My name is Nathan Oxenfeld and I wore lenses for over a decade before normalizing my vision using the Bates Method. I was prescribed my first pair of glasses at the age of ten in third grade for myopia (nearsightedness) and was fitted for contacts shortly thereafter. I relied on corrective lenses from the moment I woke up until just before going to sleep. It did not take long for me to tire of the daily nuisance of putting in contacts or wearing glasses. Slowly but surely a desire grew in the back of my mind: to wake up with crystal clear vision without using artificial lenses.

Nathan Craggy smallUnfortunately, the opposite happened. The more I relied on my glasses and contacts, the worse my myopia became. On one visit to the eye doctor to get a stronger pair of glasses I was told I had developed astigmatism. My dream of clear vision seemed to get further and further away from reality. Naturally, I thought the only way to achieve perfect vision was to receive laser eye surgery. I figured as soon as I turned eighteen, the FDA approved age for LASIK refractive surgery, I would have my corneas cut. However, a few people I knew who had the procedure still had to wear glasses! So I decided to wait and see how the technology improved over time. While waiting, I attained a Bachelors Degree from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. It was during this time while studying in university that I became exposed to the alternative side of health and healing through nutrition, yoga, meditation, qigong and the Bates Method of natural vision improvement.

After graduating, I devoted myself more fully to these alternative practices. I became a certified yoga instructor through the Integral Yoga Institute located at Satchidananda Ashram (Yogaville) in Buckingham, Virginia. During this one month of self-study and deep relaxation, I drew several parallels between the ancient path of Yoga and the more recent discoveries of Dr. Bates. There I witnessed a profound improvement in my eyesight while practicing Hatha Yoga every morning, meditating twice a day, eating a wholesome  and simple vegetarian diet, spending lots of time outdoors and less time in front of cell phones and computers. I got a small glimpse of what the Bates Method could do, and I was hungry for more.

Light of Truth Universal Shrine (LOTUS) temple at Satchidananda Ashram

Light of Truth Universal Shrine (LOTUS) temple at Satchidananda Ashram

In search of a healthy community similar to what I experienced at the Ashram, I ventured to the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina and settled in Asheville. I taught Integral Yoga for a year and became interested in Qigong. Several similarities began to present themselves between Qigong and the Bates Method and I soon realized that all healing practices hint toward one thing: Relaxation. As Swami Satchidananda said, “Truth is One, Paths are Many.” An incredible urge surfaced to become a Bates Method Teacher to help as many other people reclaim their birthright of clear and comfortable eyesight, just as I did myself.

I became a Certified Bates Method Teacher in 2013 after training under Dr. Jerriann J. Taber Ph.D. who is in direct teaching lineage of Dr. Bates himself. Dr. Taber founded the Vision Training Institute in El Cajon, California and has been teaching the Bates Method for over forty years helping thousands of people improve vision. Not only do my teachings have the solid foundation of the original Bates Method as passed down by Dr. Bates, but I also complement them with aspects of the authentic Yoga as passed down by Sri Swami Satchidananda. Qigong, Meditation, Breathwork, Reiki and other healing modalities are also applied when appropriate. Every pair of eyes is unique and have a unique path to clarity. I help people carve their own individual path and discover the miracle of self-healing through relaxation, awareness and intention. 

nateyogabeach

Leading a sunrise yoga class on Ocean Isle Beach, NC. Summer 2011