Barre, Massachusetts USA
Foundation of Teaching
Buddhism, Peace, Love, Compassion, Presence, Vipassana Meditation
Example of Teaching
“It is never too late to turn on the light. Your ability to break an unhealthy habit or turn off an old tape doesn’t depend on how long it has been running; a shift in perspective doesn’t depend on how long you’ve held on to the old view.”
Total Views: 6745
Insight Meditation Society
1230 Pleasant Street
Barre, Massachusetts 01005
Born in New York City in 1952, Sharon Salzberg experienced a childhood involving considerable loss and turmoil. An early realization of the power of meditation to overcome personal suffering determined her life direction. Her teaching and writing now communicates that power to a worldwide audience of practitioners. She offers non-sectarian retreat and study opportunities for participants from widely diverse backgrounds.
Sharon first encountered Buddhism in 1969, in an Asian philosophy course at the State University of New York, Buffalo. The course sparked an interest that, in 1970, took her to India, for an independent study program. Sharon traveled motivated by “an intuition that the methods of meditation would bring me some clarity and peace.”
In 1971, in Bodh Gaya, India, Sharon attended her first intensive meditation course. She spent the next years engaged in intensive study with highly respected Buddhist teachers. She returned to America in 1974 and began teaching vipassana (insight) meditation. Today she leads intensive retreats worldwide as well as a variety of non-residential programs, workshops, and classes.
The written word is central to Sharon Salzberg’s teaching and studies. In her early Buddhist studies at the University of Buffalo, she discovered Chogyam Trungpa’s book, “Meditation in Action.” She later heard him speak at a nearby school: he was the first practicing Buddhist she encountered. While studying in India, Shunryu Suzuki’s book “Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind” profoundly influenced the direction of her meditation practice.
She is a regular contributor the the Huffington Post, and was a contributing editor of Oprah’s O Magazine for several years. She has appeared in Time Magazine, Yoga Journal, msnbc.com, Tricycle, Real Simple, Body & Soul, Mirabella, Good Housekeeping, Self, Buddhadharma, More and Shambhala Sun, as well as on a variety of radio programs.
Various anthologies on spirituality have featured Sharon Salzberg and her work, including “Meetings with Remarkable Women,” “Gifts of the Spirit,” “A Complete Guide to Buddhist America,” “Handbook of the Heart,” “The Best Guide to Meditation,” “From the Ashes—A Spiritual Response to the Attack on America,” and “How to Stop the Next War Now: Effective Responses to Violence and Terrorism.”
Articles and Posts
- How to Recognize Your Inner Critic - Sharon Salzbergviews: 406
by Sharon Salzberg: There’s a tiny voice in the back of our minds that plays off our greatest anxieties, giving its dialogue an addictive quality… Here is a guided meditation to help loosen the grip of problematic thought loops that keep us [...]
- Practice Self-Compassion With Forgivenessviews: 524
by Sharon Salzberg: We cannot force ourselves to move on from a painful situation… expecting forgiveness to be quick and voluntary can have negative effects. Explore this mindfulness practice for creating space for ourselves to forgive. We’ve all heard the [...]
- Start with a Flower: Alice Walker & Sharon Salzbergviews: 2074
Moderated by Melvin McLeod: Sharon Salzberg: In speaking about metta practice, or loving-kindness practice, one of the hardest things is not to sentimentalize. That’s especially hard in our society, where the whole idea of love can be degraded and considered a weakness. But [...]
- Why Anxiety Is So Persuasive — and Pervasive: Sharon Salzbergviews: 776
by Sharon Salzberg: A while back, I asked readers to suggest subjects for me to explore in this column, and the immediate request was that I write about anxiety… Most people believe that we live in especially anxious times. Everywhere I teach, [...]
- Why Meditate? - Sharon Salzbergviews: 712
by Sharon Salzberg: Join Sharon Salzberg in February for her eighth annual Real Happiness Meditation Challenge! This free 28-day challenge is powerful exploration of the tools of meditation. Whether you are brand new to meditation, or a longtime practitioner, Sharon [...]
View all Articles and Posts
- Sharon Salzberg The Capacity To Connect To Othersviews: 1457
- Sharon Salzberg And The Buddhist Concept of Metta Or Loving Kindnessviews: 2135
- Universal Compassionviews: 2110
- Sharon Salzberg on Loving Kindnessviews: 2375
- Meditation Practice as Skills Trainingviews: 1724
- Transform Your Mind, Change the World: Sharon Salzberg at TEDxBinghamtonUniversityviews: 1892
View all Videos
- "Life is like an ever-shifting kaleidoscope - a slight change, and all patterns alter."
- "Any ordinary favor we do for someone or any compassionate reaching out may seem to be going nowhere at first, but may be planting a seed we can't see right now. Sometimes we need to just do the best we can and then trust in an unfolding we can't design or ordain."
- "By prizing heartfulness above faultlessness, we may reap more from our effort because we're more likely to be changed by it."
- "Each decision we make, each action we take, is born out of an intention."
- "As I go through all kinds of feelings and experiences in my journey through life -- delight, surprise, chagrin, dismay -- I hold this question as a guiding light: "What do I really need right now to be happy?" What I come to over and over again is that only qualities as vast and deep as love, connection and kindness will really make me happy in any sort of enduring way."
- "If we fall, we don't need self-recrimination or blame or anger - we need a reawakening of our intention and a willingness to recommit, to be whole-hearted once again."