January 11, 2013

Meir Schneider

2010-05-26 12.44.31Born Blind

Meir Schneider Ph.D. 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 who gave him hope that his dream of seeing could be realized. The boy taught him the Bates Method of eye exercises. Undeterred by the opposition and skepticism of family and physicians, Meir practiced these exercises with extreme diligence – up to 13 hours per day. Using the Bates Method as his foundation, he developed many more eye exercises of his own and created his own regimen of self-massage and movement.

Awakening Your Power of Self Healing

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Meir Schneider’s new book, Awakening Your Power for Self Healing, contains a wealth of knowledge on stress reduction, healthy living, holistic health, and treatments for specific ailments and diseases. There is truly nothing comparable on the market. If you are serious about taking control of your own health, learning how to improve your body, and develop practical, easy habits for a longer, happier life, his book will be a lifelong friend.

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 by holding the paper a few inches from his nose.  Today, Meir currently holds an unrestricted California driver’s license, and his vision continues to improve! Originally seeing at 20/2000 (able to see from one foot what a normally sighted person sees from 100 feet), he now sees 20/70 (70% of normal vision)!

Meir instructing a Natural Vision Improvement Workshop at the Center for Self-Healing in San Francisco

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

Meir Schneider Sharing his Vision with Others

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. In addition, because of the surgeries, his eyes were full of scar tissue. Doctors told him he would never see. Despite this Meir remained diligent in his exercises. 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 conditions seem to be unrelated, Meir’s belief in their ability of his patients to recover, and his 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. In his quest for self-improvement, Meir discovered that the same principles by which he gained functional vision could also be applied to the entire body. Therefore, he added his own regimen of self-massage and movement to complement the visual exercises and developed a new pathway to overall health.

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, a non-medical, holistic health rehabilitation and prevention system. It trains us to use muscles and joints in a balanced way by isolating muscle groups, relaxing chronically overused muscles, stimulating brain-body neural connections, and—most importantly—enhancing circulation and has helped tens of thousands of people with serious physical and visual conditions worldwide. 

An internationally respected therapist and educator, Meir Schneider is the founder and director of the School for Self-Healing in San Francisco, the author of:

  • Vision For Life: 10 Steps to Natural Eyesight Improvement (2nd edition book) (Buy Here)
    and Companion DVD (Buy Here)
  • The Natural Vision Improvement Kit (Buy Here)
  • Movement for Self-Healing (Buy Here)
  • Yoga for Your Eyes (Buy Here)
  • Meir Schneider’s Miracle Eyesight Method (Buy Here)
  • Self-Healing: My Life and Vision
  • and the principal author of The Handbook of Self-Healing (Buy Here)

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. As a healthcare visionary, pioneer therapist, international health educator, and 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

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 20/70.

A normal eye dilated. The black area is the lens, all of which admits light.

Teaching and Speaking

Meir demonstrating the stregth of his back with students

Meir demonstrating the strength of his back with students

Meir travels the world and has taught in many places. In March 2014 he was invited to Singapore and Taiwan by Lapis Lazuli Light, a very well known holistic organization . Meir goes frequently to Israel, and last fall, he toured Spain, Italy, Black Forest in Germany, Czechia, Portugal, and the United Kingdom spreading his message of hope and rejuvenation.

Teaching Engagements in U.S. include

  • Ongoing training classes in the Meir Schneider Method of Self-Healing through Bodywork and Movement; training classes for Natural Vision Improvement Educators, specialized workshops and retreats: Yoga For the Eyes, Movement for Self-Healing, Overcoming Repetitive Strain Injuries, Overcome Spine Problems and Build a Healthy Back; School for Self-Healing (SFSH), San Francisco, CA
  • Ongoing Healing Workshops across the nation, and around the world.  Common workshop themes are Natural Vision Improvement, Massage, and Self-Healing Through Movement. Most popular destinations are California (where we are located), New York, Washington DC, Maryland, Canada, Brazil, Portugal, Israel, United Kingdom and Germany.
  • Ongoing Public Service lectures: Natural Vision Improvement , Movement for Self-Healing, Wellness in the Workplace throughout the SF Bay Area- hospitals, bookstores, schools, libraries, patient support groups, spas
  • Esalen Institute, annual Awaken Your Power to Create Health and Vitality workshops, Big Sur, CA,  annual workshops, Big Sur, CA


  • California Institute for Integral Studies, classes on natural vision improvement and building a healthy back
  • National and State Conferences of the American Massage Therapy Association, presentations on Natural Vision Improvement, Overcoming Paralysis and Spine problems, Overcoming Repetitive Strain Injury
  • The North American Conference(s) on Natural Vision Improvement, Keynote speaker; co-sponsor with the University of San Francisco
  • University of California at San Francisco Medical Center, annual Natural Vision Improvement workshops for faculty and students

International Teaching Engagements include

  • Meir teaching at the School for Self-Healing

    Meir teaching at the School for Self-Healing

    Brazil– Ongoing trainings in Meir Schneider Method of Self-Healing through Bodywork and Movement; Training classes for Natural Vision Improvement Educators; lectures and workshops for ophthalmologists and physiotherapists and other professionals, as well as for the public, annually since 1993

  • Israel– Workshops and trainings annually since 1986
  • United Kingdom– Workshops and trainings annually since 1988
  • Germany and Portugal, International Conferences of Holistic Vision, Keynote presentations
  • Mexico, Australia, Canada, Curacao, Germany, Hungary and Portugal: Lectures and workshops

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