Bates Method Technique of Sunning:  Harvest the Power of the Sun

Ok brace yourself for this one.

The Bates Method says sunlight is good for you.

Sunlight is good for your eyes too! Sunning, when done properly, is completely safe and brings rest and relaxation to our eyes.

Of course, there are dangers of too much sunlight and particular wavelengths of sunlight such as ultra violet; however, under most circumstances the sun is not to be feared and can serve as a wonderful tool to help bring visual relaxation and develop a tolerance to light sensitivity.

The Bates Method employes sunlight and sunning techniques to do just that.  I want to share with you a sunning technique that is beneficial, and when done properly, brings no harm whatsoever.

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

Bates Method Advice:
Sun Your Organs of Light

Our eyes are organs of light, which means that they function with contrasts of light and dark. Light rays bounce off of objects and enter our eyes.

Allowing the sun to fall onto our closed lids is a very effective way of bringing about relaxation to the eyes and mind.

It soaks our eyes in warmth, and it gives us a chance to allow the light to enter our eyes through our closed lids, without the strain of trying to see and interpret things!

In some ways, it’s the opposite of palming. Both activities give our minds a break from trying to see the world out there, but with palming we are excluding all light.  When palming correctly we only have a black field, the blackest of black.  While sunning, we also remove the strain of trying to see by closing our eyes, but we allow the light to enter our visual system through closed eye lids.

It’s a very passive activity, Imagine light rays just fall onto our eye lids.

We don’t have to do any thing to make the light rays hit our eyes, except position ourselves correctly of course.

Likewise, with the act of seeing, which is also very passive, light rays bounce of of objects and just enter our eyes.  We don’t have to try and do anything in particular to allow light rays to enter our visual system whether our eyes are open or closed.

The Bates Method teaches us that to see clearly, we simply have to open our eyes and allow those light rays that have bounced off the objects in the world to enter our eyes.  Of course, we still have to position ourselves correctly.

While sunning, that means positioning your body so that the sun is hitting your closed lids.  With the act of seeing, this correct orientation has everything to do with using the center of your sight for clear vision.

Simply open your eyes, orient to the center of sight, and allow.  We don’t have to strain and try anything in particular!

Remember that the interpretation of those light rays that enter our eyes happens in our minds!  It happens in our brains, and so to do anything in particular with our eyes, really just becomes a strain.

The practice of sunning allows us to get into the habit of allowing things to passively enter our visual system. 

And to see clearly,  we simply have to open our eyes, forget about our eyes, and just imagine things coming into our mind, rather than reaching out and searching for things with our eyes.


How It Looks

This technique is as simple as finding a comfortable spot, either sitting or standing, where the sunlight is able to fall onto your closed lids. That's it, almost.


...gently move your head and neck back and forth in an easy rhythmic manner, just like when practicing swinging.

We are Not staring at the sun!

Simply allow the sun to fall on your closed lids while gently moving your head back and forth.

Sun frequently, Sun for short periods of time, Sun for long periods of time.

Sun everyday.

Practice the Bates Method technique of Sunning as long as it is bringing you relaxation.