What is Iridology?

A little while ago I came across an interesting field of study: Iridology. A friend of mine had studied it and got certified in it, and offered to do a reading for me. I was my typical scientifically skeptical self. How could my iris possibly show the state of my health in my body or anything being out of whack? It could probably show an eye injury or any problems with my lenses, but certainly nothing internal? This just seemed like a complete woo-woo science and waste of time.

But I’m always open to new things so I took pictures of both my irises per her instructions, sent them to her and received a surprisingly thorough iris report a couple of days later. And boy was I surprised! She had picked up on my cervical neck issues, my chronic sinus infections, my knee surgery, and some other things that really surprised me. For example, I had been dealing with some thyroid and adrenal issues that medical doctors hadn’t even picked up on. The iridologist could tell me the state my organs were in, areas of acute and chronic inflammation and some of the havoc that my recent Epstein-Barr-infection had left behind.

I was more than impressed and soon started reading up on Iridology. I decided to study it as well and got myself certified. Every iris report I now create excites and sometimes still surprises me for its accuracy and detail. My friends and clients always confirm my findings, and they are just as blown away by those reports as I was about mine.

What is Iridology?

Iridology is a method to assess one’s state of health by specific colors, marks and signs in the iris of the eyes as well as the pupil and sclera. The iris of the eye is a map where each place represents a different organ or system.

In Iridology we apply "holistic health". We view the body as a whole rather than only as specific parts. Our cells, organs and body systems interact together, not separately. When one organ is not functioning well, the whole body is affected.

Practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) believe that one part of the body can affect other organs and tissues on the same energy paths. It is believed that all the energy paths of the body pass through different sections of the eyes, and specifically through the colored part of the eye known as the iris.

Iridology reveals physiological conditions, psychological health risks and strengths and weaknesses of various organs.

It generally reveals the state of the organs and body systems but not any particular disease. While specialized modern medicine often focuses on a specific area and the root of the problem remains, iridologists view the body holistically - they don't treat just a symptom - and tackle the root of the problem.

When I do readings for clients, I ask them to take pictures of both irises and send them to me (an iris reading can be done remotely). I show them exactly how to take the picture so that it’s sharp and shows a detailed image of the iris and the sclera (the white part around it). It typically takes about 2 hours to create a thorough iris report by hand. There is automated software available but I like to produce a report by hand because it is often more thorough. Sometimes there are unwanted reflections in the iris images and the software often gives a false reading on those (it misinterprets reflections as areas of inflammation). Sometimes I run an automated report in addition to the manual report and compare the two for correct and possibly additional information.

The history of Iridology

Examining the eyes for clues to health is not new. Hippocrates (460 BC-377 BC) the so-called Father of Medicine, did this some 2400 years ago. In the late 1600s, iridology had become at least a recognized diagnostic tool.

In the late 1800s, several Europeans made far greater associations and correlations between the markings of the iris and current or potential health problems, and the science of Iridology evolved tremendously.

A Hungarian doctor, Ignatz von Peczely (1822-1911), discovered his lifelong interest in iridology at only age 11. At that time, he had accidentally broken an owl’s leg and, looking into the owl’s eye, he noticed a black mark appear. He made a splint and nursed the owl back to health, and he noticed that the black mark changed to a white mark over a period of time. Dr. von Peczely became a medical doctor and created the first chart of the iris, mapping eye markings to specific organs. Many of his observations came from observing patients in a hospital before and after surgery. After several decades of comparative study, he published his theories in his first book in 1881.

In the late 1800s, another European, a Swedish minister named Nils Liljequist (1851-1936), made a correlation between a drug he was taking (quinine) and a yellow-green discoloration of his eye.

In the 1950s, Dr. Bernard Jensen (1908-2001), an American chiropractor, took iridology to an advanced level, and is called the Father of Iridology in the United States. He had earlier received a diploma in the “Science of Iridology” in San Francisco. Later on, he “mapped” the eye far more extensively than had been done earlier. He worked with over 300,000 patients, students and physicians. He founded Iridologists International in 1977. His son and daughter-in-law are carrying on his work.