning to the success stories folder to learn from people who have already gone down this path successfully.  But, honestly, why is the folder so thin? 

Otis>  I was had to wonder what the ophthalmologist I went
to "trashed" Bates.  I mean, he seemed to be a nice guy
and had not insulted this ophthalmologist.

Otis>  They say you can always identify the pioneer -- by
the arrows in his back!!!

Otis>  So I was very curious to investigate this hostility,
and try to work towards a better solution.

Otis> When I got "pesky" with my questions, the
ophthalmologist turned to my parents and said, "...when
you become an ophthalmologist ... THEN you will
understand."

Otis>  Well, that was an insult.  So I thought SURELY
SOME ODs must "wise up", and at at least help
their own children.  After all, if they are THAT smart,
they must help their family.

Otis> When you "measure" at 20/50 to 20/60, and
a minus clears to 20/15 or so, the OD or MD should
tell you this, and say that for reasons of driving
a car, you must:

1.  Wear a -1.25 diopter lens to pass the 20/20 line,
or

2.  Develop your own method, (Bates or anything), and
with this method, monitor your Snellen and pass
the 20/20 line, naked eye.

That would truly put the responsibility to accomplish
that task.

As Paul said, (and I can not argue the point) many
have done it.

The only issue is this.  Can you do it?

Just one man's opinion.

Otis
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#20
Yes, I do need to update that page, along with many other things in the back of my mind. But like I've said before, if you want to know how much improvement a poster here has had, including me, you need to ask them, if you can't find more info by clicking their profile and clicking the link to read through their posts.

Every month someone brings up clear flashes, and the idea that they're all just a thick layer of tears or any other number of guesses, and we're gone over it many times. If you don't get much of a response here, I'd recommend searching for "clear flash" and "clear flashes" and several discussions should pop up. That will answer your questions about them. Unless you have clear flashes or extended periods of clear vision, it's easy to think that they aren't real signs of improvement, and that's why I encourage everyone to just practice the techniques instead of trying to figure it out intellectually. It's absolutely impossible to illustrate this stuff very well when someone has poor vision himself and doesn't go through the process of relearning correct use of the eyes that is crucial for understanding the principles and methods.

This forum, or any of the site, is not designed to impress skeptics or convince anyone, and while I've made some attempts at it, usually don't have much interest in trying to do so. The site is mainly meant to assist people who are easily interested in improving their vision by this means.

It's a rule of thumb on online forums that about 1% of the readers make any posts. Only a small fraction, maybe 20%, of the visitors here register, and out of those, about 5% make up the majority of the posts. So you hear mostly from about the top 1% who like to chat on forums.

It's sort of rare for anyone to eliminate high myopia on his own, as it is a difficult process for someone who has almost zero chance of really getting it at first, so the best cases would be those who work with teachers and get the kind of feedback that is necessary in most cases. So I recommend contacting a few experienced Bates teachers to find out about their work. I've thought about that issue a lot. It's the problem with a self-improvement process such as this: Everyone starts with the problems they have, and they use those problems as an approach to solving that very problem, and in this way they fail at it. But some people have managed to get past that and succeed. It takes a certain ingenuity to get past that and realize that it's going to be tricky. But fortunately, the natural laws of normalization of health are on our side.

David
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
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#21
Thank you very much. 

By the way, David, when is your book coming out?  I very much appreciate the distilled way you write about Bates and hope someday you write about the methods, tips, and attitudes you have learned in a book!

My question was less skepticism then curiosity. I have been studying Bates for 9 years and actually support his work immensely, even if it might not cure high myopia. 

My baseline is -8 with 2 or 3 diopters improvement over the years.  One of the things I learned is that gradually reducing prescriptions does not work for me.  Like everyone, the most important thing is to not think about the eyes, and the reduced prescription approach did not allow me to do that, even though I enjoyed the process of learning about Bates and experienced significant improvement.  Wearing full prescription contacts with on-and-off +3 reading glasses is my current preference. 

Though weak lenses bother me, wearing nothing at all and seeing severe blur is wonderful.  I am currently thinking about radically changing my life to be able to do that, but it is a big decision, so I turned to this site.

Regarding clear flashes, in my comment I mentioned that I think they are not "just" tears, but also result from Bates-fed openness.  I think it is both.  But I wonder if they set up false promises.  Maybe progress plateaus at a few diopters for everyone.  Maybe people have experienced permanent clear flashes from heavy myopia and I just have not found their stories. 

I just searched the forum and came across several other people looking for the same kind of information without much response.  Hopefully the "success stories" folder will fill up over the years.

Thanks.
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#22
Well like I said, the internet isn't the best place to look for success stories for severe conditions, because what you get is generally just people working on their own, and it's too much for most people to do on their own. And it's not that progress has to stop at a certain point like 3 diopters; it just requires more of a severe change for a person in his way of doing things. Heck, I've had to relearn how to do virtually everything in order to stop straining my eyes, including changing how I speak, breathe, use the computer, and especially how I think. And when I talk about changing thinking, it isn't in a philosophical sense; it's changing how you process information, how you come to conclusions, how you remember things, everything, because it's an ingrained habit of forcing and pushing the mind that has to be replaced with a way of allowing and receiving and touching thoughts very lightly.

To draw a parallel, cases of people overcoming cancer without invasive treatment hardly even seem that rare anymore to me, because I just happen to hear about another one every month or so. But if you go out looking for such cases, they're going to be a lot sparser than people overcoming lesser conditions. Everyone has had lots of little conditions that have gone away on their own when we pay little attention to them and don't treat it as a crisis.

On clear flashes, why think negative when there are plenty of people to do it for you? It's like we get conditioned that everyone should expect the worst and hope for the best, as if hoping for the best means anything at all when you're decided that the worst will happen.

I don't know if you mean you've been practicing Bates for 9 years or just studying it, but if you've been practicing it that long, I'd have to suggest you look into completely changing your approach to it, because if you aren't making progress, we can certainly both agree that what you're doing now isn't working. I can see why you feel that it's of limited benefit or something.

David
Site Administrator

"Half of our funny, heathen lives, we are bent double to gather things we have tossed away." - George Meredith
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#23
David Wrote:Every month someone brings up clear flashes, and the idea that they're all just a thick layer of tears or any other number of guesses, and we're gone over it many times. If you don't get much of a response here, I'd recommend searching for "clear flash" and "clear flashes" and several discussions should pop up. That will answer your questions about them.

David

Thanks David, search through the discussions for "clear flash" and had a lot of my questions answered. Seem like many had their clear flashes when they are in motion, ie riding a bike, in a car etc..  Will work on my clear flash for these 2 weeks by imagining things to be moving, and also feeling oppositional motions as and when I can.
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#24
I wore reduced prescriptions for two or three years, which was enlightening in its own way, but I only make significant progress when I do not wear any lenses (except perhaps pluses), and I only do that when I am on vacation.  However I have been thinking about Bates since first reading about him, and I believe my understanding of Bates and visual behavior has grown steadily over the years. 

I am currently trying to come up with a way to make a living without needing to wear glasses...the basic dilemma.  While I try to figure that out my practice consists in pretending I am not wearing anything, not caring about glasses, pursuing happiness, and occasionally wearing one full prescription contact lens (to give one eye a break) and regularly wearing +3 glasses.

I am very grateful for your work.
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#25
Wow, my story really stirred up some comments!  ;D  Anyhow, I have to say that clear flashes are real encouragement, and I get them even when my eyes aren't watery or teary.  The fact that I can see clearly, for even an instant, means that I can learn to do it for longer periods.  I have, in fact, maintained the clarity for several seconds, I only wish I could figure out how to do it for longer, but I guess that will come with time.

And, I sort of agree with Otis in that if you start vision improvement before it gets really bad, it is easier to achieve success.

And, I have a poll posted to determine what people started at which corresponds nicely with another poll somewhere in these message boards as to how much success people have acheived.  Only 2 people, myself and one other, started out with vision that is so bad.  Most everyone else could "take their glasses off and see" since their vision was well enough to function.

And I, too, have had to change the way I do most everything in my life in order to see well.  I have been working hard to breath when I read, I tend to hold my breath.  My face tenses up at almost everything.  When I drive I have a tendency to tilt my head back (I guess in kind of a squint) and to focus on things nearer to me than further from me.  And I am having to learn how to read properly, I focus too much on each word.
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#26
Just an update, I went to the eye doctor yesterday, my contact lens script is now -4.00 and my eyeglass script -4.5, an improvement of 1.5.  My eyeglass script 2 years ago was -5.5 plus a .5 cylinder (now no cylinder) and contacts were -5.5 and -5.25.

After rereading several posts, I think it may be helpful for me to note what I have learned in the last 2 years.  Bates is more than seeing right, it is a whole body and mind approach that affects more than vision.  Perhaps one can achieve the same success through yoga?
I have learned . . .
1.  to skim the tops of the words when I ready, greatly improving my reading speed and decreasing my strain.
2.  I grind my teeth and have practiced also relaxing my jaw.
3.  to relax, I used to tense my shoulders and back most of the time causing my back and shoulders to ache, now I am relatively pain free.
4.  contacts work better for me.  My vision was stable for 3 years before I started wearing glasses exclusively again, in one year my vision worsened by over 1 point.
5.  the best thing is no glasses, but its too dangerous to drive without them
6.  lying to your optometrist as to why you want a lower prescription works better than explaining bates (i can't read with such a high script, can I get a lower one?)
7.  sunning is the best exercise ever.  when my mom and sister are squinting and get headaches, i am good to go, never wear sunglasses and don't get a headache from the sun.
8.  visualization is key.  when I'm stuck in my stuffy office, i imagine looking through the walls and beyond.  i relax and look into the distance.  or at night when laying in bed,  i imagine i am looking far away.
9.  i strain when looking far away, causing poor vision
10.  relax, breath, and let go and good vision will come, it just takes longer the worse your vision is.

Well, thats all I can think of right now.  exercises that I use regularly are swinging and sunning.  i use swinging as part of my daily exercise routine, it helps prevent and cure a stiff back, sore butt, and achy neck.
Hope is our strongest weapon, as long as we have hope, then we can succeed.  When you expect failure, you get failure.
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#27
Congrats for your achievements! That's inspiring to hear. You have very good faith there Smile

I was wondering also, why you do not do any palming exercises? I'm just curious, because to me palming seems to give the most significant impact. But yeah, different people different causes. Smile
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#28
wow, its been a long time since I posted. As usual, the job gets slow around Thanksgiving. Its been a crazy, hectic year. I'm on my third job this year, after having been with the same company for five years. And I had to take a pay cut to get it, but some work is better than no work. On top of all that, I finally got my son into occupational therapy and a diagnosis of a sensory perception disorder. But, enough excuses. As usual, I took my glasses off over Thanksgiving break, by the end of the 4 days, putting my glasses on was like wearing a brick on my face. ;D I was so used to teh way things looked, I actually felt as if I couldn't focus. As soon as I got home, I checked out the eye chart to see if my vision was any better and, much to my surprise, I could make out the big E on top! It wasn't clear, but it is the first time since I can remember that I actually saw the little legs on the E without my glasses. So I put on my half strength glasses (around a -2 or -2.5, can't remember anymore) and could see almost well enought too drive (20/40). I have to use the full strenght at night (-4.5) or evertything looks like a giant halo. But when I put on the full strenght glasses, I feel like I can't see. Everythign is clearer, yes, but it is hard for me to focus. I can really feel how much tension glasses cause and I wish I could throw them away forever. But, unlike some people, I am not willing to take the risk of driving while nearlly blind. In fact, while wearing my weaker glasses, reading this screen is not clear, but clear flashes come and go. I really don't need to see what I'm typing, because I know where the keys are (it's like eating in the dark, you know where your mouth is).

In response to the previous post, I do palm, just not very often. I alwasy palm after sunning, it's a 2 part process. You sun, then allow your eyes to relax and recover while palming. This is actually my favorie exercise, I sun whenever I get the chance. While sitting outside taking a break or whenever. Which reminds me, I never wear sunglasses anymore. We spent 4 days on the water off Big Pine Key in Florida, and I never wore sunglasses, never got a headeache, and never burned my eyes. It was milder than usual, though, I didn't wear sunscreen and didn't get sunburned like I usually do when we go out camping over Thanksgiving.

I really, truly believe that the best way to improve yoru vision is to just throw your glasses away and never wear them again. I have been unable to that point yet since I am afraid to drive blind. But that time will come, I am certain, it will just take longer since I am still wearing glasses most of the time. You get used to being able to see and being able to not see, and when y ou switch back and forth, your no longer comfortable with the blurry vision, thus creating a vicious circle of wearing your glasses because you need to see, but taking them off because you want to see naturally.

Until next time.

Michele
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#29
Hi Michelle,

Glad to see that you're posting again Smile Your thread in the success stories was the one that really gave me a lot of hope when I first started the Bates method a year ago. Thanks a lot for keeping it updated!

I hope your vision continues to improve. I noticed in your last post that you often to your vision without glasses as being 'nearly blind'. Before I go further, I definitely agree, wear the legal correction standard while driving. But I wonder if you might want to look at your natural vision more positively. The reason I say this is that I see a memory of myself in your post - before I started the Bates method, and at the beginning of it, I often said the same thing: I'm blind without glasses. It was so negative, and gave me such a physical need for my glasses. Incidentally, I was living with a blind girl when I started the Bates method. Nothing could have been better for me. First of all, she proved that it is possible to do nearly everything completely blind, while maintaining a positive attitude. In fact, she is so positive she made it seem like being blind wasn't so bad. Second, I learned that in fact, without glasses I was far from blind.

I think this mental shift in my attitude about my blurry vision went a long way to improving my eyesight! For everything that I put my glasses on for I would think, well, C doesn't need them to watch movies, so why should I? and so on. It made me appreaciate what I can see so so much more. Now, instead of saying, 'I'm blind without glasses', I say, the world is so much more beautiful without my glasses, and I really mean it!

Best wishes to you and your family,
Sorrisi
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#30
I think your story inspired a lot of people, because everyone wants to have "proof" that something works, before they want to try it out themselves. It's just way better to try it and then you'll get the proof for yourself. It's all in the mind.

Sorris, if I look at your improvement, it's huge, I'm glad you made it to this point and hope you'll go on and keep encouraging us with your stories. Probably, people are asking you to tell in detail what you do but that would be a wrong aproach for them I think.

Everyone sais it's better to throw your glasses away, that's true and I've never worn glasses. But on the other hand I've never really put any effort in this method and I want to take it up soon. I have to try it myself, because I couldn't find a Bates teacher in Belgium.
The only thing I noticed that since I read about Bates my vision almost hasn't worsened for 3 years and now it's time to try to improve it.
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