Brace yourselves, this is going to be wild.
So, I recently watched Neil deGrasse Tyson’s MasterClass on Scientific Thinking and Communication. It made me realise a few things.
To tell you the truth, I wasn’t sceptical at all about Endmyopia. I just submitted all my trust to the almighty Jake Steiner @jakey which could easily be a double-edged sword on my part: I could have just fallen as easily for Mark Warren’s Myopia is Mental which one could argue is equally scientifically convincing to the laypeople. I guess it was fate or something that I ended up here, hehe.
Someone in the Facebook group linked to a Dr Por Yong Ming’s response to a Quora question about the reliability of Endmyopia. I know, you might squirm at the very mention of Quora. But this one kinda strikes me. Even though I disagree with a lot of what he says, I must agree with the fact that Endmyopia lacks scientific evidence, is full of testimonies and anecdotes, and is based from assumptions.
Mainstream science will probably never accept Endmyopia unless convincing, scientific evidence is given. As of now, most of our ‘evidence’ are testimonial and anecdotal: we give our prescription history and say we reduced x amount of dioptres in x years. For some of us (myself included), that’s enough evidence to convince us this method has truth behind it.
However, from a scientist’s point of view, this wouldn’t suffice. I mean, I can easily say I’ve reduced -1.00 dioptre over the past year, but that’s a testimony. Jake Steiner reduced -5.00 myopia, but what does that mean anything to scientists or those medical scums – uh, I mean, professionals? Where’s the evidence? They want to see DATA. They want to see how Jake’s axial length changed over that -5.00 drop, how his cycloplegic refractions changed as he released his ciliary spasm. Do we have any of that?
In the MasterClass, Neil talked about scepticism: ‘A proper sceptic questions what they are unsure of but recognises when valid evidence is presented to change their mind.’
I must admit the doctor is not in absolute denial as to there being any possibility of reversing myopia. His scepticism is quite made obvious as he states: ‘show me measurements of cycloplegic refractions and axial length changes throughout, then I will endorse this method’.
That is the truth. We DON’T have any proof that Endmyopia works. I’ve read some papers that have proven axial reduction but they are only identifying short-term changes of axial length. No one has ever tested the effects of long-term exposure to very minimal myopic defocus enhanced through active focus on axial length. Have we? No, we ASSUMED it would work based on our research – it is a hypothesis unproven. I mean, we don’t even have concrete proof that active focus exists.
Can Endmyopia really become mainstream without proper data and evidence? We are constantly attacked by doctors and professionals (with varying degrees of salt and denial) and unless we do have evidence that this works, it will be an unfading onslaught that brings us down to no more than a weird internet cult.
I’m biased towards Endmyopia, of course. I wouldn’t have written this if I am otherwise. I believe that it is the OBJECTIVE TRUTH that myopia is nothing more than a healthy eye responding to stimuli, and hence can be reversed.
But what will it take to distil the agitated waters of vision science with all its misconstrued ideas and political biases? What will it take for us to be ever-present in the media? starring in interviews, speaking in lecture halls, in schools, in ministries? to perhaps expose and reshape the invisible totalitarianism we face against the optometry industry?
What will it take?