Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection by Sharon Salzberg
We all yearn for connection, yet often feel trapped by our sense of isolation, anger, envy, and other forms of aversion. Ultimately, our minds get in the way of this yearning, as we spin stories and assumptions around in our heads that keep us feeling alienated from one another. However, in Real Love, bestselling author and meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg will teach you to redefine and open up the limited definitions of "love" and experience it in a more essential way.
This book provides a pathway towards a more sustainable and authentic model of love by offering a creative toolkit of mindfulness exercises, meditation techniques, and interactive applications that will guide readers through the process of stripping away layers of habit to find a truer meaning of love, to "real love."
The book is divided into four sections, each addressing a distinct experience of "real love": love for the self, love for another individual, love for all beings, and love for life itself
Working from the inside out, the first step on the journey is to learn to love yourself; only then will you be able to share your love with the rest of the world. As you work through each layer you will become more present and adapt to things as they actually are. And it is only when we are truly engaged with present experiences that we not only are able to feel more connected to our own core selves, but also to those around us.
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 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. Sharon and Joseph Goldstein expanded their vision in 1989 by co-founding the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies (BCBS). In 1998, they initiated the Forest Refuge, a long-term retreat center secluded in a wooded area on IMS property. Today she leads teaches a variety of offerings around the globe.