The other day I astonished the people around me as I strung seed beads in dim light without glasses (I am 54), and I immediately thought of this book. Until thirteen years ago I too had felt completely helpless without my glasses, which I had worn since I was ten years old. Liberman had not yet written this book, so the book that turned me around then was by Dr. William Bates, written in the 1920's. Bates is the grandfather of a slew of books, mostly written in the 1980's and 1990's, about improving vision without glasses. I set about to read them all. Take Off Your Glasses and See
by Jacob Liberman was the last in a long series and my favorite.
Liberman actually started out as an optometrist, but early on in his practice he couldn't help wondering, "Why do the eyes appear to be the only part of the physical body that is not self-healing?" Why indeed?! It is as if, as he says, we went to a doctor with a broken arm and were told "no problem, I will fit you with this brace to wear for the rest of your life." I liked Liberman the best because he not only gave a description of the very exercises (he calls them meditations) that I had been using to improve my vision, but he brought in the "mind/body" connection - it is not just about improving your acuity at reading letters on a chart twenty feet away! My own example of this is when I tried his idea of "open focus." He warned what might happen emotionally, but I thought because I had been doing the other exercises for so long I was beyond that point. I remember standing in my kitchen, after a few days of open focus, and feeling an emotional blast heading straight at me like an oncoming freight train. Two hours and many tears later, it was as if I had released a great tightness and grief which never came back, though I admit I was somewhat relieved when I figured out where it had come from-those few days of open focus. He also has some wonderful exercises to release your ability to learn (he himself found reading very difficult) as well as to see clearly (they go hand in hand). I tried them out - they were both fun and amazing. This book is not only for those "needing" glasses already but for those who would like to know how to keep the excellent vision they have, those who would like to help keep their children out of glasses, and those who as teachers would like to stem the tide of vision problems in their classrooms (which, to mix metaphors, is of epidemic proportions). I would love to see the information in this book become common knowledge.