“Do the good that’s in front of you, even if it feels very small.”
– Sharon Salzberg
Sharon Salzberg (@SharonSalzberg) is a central figure in the field of meditation, a world-renowned teacher, and New York Times bestselling author.
Sharon has played a crucial role in bringing meditation and mindfulness practices to the West and into mainstream culture since 1974, when she first began teaching. She is the co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA, and she has written ten books — from her seminal Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness to her latest, Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection.
Sharon offers a secular and modern approach to Buddhist teachings, making them more accessible. She is a regular columnist for On Being, a contributor to Huffington Post, and the host of her own podcast: The Metta Hour.
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Want to hear another podcast about meditation? In this episode, we hear from Chase Jarvis as he explains his top priorities for feeling fulfilled. I talk transcendental meditation with Arnold Schwarzenegger. And I cover a wide spectrum with Sam Harris, and ask him about everything from hallucinogens to meditation techniques (stream below or right-click here to download):
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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.
Scroll below for links and show notes…
Selected Links from the Episode
- Connect with Sharon Salzberg:
- Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection by Sharon Salzberg
- Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg
- Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness by Sharon Salzberg
- The Tim Ferriss Radio Hour: Meditation, Mindset, and Mastery
- Naropa University
- Shambhala Publications
- The Pretense of Accident: Yearning, Not Gripping, for Happiness by Sharon Salzberg, On Being
- Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ by Daniel Goleman
- Bodh Gaya
- Guided Meditation — “Loving Kindness” by Tara Brach
- Spirit Rock
- Rick And Morty
- Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction: What it Is, How it Helps by Will Baum, Psychology Today
- Everyday Compassion at Google by Chade-Meng Tan at TEDPrize@UN
- The Jar of Awesome and Celebrating Small Wins with CreativeLive
- When Goodwill is Better than Love: The Meaning of “Metta.” by Thanissaro Bhikkhu, Lion’s Roar
- Should We All Take a Bit of Lithium? by Anna Fels, The New York Times
- Faith: Trusting Your Own Deepest Experience by Sharon Salzberg
- Sharon tells us about the string of experiences early in her life that helped chart her course. [07:02]
- How did Buddhism enter Sharon’s life? What impact did it have on the suffering she had known since such an early age? [10:31]
- What priceless guidance did Sharon receive from Buddhist meditation master Chˆgyam Trungpa before traveling to India? [13:09]
- Sharon explains how this guidance played out during her travels. [14:44]
- How Emotional Intelligence author Daniel Goleman helped Sharon find her way. [15:57]
- What happened when Sharon went to Bodh Gaya. [17:07]
- Sharon’s advice for anyone going into an intensive ten-day silent retreat. [18:46]
- How would Sharon guide a room full of type A personalities who are convinced meditation won’t “work” for them? [21:50]
- Mental frameworks helpful for beginners to keep in mind as they’re trying to establish meditation as a regular practice. [24:58]
- Self-compassion as a secret ingredient. [27:11]
- Does Sharon believe there’s a “minimum effective dose” when it comes to meditation? [28:55]
- For a beginner, what would the format of twenty minutes of daily meditation look like? [32:22]
- Have I been practicing what Sharon considers loving kindness? [35:25]
- Reframing the lens through which we look at our daily experiences. [39:47]
- How does Sharon suggest we think about the word “love” at a time when it’s almost lost its meaning through overuse? [42:04]
- How can someone defuse or divert a drift toward anger? [45:15]
- Why you may want to avoid email if you’re trying a fast for the first time. [48:10]
- On self-assessment after meditation (or medication) has become part of one’s routine. [48:37]
- Some love is 50/50. Here’s a story where it’s 100/100. [54:17]
- How does Sharon define success? [56:51]
- What are Sharon’s biggest challenges at the moment? [58:53]
- How does Sharon make progress with her own desired behavior changes? [1:01:20]
- Overcoming a time of despair and reestablishing connection. [1:01:49]
- Do the good that’s in front of you. [1:06:01]
- Gautama Buddha
- Chˆgyam Trungpa
- Dalai Lama
- Daniel Goleman
- Satya Narayan Goenka
- Jack Kornfield
- Tsoknyi Rinpoche
- Richard Davidson
- Jon Kabat-Zinn
- Chade-Meng Tan
- Ebenezer Scrooge
- Rainer Maria Rilke
- Albert Einstein
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