Sharon Salzberg
Best-Selling Author, Teacher of Buddhist Practices, Co-Founder of Insight Meditation Society

Born in New York City in 1952, Sharon Salzberg attended her first intensive meditation course in 1971 in Bodh Gaya, India. She spent the next years engaged in intensive study with highly respected meditation teachers. She returned to America in 1974 and began teaching vipassana (insight) meditation. In 1976, she established, together with Joseph Goldstein and Jack Kornfield, the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, Massachusetts, which now ranks as one of the most prominent and active meditation centers in the Western world. She expanded her vision in 1989 by co-founding the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies (BCBS).


Today she leads teaches a variety of offerings around the globe. Sharon resides in Barre, Massachusetts, and New York City. Sharon has also emerged as a featured speaker and teacher at a wide variety of events. She served as a panelist with the Dalai Lama and leading scientists at the 2005 Mind and Life Investigating the Mind Conference in Washington, DC.


She is the author of nine books including the New York Times bestseller Real Happiness, her seminal work, LovingkindnessReal Happiness At Work, and, most recently, Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection. Renowned for her down-to-earth teaching style, Sharon Salzberg offers a secular, modern approach to Buddhist teachings, making them instantly 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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Mindfulness To Heal Ourselves and the World
Flatiron Books

From one of most prominent figures in the field of meditation comes a guidebook for how to use mindfulness to build our inner strength, find balance, and help create a better world. Whether you're resolving conflicts with a crochety neighbor or combating global warming, Real Change will help guide you with the fundamental principles and mindfulness practices that will lead to the clarity and confidence that lets us lift a foot and take our next step into a better world.

The Art of Mindful Connection
Flatiron Books

Real Love is a creative tool kit of mindfulness exercises and meditation techniques that help you to truly engage with your present experience and create deeper love relationships with yourself, your partner, friends and family, and with life itself.

Sharon Salzberg, a leading expert in Lovingkindness meditation, encourages us to strip away layers of negative habits and obstacles, helping us to experience authentic love based on direct experience, rather than preconceptions. Across three sections, Sharon explains how to dispel cultural and emotional habits, and direct focused care and attention to recapture the essence of what it is to love and be loved.

Lovingkindness In the Face of Adversity Lovingkindness——the literal translation of the Buddhist metta——is not something simpering, saccharine, weak, or foolish. It is, Sharon argues, actually a quality full of tremendous strength. In this talk, Sharon explores the power of lovingkindness when facing physical challenges, illness, emotional upheaval, negativity from others, and what we perceive to be unfair treatment.
Real Happiness at Work Thousands of years prove it, and Western science backs it: Meditation sharpens focus. But meditation also opens the door to real and accessible happiness. Each of us has a genuine capacity for love, forgiveness, wisdom, and compassion; in this talk, Sharon explains how meditation awakens these qualities so that we can discover for ourselves the unique happiness that is our birthright.
Transform Your Mind, Change the World In this talk, Sharon investigates the possibilities of happiness——not as something superficial or happy-go-lucky, but as a tremendous inner resource that gives us the opportunity to care about others as well as ourselves. By transforming our minds, we bless our work with a unique energy, an energy that can be a powerful force for good in the world.

Read Sharon’s op-ed in The Hill on “How We Can Find Faith Amid the Despair.”

Read an excerpt of Real Love featured on

Watch how Sharon’s Lovingkindness meditation can bring you more happiness on ABC News.

Read about Sharon’s insight into happiness at work in Forbes.

See Sharon’s work in “Meditation for Strivers” in the New Yorker.

See Real Love included on Psychology Today‘s list of “7 Must-Read Books to Change Your Life This Summer.”

Read Sharon’s work as a contributor to the Huffington Post.

See Sharon’s work referenced in the Wall Street Journal on happiness at work.

Learn from Sharon how to find real love in Lifehacker.

Read Sharon’s article on S.N. Goenka in the Daily Beast.

Read Sharon’s article on cleaning and stress reduction in the New York Times.

Read an experiment Sharon conducted in Men’s Health.

Learn more about Sharon Salzberg on her website and follow her on Twitter.

Praise for Real Love

"If I had to describe Sharon Salzberg’s work in only two words, they might be: 'only connect.' If there were only one word, that would be even easier: 'love.' In Real Love, one of the world’s leading authorities on love tells us how to find it, how to nurture it, how to honor it―and most of all how to rethink it. Salzberg shows us how to experience love not as an emotion, not as the byproduct of a particular romantic or familial relationship, but as an ability, that all of us can cultivate. This book has the power to set your heart at peace.”
―Susan Cain, author of Quiet

"Sharon Salzberg is an amazing teacher, and her words and inspiration in Real Love illuminate the way to love wisely, a treasure for your heart."
―Jack Kornfield, author of A Path With Heart

"This expert's guidebook cuts deftly through layers of modern confusion to the core of what it means to love and be loved. Salzberg has penned a treasure-house of practical tools and rituals mined from her own tenure mending wounded hearts in the trenches of human relationships. This book offers up frank practical stories and wisdom about love, communication, and relationships indispensable to all."
―Amanda Palmer

"Writing with compassion and keen insight Real Love opens the heart, helping everyone understand love as revolutionary spiritual practice."
―bell hooks