A MONTHLY MAGAZINE DEVOTED TO THE PREVENTION AND CURE OF
IMPERFECT SIGHT WITHOUT GLASSES
If you learn the fundamental principles
of perfect sight and will consciously keep them in mind your defective vision will disappear. The following discoveries were
made by Dr. Bates and his method is based on them. With it he has cured so-called incurable cases;
1 - Many blind people are curable.
2 - All errors of refraction are functional, therefore curable.
3 - All defective vision is due to strain in some form.
4 - Strain is relieved by relaxation.
You can demonstrate to your own satisfaction that strain lowers the vision.
When you stare,
you strain. Look fixedly at one object for five seconds or longer. What happens? The object blurs and finally disappears.
Also, your eyes are made uncomfortable by this experiment. When you rest your eyes for a few moments the vision is improved
and the discomfort relieved.
Have someone with perfect sight demonstrate the fundamental principles contained in Dr.
Bates’ book, “Perfect Sight Without Glasses.” (Original book is; Perfect Sight Without
Glasses - Cure Of Imperfect Sight By Treatment Without Glasses.) If the suggestions and instructions are carried out,
and glasses discarded, it is possible to improve the vision without personally consulting a physician.
Sight Without Glasses” will be sent C.O.D. on five days’ approval. $Price, $5.00.
Central Fixation Publishing
383 Madison Avenue, New York City
It has always been demonstrated that the continuous memory, imagination,
or vision of one thing for any length of time is impossible. To see one letter of the Snellen test card continuously, it is
necessary to shift from one part of the letter to another. By alternately moving the eyes from one side of the letter to the
other, it is possible to imagine the letter to be moving in the opposite direction to the movement of the eyes. This movement
of the letter is called a swing. When it is slow, easy, short, about one-quarter of an inch or less, maximum vision is obtained
which continues as long as the swing continues.
As long as we are awake, we are thinking, remembering, or imagining mental
pictures, and are comfortable. To go around blind requires a distinct effort which is a strain on all the nerves and is always
uncomfortable. The normal mind alternates its attention from one mental picture to another, which is a relaxation or rest.
The memory, or imagination, is best when one thing is imagined better than all other things, Central Fixation, but constant
shifting is necessary to maintain Central Fixation.
One of the best methods to improve the vision is to regard a letter
of the Snellen test card with the eyes open, then close the eyes and remember or imagine the letter better for about ten seconds,
open the eyes and regard the letter while testing the imagination of the letter for a moment. By alternately regarding the
letter with eyes open and closed, the imagination of the letter improves in flashes. By continuing to alternate the flashes
improve and last longer until the vision becomes continuously improved.
Always shift part to
part on the letter when the eyes are open and in the imagination when the eyes are closed.
OLD AGE SIGHT
By W. H. Bates, M.D.
When most people with normal eyes arrive at the age of forty and upwards, they usually have difficulty
in reading books or newspapers, although their sight for distance may be normal. At the age of fifty or upwards, such persons
become less able to read at the near point or find it impossible to read even headlines of a newspaper clearly or distinctly.
This condition has been called old-age sight, although it could be defined more accurately as the imperfect sight of middle
age. The medical term for this form of imperfect sight is presbyopia. While imperfect sight occurs quite commonly in middle
age, it does occur in individuals under thirty years of age and more rarely in children. There are people, however, who even
at the age of eighty or ninety are able to read just as well as when they were younger.
The cause of presbyopia is said
to be due to the hardening of the crystalline lens of the eye to such an extent that the focus of the eye cannot be brought
to a near point on account of the inability of the hard lens to change its shape. Almost every eye specialist believes this
theory. In my book “Perfect Sight Without Glasses” I have described the evidence which proves that the theory
At one time I was unable to read without glasses. After I found that the lens was not a factor in accommodation,
I realized that presbyopia might be cured in some cases. Then, having cured my own eyes, I felt that the old theory of the
cause of presbyopia was wrong. Since that time so many patients who were unable to read without glasses have recovered that
I feel most, if not all, can be cured. In my experience I have never met with a case of presbyopia which could not be temporarily
In the treatment of presbyopia most persons experience a decidedly uncomfortable feeling in their eyes when
they look at fine print so close that they fail to read it. The more they try to see, the worse it becomes and the more uncomfortable
do their eyes feel.
+By closing their eyes and resting
them, their vision becomes better immediately after the eyes are opened, but only for a short time.
+It can be demonstrated that by staring at one letter or a part of one letter, while trying to see
it perfectly, the vision always becomes worse.
+If the patient alternately closes the eyes and opens them, blinking,
the vision may be improved.
+One can look at the white
spaces between the lines and imagine them whiter than they really are, whiter than the margin of the card.
is accomplished, the black letters become blacker and may be read without any effort, easily, continuously, without fatigue.
+Moving the head one-quarter of an inch or less from side to side, while
looking at the white spaces, is also a benefit in many cases.
others, holding the head still and moving the page of fine print from side to side a short distance, may improve the ability
to read when the
movement of the head may fail. Keep the head, neck relaxed and allow some movement with the eyes.
+Many people can read the newspaper when they hold it two feet from their
eyes, although they are not able to read it at twelve inches or
nearer. In such cases reading the large letters at two
feet and improving the vision at this distance by alternately resting the eyes, enables
the patient to gradually shorten
the distance from the eyes until it can be read at twelve inches, later at six inches or nearer.
Some years ago a woman, eighty-seven years old was treated for presbyopia. The
eyestrain was so great that she had been unable to obtain glasses which were satisfactory. There was a history of attacks
of hemorrhage in various parts of the retina, including the region of the center of sight or the macula. At this time, however,
the hemorrhages had all disappeared, and the retina was normal.
She was very much worried about her eyes and had a lot
to say. Never in my life have I heard anyone talk so rapidly and say so much in so short a time. She repeated herself over
and over again, and the constant idea that she tried to emphasize was that she was blind and that no one could give her any
relief. It was difficult for me to persuade her to listen to me at first. I had to wait until she stopped for breath and then
I handed her some diamond type, which I asked her to read. She very promptly told me that it was impossible, that the print
was too small, and that when she tried to read it she suffered from pain, headache, and discomfort.
When my second chance
came to speak, I asked her to imagine the white spaces between the lines to be perfectly white. She at once told me that that
would not help her, that she could put all the white between the lines that I desired and that she was confident it would
not be of any use, although she claimed to have a wonderful imagination. It seemed as though I heard two voices at the same
time. One was constantly repeating that it was impossible to read such fine print, while the other voice was reading it at
the same time. The audience which had collected around her, relatives, friends and servants, were thrilled, and it seemed
everybody was trying to say something, to offer suggestions, and to give advice. Before we could stop her, this elderly woman
read the whole card as rapidly as any one could have read it who had normal vision. When she had finished reading, and while
she was wondering how she came to do it, I asked her for an explanation. She answered:
“When you asked me to imagine
the white spaces between the lines to be perfectly white, I at once recalled white paint. With the help of my imagination
I painted these white spaces with this white paint, and when I did that I was able to read.”
While it is sometimes
very difficult to cure presbyopia, it is, fortunately, very easy to prevent it. Oliver Wendell Holmes told us how to do it
in “The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table,” and it is astonishing, not only that no attention whatever was paid
to his advice, but that we are continually warned against the very course which was found so beneficial in the case he records:
“There is now living in New York State,” he says, “an old gentleman who, perceiving his sight to fail,
immediately took to exercising it on the finest print, and in this way fairly bullied Nature out of her foolish habit of taking
liberties at the age of forty-five or thereabouts. And now this old gentleman performs the most extraordinary feats with his
pen, showing that his eyes must be a pair of microscopes. I should be afraid to say how much he writes in the compass of a
half-dime, whether the Psalms of the Gospels, or the Psalms and the Gospels, I won’t be positive.”
whose sight is beginning to fail at the near-point, or who are approaching the presbyopic age, should imitate the example
of this remarkable old gentleman. Get a specimen of diamond type, and read it every day in an artificial light, bringing it
closer and closer to the eye till it can be read at six inches or less. Or get a specimen of type reduced by photography until
it is much smaller than diamond type, and do the same. You will thus escape, not only the necessity of wearing glasses for
reading and near work, but all of those eye troubles which now so often darken the later years of life.
STORIES FROM THE CLINIC
No. 64: by Emily C. Lierman
Since we have had our private clinic here at the office, the charity patients come mostly from physicians.
Others are sent by ministers of all churches.
Albert, aged sixteen, was sent to us by a dentist's assistant who told
me of his pitiable condition. His first visit was on December 6, 1924. Albert's sister, who is devoted to him, was present,
being anxious to know if we could help him. When he appeared he was wearing a black patch over his left eye because the light
troubled him and he suffered intense pain. With the test card the vision of his right eye was normal, or 10/10, but the left
eye had only light perception. This is a copy of his prescription for glasses, which he had worn for some time:
R, 0.50 D C 90
L, 2.00 D C 90
Dr. Bates examined him with the ophthalmoscope and found Keratitis, or inflammation of the front
of the eyeball of the left eye. The right eye was normal. While the examination was going on, Albert's sister was weeping.
She tried very hard to conceal her tears but in vain. They had been to other doctors and were told that Albert would always
have to wear glasses to save the right eye; nothing more could be done for the left eye. The last oculist they consulted said
the left eye had cataract and as there was no sight, there was no use to operate. What a shock it was to his family!
placed Albert in the sun and focused the sunglass on his closed eyelid. Then I raised the upper lid and quickly focused the
strong light of the sun on the white part of the eye as he looked down. Immediately he called out to his sister: "I see
the light. I can see a sort of web inside of my eye when the light is focused on it." This made me very happy indeed.
I knew then that Albert could be benefited. His sister was overcome. While the tears flowed down her cheeks she said: "If
you can only save that eye, there is nothing in the world I would not do for him. Mother and I will take care of him. He need
never work again. I can earn enough money for both of us and he can spend all his time taking care of his eye. He must not
go blind." The girl was hysterical, of course, but she meant every word she said. She loved her brother. At her age other
girls are usually planning a future for themselves, but she was willing to sacrifice herself, so that her brother would not
go blind. That is love, indeed.
When we started treatment, Albert became enthusiastic and palmed his eyes for more than
a half-hour. He was told to think of pleasant things while palming. Being a perfectly normal boy, he could easily think of
such sports as baseball and other outdoor games. He liked to think of the movies and could imagine scenes from the picture
called "The Covered Wagon."
One could hear a pin drop when Albert first looked at the test card with his left
eye, still keeping the right one covered. The test card was placed ten feet from his eyes and, while swinging his body from
side to side, he flashed the large C on the top of the card. I was careful not to have him strain to see more, so he was told
to sit comfortably and palm again.
He was with me over two hours that day and I improved his left eye to 10/100 by alternately
palming and swinging, and also blinking. When we first removed the black patch, the sclera or white part of his left eye was
bloodshot. It looked very much as though blood was ready to pour from it at any moment. There was also a considerable watering
of the eye when it was first exposed to the light. The sun treatment instantly stopped this.
Before Albert left us on
the first day, Dr. Bates asked me if I had the time to treat him every day. Doctor said his trouble was so serious that unless
we could see him very often he was not so sure that Albert would be cured. I was glad to give the time and I have been repaid.
Our dear boy is almost cured. Don’t let anyone tell me that prayer does not help. I prayed earnestly every night for
Albert and I know that without God's help I could not have accomplished what I did. Albert believes that, too, for he helped
me in that way.
Every day that we had sunshine he improved a little with the test card. On January 17th, 1925, all the
redness of the sclera had entirely disappeared. Then his visits were less frequent. I told him to come once a week instead
of daily. But Albert practiced at home every day for hours at a time. The condition of his eye steadily improved and by the
end of February, 1925, the vision of the left eye was almost normal.
I am proud of Albert for another reason. He would
not allow his sister to support him. He asked me if shoveling snow would make his eye worse again. I said no, as shoveling
snow would be practicing the swing, and the exercise would be a benefit.
Then he said, "Please pray for snow. I
want to work." Again our prayers were answered. That very night we had a big snow storm, and when Albert came the next
day, he told me:
"I stood in line with my shovel and stretched myself as much as possible to look big. I got a job
all right, and I will earn $5.00 per day while the snow lasts." We had one snow-storm after another and Albert had much
I believe Albert's case was most remarkable because he did not at any time suffer a relapse. I believe, also,
that the sun was the main factor in the relief of his trouble. I cannot understand why so many eye specialists shield the
eyes of a patient from the sun. Bandaging them not only frightens the patient, but makes him very uncomfortable. It is true,
that when some patients first learn that they are to be treated with a sun-glass, they don’t like to try it. But just
as soon as the light is first thrown on the closed eyelids, they relax and smile and ask for more. The sun is our greatest
blessing, I think.
By George M. Guild
The little boy sat on the lap of his mother in a rocking
chair. His name was Freddie. He had had a long day and was very, very tired. His mother rocked him back and forth, petted
him with her cool hands and quieted him with her frequent kisses. He kept telling her: “Oh, mother, my eyes hurt, my
head hurts, my arms hurt, my feet hurt, I am all hurt, and I am all tired out”.
While she rocked him back and forth,
a little old man came into the room with a bag of sand over his shoulder, the sand man. Freddie did not see him coming and
Freddie’s mother did not see him coming, but when he threw a little sand into their eyes they both became very sleepy.
Freddie sat up and looked around, stretched his arms, and his big tortoise-shell glasses fell from his eyes on to the floor.
Freddie jumped down to get his glasses, and then he saw the sand man pick them up from the floor and hold them behind his
back where Freddie could not get them. Freddie was very indignant and scolded the sand man for taking his glasses, but the
little old man smiled and said: “Do they help you to see?” Freddie answered; “No, my eyes feel all right
until I put them on in the morning, and then things are blurred, and my eyes begin to pain; but the doctor said that if I
did not wear them all the time, I would most surely go blind.”
The sand man said to him: “would you like
to go with me and talk it over with the fairies? They don’t like to see little boys or babies wearing glasses.”
So the little boy took the hand of the sand man and they ran, skipping and jumping around, out of the room, into the hall,
down the stairs, out the front door, through the front gate, and then into the woods. There the moon was shining very brightly
through the trees and lighted up a space where thousands of fairies were dancing, laughing, and joking and having a good time.
Freddie was so glad to see the fairies because in his heart he knew there were fairies, but all his uncles and aunts and cousins
and grown people generally laughed at him and made fun of him for believing in fairies. When the fairies saw him coming, they
all ran to him and climbed up on his shoulders and the top of his head, sat on his ears, tickled him under the chin, and made
him laugh and he had a good time from the very start.
The fairies had some difficulty in teaching
him how to dance their way, but they finally got him to go through movements of various kinds. The one he liked best of all
was to turn his head, eyes, and his whole body as far to the right and to the left as he possibly could without trying to
see the things in front of him, which move in the opposite direction. (The Long Swing.) He never
heard fairies sing, but he heard them now and he liked the sound of their voices. He tried to sing with them, but he did so
poorly and his voice was so harsh that he could not keep on singing. But the fairies encouraged him, and told him how to hold
his lips and his tongue, and how to breathe, and very soon he was singing just as loud and just as musically as the rest of
them. This was very strange, indeed, because he sang songs that he had never heard before, that is, consciously. Of course,
when he was asleep, he would dream, perhaps, of the fairies singing, but when he woke up in the morning the dreams of the
fairies, like all other dreams, were usually soon forgotten.
What surprised him most of all was the fact that his eyes
did not bother him. He was no longer sleepy, no longer tired; every nerve in his body was just as happy as he was. There was
no pain, only a feeling of delicious joyousness that no words could describe. Not only were his eyes comfortable, free from
pain and fatigue, but he was able to see the fairies, the trees, the flowers, the birds, and the toadstools where the fairies
sat to rest. It seemed to him that he could see through the trees, that he could see through the ground down into the other
side of the earth where China was. He felt as though he could see the Chinese fairies almost as well as he could see the fairies
that surrounded him. His eyes never kept still, they were moving in all directions, and the more they moved the better they
felt. When his eyes moved in one direction, it seemed as though his hands and feet moved in the other direction, but one could
not catch the other. The movement of his eyes was all the time missing the movement of his toes. They seemed like two railroad
trains on parallel tracks, which pass each other going in the opposite direction at full speed. (When
moving the eyes, head together, same direction, while the body is kept stationary; the body appears to move in the opposite
direction that the eyes, head move to.)
He noticed that the fairies were moving in the same direction that his
body was moving; the sand man, the trees, the grass, everything was moving with his body, opposite to the movement of his
eyes. It seemed a very queer thing to him. The queerest thing about it was that for the first time in his life he felt his
eyes were rested, although they were moving, and that for the first time in his life, also, his body, his nerves were at rest
although they were, as he thought or imagined, constantly moving.
The next morning when his mother came to awaken him,
she found him looking over toward the trees and smiling. Every once in a while he would laugh out loud, as loud as he could
scream. His mother was worried and she said to him: “What is the trouble; why are you up so early? Why are you laughing,
and why do you look over toward the trees?” Then he told her what had happened to him on the previous night when the
sand man took him over to see the fairies. She smiled indulgently, as mothers will, but the next question she asked him was
the most important one of all: “Where are your glasses?” Freddie looked up into the face of his mother, who leaned
over and kissed him. He threw his arms around her and pressed his cheek against hers and said: “Mother, please forgive
me. The sand man took them. The fairies told me how to see perfectly without glasses, so that I would have no pain and would
never get tired. I want to get up early in the morning every morning and go over into the woods and play; play where the fairies
played, where the fairies cured me of my poor sight.”
Report of the League Meeting
The regular monthly meeting of the Better Eyesight league was held at 383 Madison Avenue on the evening of
May 5th. It was noted with regret that Miss Mabel A. young, secretary, was absent on account of illness.
was well attended and a number of new followers of the Bates Method were gained. Among these are many connected with the public
schools. Great progress in the work of the League was noted.
The next meeting of the League will be held at 383 Madison
Avenue on June 2nd. Subsequent meetings of the League will be held at a different address, which will be announced later.
This issue of Better Eyesight completes our 1924-1925
volume. Subscribers who wish to have their copies bound will receive the benefit of the reduced price by mailing them to us
immediately. These will go to press along with our own copies. The approximate cost will be $1.00.
An Unfair Test
Editor’s Note - Recently a high school girl wrote me of her experience with a lady school doctor
who tested her sight. This may interest the parents of school children.
I thought you might be interested
in hearing about my “run in” to use a vulgar phrase, with the school physician. She is abominably prejudiced to
put it mildly. She seemed extremely annoyed because you advertised with the aid of your book, “Perfect Sight Without
Glasses,” and your magazine “Better Eyesight,” and said something about the fact that she would be put out
of the medical profession if she did so. When I told Daddy, he asked if I had said that she probably deserved to be. I failed
to think of that in time, but I did tell her that was your only method of giving away your discoveries when nearly all the
doctors united to boycott you. That was right, wasn’t it? We would have had a very pleasant squabble then but we were
interrupted and I had to have my eyes tested. This will either amuse or disgust you, according to your mood. It irritated
me at first, and then I saw the funny side and disturbed the entire library by my unseemly chuckles. She, the doctor, is quite
six feet tall, and very masculine in appearance. Firmly grasping me by the wrist, she lifted me bodily from the chair and
dragged me to the end of the room. I couldn’t rebel, for she is most unconscionably strong. She shoved me up against
the wall, held my neck tightly, pointed miles away it seemed, and said “Read that card.” Honestly, I couldn’t
see anything, I was so frightened. She helped matters by smacking a large card against one eye. At length I read three lines,
and the doctor didn’t wait for any more, but said, “Write it down minus three” whatever that means. Then
I read with the right eye, and I went through five lines without a halt or mistake. As I paused for breath, for I had seen
it all in one flash, she said “Minus one.” I protested I had not finished, and re-read the lines with my left
eye, up to the seventh line, but she did not change the report - probably a lapse of memory, I suppose. Thus ended our historic
encounter. Today, though, I had a pleasant surprise. For the first time I saw a picture perfectly. It is one which hangs on
the opposite wall, and quite suddenly it sprang toward me more clearly than anything I had ever seen before. Now I know what
perfect sight is, and I’ll get it again, I am sure.
are publishing the following names to aid those who cannot consult Dr. Bates personally, but who wish to follow his method
correctly. These pupils have taken his course of treatment and are qualified to help others. They are constantly in touch
with Dr. Bates’ work and learn immediately of his latest discoveries.
Suggestions to Patients
By Emily C. Lierman
- Palm in the morning while in bed.
2 - Take sun treatment
for twenty minutes or longer every day.
3 - Mentally or
physically, keep up that pendulum-like motion. (Long Swing and Sway)
4 - After sitting in the sun, hold the small card and flash the white spaces.
5 - What you do not see immediately, do not worry about.
6 - While practicing with the Seven Truths of Normal sight, always move the
card slowly from side to side as you hold it six or eight inches from your eyes.
7 - To induce sleep when suffering from headache or nervous strain, close your eyes, remember the
small F or T of the ten line of the test card and imagine it is moving slightly, about one-quarter of an inch, either
up and down or to the left and right.
(Shift point to point (small part to small part) on the letter
in the mind.)
8 - There is a right way and a wrong
way to blink the eyes while practicing. Children like to hold up their two hands about ten or twelve inches apart, looking
first at one hand and then at the other. In this way one blinks when looking at the right hand and again when looking at the
left hand. The head should turn in the same direction with the eyes.
9 - Nearsighted patients sometimes get along
faster in the cure of their eyes by using two similar test cards at the same time while practicing. One card is held in the
hand while the other is five or ten feet away. The patient looks at a letter up close and imagines he sees the same letter
on the distant card. Then the patient closes his eyes and imagines that letter perfectly. Having seen it perfectly up close,
he becomes able by practice to see it just as well on the distant card.
A case Report
(Report of a man, 63 years old, who has worn glasses for a great many years. He improved his own vision merely
by following directions. Others can do the same.)
I will be 63 years old in July and have not worn lenses since reading
“Perfect Sight Without Glasses”; it will be two years the latter part of next July.
I have had monocular
vision all my life, congenital convergent squint of left eye producing what has always been called “partial blindness
from disuse.” I could always see parts of everything but nothing distinctly; enough to get around if I closed my good
eye, but could never see to read any printed matter with it.
At first I could not see the big “C” at any
distance with the left eye. Now I can see its whole outline at about six inches and all of the letters on line ten at three
or four feet.
In scanning even fine print I can now discern lines and spaces and almost distinguish the letters by holding
it close up.
I should add that I have not been at all diligent nor faithful in using Dr. Bates’ methods and am
surprised at the results obtained by me in spite of that fact. With more devotion I am sure I will get better results.
One patient, a woman of 25 or 30, had worn glasses seventeen years. She was
myopic with astigmatism, seeing about half the distance with the left eye as with the right. She had frequent headaches, could
not go to the “movies” without great distress. She spent $300 or more on glasses, had no comfort with them, and
could not see well with or without them.
She was induced to buy Dr. Bates’ book last March. She laid aside her
glasses and began to work according to the method, wholly by herself, with most satisfactory results.
Fred W. Morris, D.O.,
Ridgewood, N. J.
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Shifting, Swings, Oppositional Movement Described
Q- When I look at an object and blink, it appears to jump with each blink.
Would this be considered the short swing?
A- Yes. You unconsciously look from one side to the other of the object when
Q – Please explain the difference between the long and short swing.
A – The short swing is
about the length of a letter. The long swing is the movement of a letter an inch, a foot, or more.
Q- What are the benefits
A- The long swing relieves eye discomforts and helps one to obtain the short swing. The short swing improves
Q- Seeing stationary objects moving appears to me to be merely self-hypnotism. I can’t do it.
When riding in a train the stationary telephone poles appear to move in the opposite direction.
Of course this is an
illusion, but it is a benefit to the eyes to imagine all stationary objects moving.
Q- I heard your lecture at the Psychology
Club and immediately discarded my glasses. Now I cannot see at all and am worse off.
A- You can be cured by practicing
relaxation methods when you discard your glasses. You cannot be cured when you use your glasses for emergencies.
stress palming in your instructions. If I obtain poor results with this exercise should I continue?
A- No. Do that which
is most helpful.