movements in field of vision

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.

movements in field of vision

Postby altar » Mon May 10, 2010 3:16 pm

Hi all,
This might not belong in this forum, I don't know...
I was gazing out a glass window and I noticed there was a kind of fluttering. So I tuned into it more and saw that it was actually lots of tiny clear-opaque balls rapidly swimming to and fro. It reminded me of videos of little biolgical cells and structures moving about, so I wondered if it was just that, some kind of biological movement on the lens of my eye. Although with more difficulty (it is quite easy when looking out the glass) I can see the same thing looking anywhere. Does anyone know if this is the case, what these tiny swimming balls might be?
I put it in this forum because I considered the gazing, especially the adapting the gazing mode of perceiving in which I saw the balls etc. to not just at the glass, akin to meditation. Also it's kind of like body-nupassana.
Metta,
Zack
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby Sanghamitta » Mon May 10, 2010 3:31 pm

Sounds like "floaters " altar. They are chains of amino acids that float in the fluid in the eyeball. The lens acts as a microscope and magnifies them.
The definitive diagnosis is if they float away sideways if you try to look directly at them..
If you have no symptoms of illness or eye trouble its probably that.
They are harmless and normal. Now that you have noticed them you will wonder why you have not done so before. :smile:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby Kenshou » Mon May 10, 2010 5:34 pm

Might also be this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_field ... phenomenon

Tiny sparkle-like dots squiggling around, more dramatic than the typical floater. I had never noticed this until a good while after I'd started meditation, I honestly thought that I was hallucinating.
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby smokey » Mon May 10, 2010 8:31 pm

Yeah, that were most probably floaters. I have that problem too. But it is not much of a problem because I can only see them when I look at a very bright light, in fact only at the sunlight.
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby altar » Tue May 11, 2010 1:17 am

yes Kenshou it sounds just like that.
What is odd is that they say it is most visible in front of bright blue, for example the sky. Whereas what I think is that people are habituated to "gazing" at the sky, and in this state the squiggly balls become visible, and so it just works with any old blue light from that.
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby Kenshou » Tue May 11, 2010 2:22 am

Yeah, I get what you're saying. Tuning the eyes as if one is looking at something distant, combined with the right amount of light, seems to make those little sparkles visible for some reason. I can "summon" them at will in enough light after learning the right way to focus. Useless but mildly entertaining if you're stuck and bored somewhere where the sky is visible.

Once, before meditating, I sat on my little cusion and did some preliminary settling, eyes open. This seemed to naturally focus my gaze in the right way, and the room I meditate in has a large window and it was sunny, and so the sparklies kicked in all of a sudden, everywhere. Didn't know what the hell was going on.
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby acinteyyo » Tue May 11, 2010 4:26 pm

Cool! I noticed this "Scheerer's phenomenon" long time ago but now I finally know what it is. I thought it was Visual Snow but that "blue field phenomenon thing" matches exactely.
:thanks: :twothumbsup:
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

:anjali:
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby PeterB » Tue May 11, 2010 4:42 pm

Another similar phenomenon..i.e a natural process that we can suddenly become aware of, is the sound of the blood travelling through the ear canals..Its a quiet high pitched hum. And like "floaters" and "blue fielders " once you become aware of it ( which is much more likely when withdrawing attention from the external world ) you can switch attention to it at will. You can even use it as a meditation object.
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Re: movements in field of vision

Postby Kenshou » Tue May 11, 2010 7:19 pm

How would you suggest using it as a meditation object, Peter?

I've got that sound going quite often, for as long as I can remember. I've always figured that it was simply tinnitus. Luckily I'm used to it, so I don't notice much it unless I intentionally tune into it, but I do notice that in meditation it becomes more prominent, which isn't that surprising. But I've never found it particularly useful.
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