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.
She has helped establish the Insight Meditation Society, the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies as well as the Forest Refuge, a long-term retreat center secluded in a wooded area on IMS property. 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 has addressed audiences at the State of the World Forum, the Peacemakers Conference (sharing a plenary panel with Nobel Laureates His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Jose Ramos Horta) and has delivered keynotes at Tricycle’s Buddhism in America Conference, as well as Yoga Journal, Kripalu and Omega conferences. She was selected to attend the Gethsemani encounter, a dialogue on spiritual life between Buddhist and Christian leaders that included His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
• Heart as Wide as the World (1999) ISBN 1-57062-428-3
• Voices of Insight (2001) ISBN 1-57062-769-X
• Faith: Trusting Your Own Deepest Experience (2003) ISBN 1-57322-340-9
• Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness (2004) ISBN 1-59030-187-0
• The Force of Kindness: Change Your Life with Love and Compassion (2006) ISBN 1-59179-355-6