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history of iridology

What Is Iridology?

history of iridology 2Proponents of iridology claim that information about the patient’s overall health—including healthy or unhealthy organs, past andfuture health issues, and susceptibility to certain illnesses/diseases—can be gleaned from the study of the patterns, colors, and other characteristics of the patient’s iris.Flashlights, magnifying glasses, cameras, and slit-lamp microscopes are used to examine the patient’s irises. Iridologists look for tissue changes, specific pigment patterns,irregularstromal architecture (the stroma is the outermost layer of the iris), and more. Charts dividing the iris into 80-90 sections, each corresponding to a bodily system, are used to determine whether the system indicated by a given iris section is healthy, inflamed, or distressed. According to iridologists, changes to specific details of the iris correspond to changes in internal organs.

However, as the features of the iris are among the most stable parts of the human body history of iridology 1from birth to death, and as quality research studies and supportive clinical data on iridology are wholly nonexistent, the practice has long been considered pseudoscience. Iridology is and never has been regulated or licensed by any American governmental agency, and—somehow—numerous organizations offering certification in the practice still exist today.

history of iridology picture

history of iridology

Ignatz von Peczely- ‘Father’ of Iridology

The first record in history of the eyes being a mapping to containing information about the body, is from the book “Chiromatica Medica.” The book described how the top part of the iris represents the head, and the lower part represents the kidneys, spleen, and genital organs.

A few other publications had been made, but it was not until the early 1800’s that Iridology had it’s official beginning in the modern era.

Ignatz von Peczely, born in Hungary in 1826, who at the age of 11 accidentally broke the leg of an owl while attempting to let it free from his garden. He noticed that in the lower part of the owl’s eye there appeared a black stripe. After he splinted the owl’s leg and allowed a period of time for it to heal, white lines appeared where the dark line had been before.

The bird stayed with him in the garden for several years where he had time to notice the changes that occurred in the iris of the owl’s eye.

This made a lasting impression on the young Peczely and later in his career he had the opportunity to study the eyes of his patients in great detail and was able to confirm his findings by performing several autopsies. He began to look to the eyes as a way to see what was going on with people’s health, and he became quite famous.

In 1880 Von Peczely published his only book called ” Discoveries in the Realms of Nature and Art of Healing,” and in 1886 the first iridology map of the eyes was revealed for the world to see. Today, Ignatz von Peczely is known as the father of Iridology and his studies continue to inspire many great iridologists who have followed his path to our modern history.

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Iridology has been practiced since history has been recorded. According to archaeological data from 3000 years ago in Egypt, China and India there was much attention devoted to the study of the iris and its relation to organs of the body. Silver plates with detailed iris pictures were discovered in the Tutankhamon’s tomb (1400-1392 B.C). In traditional Tibetan medicine, the condition of the eyes was carefully noted by doctors who related markings to liver functioning and blood disorders. It wasn’t until the nineteenth century that the practice started to be investigated in Europe.

In 1867 Ignatz Von Peczely, a Hungarian doctor, qualified in medicine at the Vienna Medical College. His work as a doctor allowed him to study the iris of patients before and after surgery and he systematically recorded his findings, publishing his research in a book entitled ‘Discoveries in the Realms of Nature and the Art of Healing’. He established one of the earliest iris charts linking regions of the iris to organs in the body.

Dr Henry Lane and his student Dr Henry Lindlahr carried out thousands of surgical and autopsy correlation with iris markings before publishing ‘Iridology – The Diagnosis from The Eye’ in 1904.

Dr Bernard Jensen is renowned for his work on developing one of the most widely used iris charts. His passion for natural healing was driven by his own recovery from a medically ‘incurable’ condition at the age of 18, which he then proceeded to resolve using naturopathic treatments. Dr Jensen operated several health sanatoriums in California, receiving many honours and awards over the years including 1982 National Health Federation’s Pioneer Doctor of the Year award. He earned his Ph.D. at the age of 76 climaxing a lifetime of study, work and teaching in the healing arts. He lectured in 55 countries around the world and authored over 40 books on the subjects of natural health care and iridology.

Dorothy Hall was a contemporary of Bernard Jensen and recognised the unique connection between the patterns and colours in the iris and the personality of each individual. In her book ‘Personality and Health Analysis Through the Iris’ she describes how the iris can be classified into structural types by their fibre patterns, each type having its own personality tendencies.

Harri Wolf, M.A., Director of the Institute for Applied Iridology, was an original founder and past-president of International Iridology Practitioners Association (IIPA). He is well known for his charts, training manuals and videos in the field of Applied Iridology. He translated Dr. Lo Rito’s work on ‘time risk,’ the discovery that a trauma or major stress in an individual’s life is recorded at the level of the iris.

Jim Verghis has developed the concept of behavioural iridology. Like fingerprints, every individual iris is unique and provides a visual blueprint of genetic inheritance. He classified the iris into two distinct types. The ‘thinking’ type is characterised by burnt orange to dark brown spots on the iris known as psora. These indicate an activation of the left brain, creating a desire for knowledge and mental stimulation. The emotional type of iris has rounded openings resembling pockets, known as lacuna. These indicate a right brain predominance, which fosters creativity and spontaneous emotion.

history of iridology images

John Andrews is recognised for his research and work in advancing Iridology. He has written several books that underline the potential for iridology to provide greater diagnostic clarity in a clinical setting. His aim is for Iridologists to practice in an accurate way and by repeatable methods to cultivate greater acceptance and spectrum of application. Much of Mr Andrews’ recent research has focused on the Inner Pupillary border of the iris.

In the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, writings and works on Iris markings and their meanings were recorded, mainly by medical practitioners.

One of the earliest was Dr Ignatz von Peczely, a Hungarian Doctor. While still a child he accidentally broke the leg of an owl. He noticed a black mark appearing in the owl’s eye, which over time changed in form and shading.

Ignatz von Peczely qualified in medicine at the Vienna Medical College in 1867. He had ample opportunity to study the irides of patients before and after surgery, systematically recording, correlating and publishing his research in the book ‘Discoveries in the Realms of Nature and Art of Healing’. His ‘Iris Chart’ was established in 1880.

In the 1860’s, a young Swedish boy, Nils Liljequist became ill as the consequence of a vaccination, followed by doses of quinine and iodine. He noticed the changes in colour of his formerly blue eyes, as the drug spots appeared.

In 1870, he published a paper describing his experiences, ‘Quinine and Iodine change the Colour of the Iris’, and in 1893 published ‘Om Oegendiagnosen’, which included his ‘Iris Chart’.

We should not be surprised that Liljequist and von Peczely’s ‘Iris Charts’ were very similar.

Much of the American medical research originated with the work of Dr Henry Edward Lane and his student, Dr Henry  Lindlahr.  Dr Lane carried out most of his surgical and autopsy correlations with Iride markings at the Kosmos Sanitarian in Evanston, Illinois. His book ‘Iridology – The Diagnosis from the Eye’ was published in 1904, in which he states ‘…thousands were examined before just one marking could be considered corroborated.’

Dr J Haskel Kritzer recorded his lifetime of research into Iris diagnosis in his book ‘Iridiagnosis’, soon to be republished by the ‘Holistic Health College’.  His work spurred on Bernard Jensen, a student of Dr Lindlahr, into further research and the development of an updated ‘Iris Chart’ with Dr John R Arnold, founder of the ‘World Iridology Fellowship’.  Dr Arnold was the main instigator in changing the term ‘iridiagnosis’ to ‘iris analysis’, which more accurately reflects that it is a means of analysing ‘conditions within’ rather than specific diseases.

There are many more researchers who deserve acknowledgement: their contributions will be examined in future updates of the web site.

history of iridology -iridology chart

 

 


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