Bates Method and Imagination

Can you improve your imagination?

The Bates Method recognizes that we can improve our imagination and that we can use our imagination to improve our eyesight.

I think anybody could contemplate that for a moment and say, “Well sure, I can have a better imagination.  I can improve my mental faculty of imagination.”

I want to remind us that the act of seeing is largely a mental faculty that draws upon our memories and our imagination. 

So if you can improve your imagination you can improve your eyesight!

Look up and away. Breathe. Blink. Then come back!

Imagination and Stories

Imagination is most effective, most vivid, most real when we are relaxed in our minds and when it is effortless.

Imagine listening to a story that captivates your attention and the mental pictures that you form in your mind as you hear the story.

Listening to engaging stories and ALLOWING your imagination to form mental pictures is a wonderful practice for also improving your eyesight. 

Imagine the Illusions of Good Eyesight

Another practical application of using our imaginations for improving eyesight is to imagine the illusions of good eyesight.

The Bates Method places a lot of emphasis on recognizing certain visual illusions that happen when we have good eyesight.  We can use our imaginations to empower those illusions.

For example, Imagine white spaces whiter than they are in between the spaces of the black letters on the eye chart.

Or imagine objects moving contrary to the direction that your head and eyes are moving, so imagine oppositional movement.

Simply imagine objects moving All Day Long!

You can imagine colors as bright and vivid and distinct.

Imagine one part of the picture that happens in your mind as being more clear and more distinct than the other parts of the picture.

Oftentimes it is easier to close one’s eyes and to imagine the things that we see in the world, things that we see in our minds. 

And with enough relaxation and enough practice one can imagine things with eyes opened.

Imagination and Eyesight Happen in the Mind

Our eyes are seeing the light rays that are bouncing off of objects and we form pictures in our minds. We make sense of those light rays by forming mental pictures in our minds.

Imagination is not dependent upon the things that our physical senses are actually perceiving-- and the things that we are physically perceiving can be the raw materials from which our imaginations build a picture of the world. 

So allow your imagination to come to you and be like a child who unabashedly uses their imagination. Use the sensory perceptions that we gain from our eyes to inform our imaginations.

Its not OUT There

It’s not as much as what is out there in the world but what we form in our minds- what pictures we form in our mind's eye.

In that case, its not so much what we do with our eyes, but what we do with our minds that determines whether or not we are seeing clearly. 

The Bates Method encourages us to forget about our eyes and use our minds to see clearly.

For example, you could look at the eye chart and see what you see. Then close your eyes and imagine the letters clearly and black and distinct.  Imagine them moving and then open your eyes. If you are able to maintain your relaxations and imagination of the letters, then they will come in clearly.

The Bates Method and Vision Improvement Can Be as Fun as Listening to Your Favorite Story

Sometimes its easier to approach improving our eyesight by beholding it as simply improving our imaginations.

It adds a certain level of fun and engagement rather than creating a strain to try to change our eyesight.

When we are successful with improving our imagination, we can then become successful in improving what we are actually seeing.  Light rays from objects can then come in clear and distinct and create beautiful pictures for our mind’s eye!

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