Can a false or feather edge serve a purpose.
The back and forth strokes are the most common stroke used with tools and knives, and many razor honers do also use back and forth. This is a stroke that can be very good for you if you master it, so the stroke itself is not a negative issue. I use the back and forth strokes for plane blades, chisels, but for the final finishing I use edge leading strokes in order to reduce the development of a false edge.
My thinking and understanding is that when when two sides of a blade meet in perfect geometry the edge looks like a V , when they form a false edge it looks like a Y and a dull edge looks like a U . In my shop I will take a blade that is dull, develop a false edge on purpose, and then remove the false edge to create a sharp edge. So my sequence looks like U-Y-V.
When I hone a razor or chisel I try to create a Y profile because the tail of the Y is proof that the two sides have met each other. Then I take that Y shape, remove the tail and I am left with a V shape which I consider to be perfect geometry.
In my studies I have found that on a high quality Awasedo with slurry a forward edge leading stroke will quickly remove the feather like false edge with just the first few strokes. To add more strokes on the slurry stone is not better and here is the reason why. A stone with slurry builds a wave of slurry in front of the blade (front of edge in edge leading strokes—-front of spine in spine leading strokes) and this slurry has thickness and great cutting powers.
The thickness of the wave and the concentration of the slurry component will abrade and slightly convex the bevel beginning at the edge before and with less influence back away from the edge with edge leading strokes. In other words the blade at the edge is more directly affected by the slurry first and before the rest of the bevel is affected. This makes the blade slightly convex and the edge. The more strokes you add with slurry the rounder the blade gets, so when you go to your clear water stage the bevel is not flat anymore and the edge sits ever so slightly a little bit above the stone.
If the edge is sitting above the stone when you use the clear water strokes technique, this will begin to reduce this curvature and eventually the blades edge will touch the stone as the bevels becomes flat again. The trick here is to know, or to be able to feel or see that exact moment when the bevel is flat again and as the edge begins to touch the stone. At this point in the sequence the geometry is acute and depending on the abrasive, and your technique the edge will be as sharp as it will get from that stone. Going next to a strop can add refinement too but if you final edge retained some areas of the false edge this edge can be slightly dull after the false edge is broken or abrade off.
Forward edge leading strokes reduce the area or band width of feather/false edge, spine leading strokes promote the width of the false edge, back and forth strokes do both. With the very last stone, just before you strop your razor I suggest that you do edge leading strokes only because they reduce the formation of a false edge and promote direct contact between steel and stone.
I suggest that you, with purpose, build an excellent and useful false edge with perfect geometry, and then manipulate your technique with slurry as your secret agent, the surgical removal of that false edge without overdoing it. If you can do this, in the end you are left with an edge of solid steel that represents your perfect geometrically designed razors edge.