from the Introduction
My introduction to the world of prescription eyewear began in grade four. As I sat in the classroom one day, the desk suddenly seemed to move around me. The entire room then started to spin. The vertigo attack left me queasy and clammy and I obviously didn’t look well to the teacher. The next thing I recall was visiting the school nurse’s office where my vision was tested by reading an eye chart. The nurse then recommended me for an eye examination by a specialist. Whether it was an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, I don’t know; the result was my first pair of glasses.
The novelty of wearing glasses was fun at the beginning. But the novelty quickly wore off; the fun turned to loathing as my lenses got thicker each year. The impediments of glasses led me to reflect about my fate more than once: “Why do I have such lousy eyesight? If people in ancient times had vision this poor, how did they function before glasses were invented? How on earth did they manage to do things and get around with such blurry sight?”
I also remember reading about my condition of myopia (nearsightedness) being hereditary. This made absolutely no sense to me at the time. Neither of my two brothers were nearsighted. Nor did my parents have myopia as children (although they did eventually get them as adults, their prescriptions were very weak compared to mine). None of my grandparents had glasses for myopia when they were young either. My instincts were giving me a message that something was amiss.
Then one day while reading an alternative health magazine I came across a brief reference to a controversial eye doctor named William Horatio Bates. The piece stated he had written a book in the early 1900s entitled The Cure for Imperfect Sight by Treatment Without Glasses. I immediately “knew” my childhood instincts were right. This was my first step on the journey of Natural Vision Improvement.
I was hopeful my rate of improvement would be fairly quick, yet it wasn't to be. The path of improvement was a long journey that seemed to retreat many times. It also felt too slow, lonely and frustrating, and I considered giving up more than once. But I remembered the advice of Harry Benjamin, author of Better Eyesight Without Glasses, to have “faith, patience and determination.” Taoism also reminded me to be patient: “He who strides cannot maintain the pace.”
For example, early in my NVI program I took the plunge with naked eyes during office meetings to help wean myself from the strong prescription lenses. My natural sight at that point was so fuzzy (technically, I was legally blind without glasses) I had tremendous difficulty making out facial features of people three feet across the table from me. The eyes, nose and mouth of a person’s face would be awash in a homogenous, skin-toned hue. My vision gradually improved--month by month, year by year--beyond this abysmal state to a point where I could see remarkably well at much farther distances, even under low light conditions.
I eventually got to the point where I could function quite well without the aid of prescription eyewear for most activities, including golfing. It was during a golf game with my wife late one summer evening that I realized how far I’d come since I started the journey. We were getting in the last couple of holes at dusk and I was relying solely on my natural eyesight. While standing on the teebox of a par-four, 396 yards long, I looked towards the green and could see the flag on the pin distinctly from that distance.
I mentioned my observations to my wife without a response. So when I mentioned it again, she decided to test me. She asked what color the flag was. There were three possible choices depending on where the hole was cut--blue for back of green, yellow for the middle, or red for the front. Without hesitation, I answered yellow because that's clearly what I saw--no guessing. Although she verified it, the confirmation wasn’t necessary; I knew what I had seen was correct.
At the risk of sounding melodramatic, I can assure you that the change in vision from before to after feels remarkably different. Sure there was clarity with artificial lenses, but the vision was very harsh, distorted and two-dimensional. The world was also a very frightening and threatening place; the strain and adaptation required to see through powerful, rigid glasses under constantly varying lighting conditions throughout each day took such a physical and psychological toll. Experiencing good vision the way nature intended is a sight to behold! I marvel at the true depth perception, shimmering colors and vivid textures--to actually have the sensation that I’m fully immersed in my surroundings, and not just a spectator. My natural vision at its clearest moments brings about a relaxed, euphoric and blissful state of body and mind that I never before knew was possible. Stumbling upon the road of vision improvement has been a blessing and a multifaceted adventure. Most of all, it’s been a liberating journey.