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A Weekend with Meir

Meir Schneider is a modern magican. In his moving autobiographical book, « Self Healing, my life and vision », Schneider recounts his successful efforts to overcome his blindness. Declared legally blind by an israeli ophthalmologist, after 5 unsuccesful eye operations, Meir learned Braille. Blind, only able to see some vague light, Meir at 17 met a sixteen year old kid named Issac in Israel, where Schneider's family had immigrated from Russia. An elderly women named Miriam, who owned a bookstore where Meir obtained books for his beloved grandmother Sava, introduced Meir to Issac.

Issac, who had improved his vision by the Bates method, offered to show the blind youth how to see. "You will be able to see in one year", Issac told Meir. That same day Schneider started to parm, the key exercise of the method. In spite of the discouragement of many family members, he persisted and in a year Meir was able to see a litlle.

On a smaller scale, I had known Meir's trip well. I had to reach 52 before even found out about the mere possibility that vision could improve when Rebekah Crown lent me the Art of Seeing by Aldous Huxley in the middle of a massage I was receiving from her. Saying to myself, "if Huxley could improve his vision, so could I". I began the Bates' exercises that same evening. Within a week I took off my glasses to read for the first time in 40 years. In spite of derision from my father and condescension from almost everyone else, my vision has improved vastly in the seven years since began my trip to better vision. I started with Bates and as I progressed I used more modern vision improvement methods. Wearing bifocals of 8.5 diopeters at that time, my vision had improved to such a point that when I met Meir my glasses were at 3.5 diopeters. So, even before I met him, Schneider was my brother.

When I heard of Meir's workshop in Toronto, I registered immediately.

We were about 25. We had come from Toronto and other cities in Eastern Canada and the United States, all drawn by the magic of Meir. We had different ailments we wanted help with. I wanted further vision improvement; others had arthritis , posture problems, an american dentist had some ailment I had never heard of which caused him pain in his feet and one women had multiple sclerosis. After all, in his book Meir claims to have helped people to heal themselves of multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy and other supposedly, in the medical world's, incurable diseases so it was natural that they came. Some others came with no ailments to overcome, but only to meet the legendary healer.

Meir began by saying that most degenerative diseases are caused by stress. He showed us how to relax by improving our breathing. He said that we have 600 muscles in the body but regularly use only 50 and he showed us how to strengthen our delicate sphincter muscles. "The overuse of the 50 muscles and the non use of the 550 create endemic imbalance. Let's try to use muscles we neglect".

The first attempt was outdoors outside a barren field where there was a sign at one end. Meir asked us, at first, to walk backwards, and then, after we had overcome our fears, to run backwards. I had never done this before and I was scared. However, when I first began to walk backwards, to my amazement, the number 360 on the sign in front of me became clearer. Dumbfoonded, I began to laugh hysterically. What had happened was, that at first, by overcoming my fear of walking backward into the unknown and by activating, for the first time, these muscles used to walk and run backwards, I had attained an instant vision improvement so great that, up to a point, it compensated for the greater distance between my eyes and the number on the sign as I distance myself from it in this unprecedented manner.

Meir showed us unique massages. One very helpful was tapping gently on the bones. He also showed us some exercises for vision improvement that I had previously used frequently such as palming, sunning, blinking end edging. "To self heal we must embrace change". ..."Most people are scared of change".

The Meir Schneider weekend workshop was organized by the Canadian Natural Health Society of Toronto. Hélène Roussel, office manager of the Society, who had met Schneider twice before said: "There are no problems for Meir, only solutions".

I agree wholeheartedly. Over the years I have taken many workshops for vision improvement and many ones for less specific purposes. So I can compare them.

Schneider's was in a class of its own. It is his eclecticism, his total mind body approach, his optimism and spirituality, his modesty and humour, the variety of his techniques and his absolute originality that make Meir a great healer. He is a specialist of the impossible and a poet of healing: the Everest of new age healers.

I measure my words and I am not prone to exageration. On the second day of the workshop I began to get headaches when I put on my undercorrected glasses. It appeared to me that they had now become too strong.

So, shortly after returning home to Montreal I visited my optometrist. After sitting down and reading the eye chart in front of me, the optometrist exclaimed: "This is amazing, you are unique". He noted that I was now able to read letters two lines lower on the eye chart than I could at my last visit in September, probably a visual improvement in such a short time never previously seen by him. He lowered my subscription from 3.5 to a still undercorrected 2.75 diopeters. My vision had improved over 15% in 3 days through Meir's workshop which wasn't even primarily about vision improvement. Haleluya. Thanks Meir. I will never forget you.

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Montreal, November 5, 1993.

By Robert Silverman.

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© Robert Silverman 2000