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Alternative Healing

Exercises to improve eyesight (Meir Schneider)

By  | 
Meir Schneider, PhD, LMT

Born Blind

Meir was born blind to deaf parents in 1954 because of congenital cataracts. After five unsuccessful surgeries on the lenses of his eyes, which left him with massive scar tissue, glaucoma, cataracts, cross-sightedness and nystagmus (involuntary rapid eye movement), his doctors pronounced his condition hopeless and he was certified permanently legally blind. He performed his reading and schoolwork in Braille. Inside, he never relinquished his dream of gaining sight. Just months before his seventeenth birthday, Meir met a teenage boy, a high school dropout, who gave him hope that his dream of seeing could be realized. He taught him the Bates Method of eye exercises.  He practiced them with a diligence that probably no one had ever applied to them before, up to 13 hours a day, undeterred by the opposition and skepticism of family and physicians. Using the Bates Method as his foundation he developed many more eye exercises never heard of and created his own regimen of self-massage and movement and eventually the seven principals of natural vision improvement that he writes about in his book, Vision For Life.

Learning to See

Within six months of starting the exercises, he could recognize visual objects for the first time in his life; within 18 months, he could read print without glasses, holding the paper a few inches from his nose.  Today, he holds a current unrestricted California driver’s license, and his vision continues to improve. From 20/2000 (able to see from one foot what a normally sighted person sees from 100 feet) to 20/60 (70% of normal vision)!

Sharing his Vision with Others

Meir teaching Natural Vision Improvement at the Center for Self-Healing

A normally sighted baby’s visual brain develops between the ages of eight weeks and three years.  Because of Meir’s cataracts this part of his brain was not given the chance to develop. On top of this, because of the surgeries, his eyes were full of scar tissue and doctors all told him he would never see. Despite this Meir remained diligent in his exercises and during his recovery process, while still a teenager, Meir began to help others with their vision problems and with a wide range of degenerative conditions, such as polio, muscular dystrophy and multiple sclerosis.  Although the exercises are completely different with those conditions his belief in their ability to recover and a new outlook helped him to develop exercises that had never been tried before. He found that the same principles, which enabled him to gain functional eyesight, could be applied to the entire body. His unique approach and the unprecedented success led to his discoveries and to the creation of Meir Schneider Method of Self-Healing through Bodywork and Movement, helping tens of thousands of people with serious physical and visual conditions worldwide. An internationally respected therapist and educator, Meir is the founder and director of the School for Self-Healing in San Francisco, the author of The Natural Vision Improvement Kit, Movement for Self-Healing, Yoga for Your Eyes, Meir Schneider’s Miracle Eyesight Method, Self-Healing: My Life and Vision and the principal author of The Handbook of Self-Healing.  He was awarded a PhD in the Healing Arts for his work with muscular dystrophy. In 2007 Meir was honored by Israel, named as one of the  “Top Ten Most Inspirational Israelis” worldwide. In the fall of 2010 Meir was honored by then San Francisco Mayor, Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, with a Certificate of Honor for his tireless efforts and a lifetime dedicated to improving the quality of life for individuals with both visual and physical limitations. Healthcare visionary, pioneer therapist, international health educator, author, Meir continues to develop his unique therapeutic healthcare system providing solutions for a variety of physical and visual disorders often considered beyond medical help.

Meir’s unrestricted California Driver License
This is Meir Schneider’s blindness certificate. Issued in 1970 in Tel Aviv, it is marked “Valid Permanently”
Meir’s right eye, with maximum dilation. Less than 1% of the lens area admits light; the rest is scar tissue and membrane. Making the best possible use of badly damaged eyes, Meir sees about 20/80.
A normal eye dilated. The black area is the lens, all of which admits light.

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