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"Holistic Vision"
ISSN 2296-178X
3/13 (No. 19) 

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Introduction

Open eye meditation on eye floaters

“Holistic Vision” is the quarterly newsletter by the author and consciousness researcher Floco Tausin. It deals with the medical, cultural and spiritual dimensions of subjective visual phenomena (see picture). Its main topic is the study of a phenomenon called “eye floaters” (or “muscae volitantes”) through open eye meditation: Are floaters in reality a shining structure of consciousness within which we cover a distance to our origin?

Read further …

 

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News Content


1) Lead Story: no lead story

2) Nestor's Knowledge: the light of concentration
3) Tips: Buddha of intersections
4) Arts: “Blue Dragonfly” by Surmeet Kaur
5) Science: Entoptic phenomena and creativity as effects of consciousness intensification
6) Last but not Least: readers’ comments

 

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Lead Story


Dear reader, being in an intense phase of work, I am unable to provide a lead article in this newsletter.
Thanks for your understanding.
Floco



The previous Lead Stories can be accessed by members only.

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Nestor's Knowledge

My mentor, seer Nestor, about seeing the shining structure and the spiritual practice related to it.


The light of concentration



»Today you’ve seen that shining light for the first time. And starting today, you should, when looking at your dots and strands, apply enough attention and concentration each time so that your basic structure starts to light up. Therefore, the way your dots and strands appear when looking at them will show you your actual level of concentration.«

From: Mouches Volantes – Eye Floaters. The Shining Structure of Consciousness.

From: Mouches Volantes – Eye Floaters. The Shining Structure of Consciousness, p. 281. (source)

 

Nestor speaks about the light of the consciousness structure that is caused by visual concentration. In every day life, we understand concentration as a careful examination of an object, while other sensory stimuli or thoughts are ignored. That way, we obtain knowledge or become able to solve specific tasks. If we concentrate on our floaters, we realize what that state of consciousness means in terms of energy: The spheres and strings become smaller, but more focused and bright. That indicates that we actually minimize our picture detail, but at the same time intensify it. Nestor calls that procedure “compressing the layers of consciousness,” in which the energy or light that we need to perceive the whole picture compresses on that smaller detail, or on smaller space respectively.

If you want to delve deeper into the mystery of the shining structure, Nestor advises to increase concentration until the floaters light up in every session of open eye meditation. That’s because the seers understand concentration – and its contrary, relaxation – as ways to release the fixation of ourselves on one particular layer of consciousness and become mobile throughout different layers – or states – of consciousness. Visual concentration is the deliberate act of seeing that only allows for movements within a layer. However, together with the building up of energy, concentration leads to ecstatic relaxation, the involuntary, intuitive act of seeing, through which we penetrate the layers of consciousness and fly towards our source and origin.


Literature:

- Tausin, Floco: Mouches Volantes – Eye Floaters. The Shining Structure of Consciousness, Bern 2009, (ISBN: 978-3033003378), www.eye-floaters.info.

 

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Tips

Tips from the internet as well as readers’ experiences, insights and handlings related to entoptic phenomena.


Buddha of intersections

„One has to make converge the optical rainbow bindu with the bindu floating inside the eyeball. Then, after some time of meditation, a form of a buddha will reveal itself inside that rainbow sphere. … The reason behind the form of the Buddha was revealed to me at that time. It simply consists of the convergence of several bindus in the same visual field (they are actually at different distances of the retina) so it looks a bit like an intersection of circles.“
-- Manu, PhD, lama and yoga teacher


In our recent exchange about the Tibetan Buddhist Dzogchen philosophy, Manu explains an exercise that he has learned when he studied the visual practices of thögal (thod rgal). Thereby, the “bindus in the vitreous” (floaters) must converge with the “optical rainbow bindus.” Manu uses the Sanskrit term bindu (“drop”) for the shining spheres that appear as a result of that practice (cp. Tausin 2012a). According to the tradition, this convergence gives rise to the vision of a Buddha.

Sitting and meditating Buddhas in or in front of concentric rings are a common motif in Tibetan Buddhist art. Today, we rather focus on the Buddha and understand the circles around his body or head as an artistic convention, namely halos (aureola, nimbus). Originally, however, these circles could have been inspired by optic and entoptic phenomena perceived by Tibetan yogis and shamans while in altered states of consciousness. In contrast, the Buddhas are more likely to be interpreted as visions or visualizations. Thus, these Tibetan depictions can be understood as a mixture of several subjective visual phenomena, both culture-specific (visions) and culture-independent (optic and entoptic phenomena) (cp. Tausin 2012b). Now, Manu’s point is that the Buddhas seen in thögal practice and in paintings may not only have a purely cultural or traditional background, but an optic or entoptic origin as well.

 

Three intersecting circles. Source: Manu

Three intersecting circles. Source: Manu

 

With a little imagination, one can actually see the image of a sitting Buddha in the intersections of three circles:

 

Buddha in the circles’ intersection.

Buddha in the circles’ intersection. Source: FT

 

Interesting idea. But whether such a constellation of spheres actually occurs in the dynamic seeing of floaters that is long and distinct enough to give rise to the vision of a Buddha, is beyond my experience and not clear to me. As always, there is only one way to find out: seeing!

-- Floco


References:

 

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Arts

Works of art from different cultures and times that represent entoptic phenomena or could have been inspired by them..


„Blue Dragon“ by Surmeet Kaur


Even today, there are many artists who are inspired by entoptic perceptions and do entoptic art (cp. Tausin 2007). So does Surmeet Kaur. Surmeet is an Indian painter to whom entoptic phenomena are meaningful not only artistically, but also spiritually. For several years, she has been experimenting with psycho-physical practices which are part of her creative work. Her work starts with meditation, e.g. in the form of dancing, focusing on her own eyes in a mirror, practicing yoga or sitting quiet. Then she sits with her eyes closed, feels into herself and starts sketching the entoptic forms that show up before her eyes. She then transfers these forms on canvas and, thereby, breathes life into them.

 

Surmeet’s sketch of an entoptic phenomena that later became “The Blue Dragonfly.

Surmeet’s sketch of an entoptic phenomena that later became “The Blue Dragonfly.

 

“The Blue Dragonfly” is a painting of the series “Mystique Dialogue.” To Surmeet, painting is indeed a way to enter into dialogue with the mystic, but also with her inner self and her unconscious, and, thus, to learn the deeper meaning of her creative work. This is the final step that sometimes takes days, weeks or months to be fulfilled, if at all.

 

The Blue Dragonfly, 2010. Oil on canvas, 24x24”

The Blue Dragonfly, 2010. Oil on canvas, 24x24”

 

In the case of “The Blue Dragonfly,” Surmeet remembered a touching encounter with a blue dragonfly in a garden. She researched the spiritual meaning of the dragonfly and resonated with a legend of the Native American Zuni that she shares with us here:

„Once, in a little pond, in the muddy water under the lily pads, there lived a little water beetle in a community of water beetles. They lived a simple and comfortable life in the pond with few disturbances and interruptions. Once in a while, sadness would come to the community when one of their fellow beetles would climb the stem of a lily pad and would never be seen again. They knew when this happened; their friend was dead, gone forever. Then, one day, one little water beetle felt an irresistible urge to climb up that stem. However, he was determined that he would not leave forever. He would come back and tell his friends what he had found at the top. When he reached the top and climbed out of the water onto the surface of the lily pad, he was so tired, and the sun felt so warm, that he decided he must take a nap. As he slept, his body changed and when he woke up, he had turned into a beautiful blue tailed dragonfly with broad wings and a slender body designed for flying. So, fly he did! And, as he soared he saw the beauty of a whole new world and a far superior way of life to what he had never known existed. Then he remembered his beetle friends and how they were thinking by now he was dead. He wanted to go back to tell them, and explain to them that he was now more alive than he had ever been before. His life had been fulfilled rather than ended. But, his new body would not go down into the water. He could not get back to tell his friends the good news. Then he understood that their time would come, when they, too, would know what he now knew. So, he raised his wings and flew off into his joyous new life!“

References /links:

  • Tausin, Floco (2007): Entoptic Art – Entoptische Erscheinungen als Inspirationsquelle in der zeitgenössischen bildenden Kunst. In: ExtremNews, 29.1.07. www.extremnews.com (27.8.13)
  • The meaning of dragonflies in different cultures suite101.com (30.8.13)

 

You will find simillar entoptic pictures in the gallery. Do you have drawings of eye floaters or other entoptic phenomena (flying corpuscles, afterimages etc.)? Do you know of realistic, artistic and religious representations of such appearances? Then send me the picture or give me the tip; I would like to publish it in the newsletter and/or in the gallery.

 

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Science

News from medicine and humanities concerning eye floaters and entoptic phenomena.


Entoptic phenomena and creativity as effects of consciousness intensification


Frecska, Ede; Csaba E. Móré; András Vargha; Luis E. Luna (2012): Enhancement of Creative Expression and Entoptic Phenomena as After-Effects of Repeated Ayahuasca Ceremonies. In: Journal of Psychoactive Drugs 44, Nr. 3: 191-199

For 15 years, research on psychedelic substances gains steam after a forty-year break for political and social reasons. Likewise, this study from Hungary picks up a topic that was researched in the 1960s: the impact of psychedelic substances on human creativity. In contrast to these earlier studies, the authors apply modern research standards to determine psychometric measures of creativity. In addition, they combine creativity research with the archaeological and ethnographic research suggesting entoptic phenomena as a source of inspiration for the visual art of prehistoric or modern tribal societies. Thus, the authors want to find out how human creativity changes through the use of psychedelics, and what role entoptic phenomena play in this creative expression.

For this purpose, 40 individuals completed a creativity test (Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking, TTCT) before and after they participated in a two-week long ayahuasca ceremony (with repeated ingestion of the drink) in Brazil. A comparison group of 21 individuals without psychedelic experience also took the Torrance test twice, two weeks apart, without participating in the ceremony. The test consisted of two visual tasks: Participants were asked to draw as many pictures as possible starting from 35 circles in eight minutes, then to complete ten given abstract shapes in ten minutes. The results were evaluated by two independent observers and according to standardized scoring procedures, namely in terms of three aspects of creativity, “fluency,” “flexibility,” and “originality.” Also, attention was paid to the presence of six frequently mentioned types of entoptic phenomena, namely grids, parallel lines, dots or small spots, zigzag lines, curves, and meandering lines or spirals.

 

Six types of entoptic phenomena, according to Lewis-Williams und Dowson (1988).

Six types of entoptic phenomena, according to Lewis-Williams und Dowson (1988).

 

The results of the study show that repeated ayahuasca ingestion has no effect on fluency and flexibility, but it significantly increases the number of highly original solutions. In addition, the ayahuasca participants drawn significantly more entoptic forms after the ceremony than before, and significantly more than the control group. But it also became clear that the psychedelically experienced individuals had a significantly higher tendency to express entoptic forms already before the ayahuasca ceremony, compared to the inexperienced control group.


Floco’s comment

From a scientific perspective, the significance of the study is limited, as the authors acknowledge themselves. From an energetic-ecstatic point of view, however, the study can be understood as a more general insight into the perception and interpretation of entoptic phenomena on the basis of consciousness intensifying practices. The results of the study suggest that such practices have a long term effect on the visibility of entoptic phenomena, or on the individual perceptual sensitivity for such phenomena, respectively. This is evident by the fact that the tendency to draw entoptic forms already before the ayahuasca ceremony is four to five times higher in the psychedelically experienced compared to the control group. This also means that entoptic phenomena are not necessarily associated with creative abilities. For in contrast to the entoptic sensitivity, the creativity factors appear to be increased only for a short time. It follows a new insight: The special significance that was given to entoptic phenomena by shamans, seers and artists from different times and cultures, may be based not only on the fact that entoptics are seen in more intense states of consciousness, but also on the fact that they influence these individuals’ expression for longer periods, regardless of the form and quality of that expression.

Overall, the study can be understood as an argument for the theory that many abstract and geometric shapes in art history go back to the perception of and work with entoptic phenomena – especially if the artworks are accompanied or influenced by rituals of consciousness intensification, or if such influence can be assumed from the cultural context. Finally, the study’s results may also be applied to the shining structure floaters. On the one hand, floaters also belong to the forms that are perceived in more intense states of consciousness. On the other hand, the theory of shining structure floaters as vitreous opacities can not be maintained on closer inspection, and floaters are, therefore, better understood in terms of entoptic phenomena (Tausin 2011a and 2011b).

References/links:

  • Frecska, Ede; Csaba E. Móré; András Vargha; Luis E. Luna (2012): Enhancement of Creative Expression and Entoptic Phenomena as After-Effects of Repeated Ayahuasca Ceremonies. In: Journal of Psychoactive Drugs 44, Nr. 3: 191-199
  • Lewis-Williams, J. D.; Dowson, T. A. (1988): The signs of all times: Entoptic phenomena in Upper Paleolithic art. In: Current Anthropology 29, Nr. 2: 201-245
  • Tausin, Floco (2011a): In-depth observations on eye floaters – a challenge to ophthalmology. In: Alternative Culture Magazine. alternativeculture.com (30.8.13)
  • Tausin, Floco (2011b): Vitreous opacity vs. Nervous system – Do eye floaters arise from the visual nervous system? In: Ovi Magazine, October 31, 2011. www.ovimagazine.com (30.8.13)

 

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Last but not Least


Readers‘ comments on the Holistic Vision Project

 

 

“Thank you for writing the book which I know will shed
more light upon my awakening!”
-- Holly

“My left brain is ok with the idea that this [entoptic imagery] has a physiological basis. … Just the same, there is another part of me that leverages the experience at a creative level. I am open to accepting that physiology does not preclude spiritual experiences, rather, it may be the creators way of positioning us for both.”
-- John

Thanks, Holly and John. I wish you and all readers a delightful and warm autumn – and much time to see and be amazed!
-- Floco

Imprint of the Eye Floaters News

I would like to remove the quarterly appearing newsletter "Holistic Vision"

 


Further Holistic Vision News: Archive