We had an extraordinary chance to connect with Sharon Salzberg today, in advance of our retreat with her this weekend, to chat about her soon-to-be-released new book "Real Love."
And we learned? A lot. That love is about everyone. Everything. We are all connected. Here's more. And for the incredible opportunity to spend time with Sharon in person, join us Friday night for a dinner party with Sharon and Saturday for a "Day of Love" retreat at Neuehouse. Register here to join us.
And, now, enjoy words of wisdom from one of the greatest teachers of our time:
The Path: Can you talk a bit about the inspiration behind this book? Was there a specific event or experience that led to Real Love being written?
Sharon Salzberg: I found myself, through years, just wanting love to be part of different conversations: love for oneself as distinct from narcissism as we try to find balance in life; love for another that doesn’t feel like being awash in fear; love for all even as we face and challenge actions and views we in no way agree with. couldn’t love play a role in all these explorations? i was convinced it could, and wanted to help contribute to that.
The Path: Many of the people in The Path community are striving to bring change to their workplaces and communities. Can you share how the principles of Real Love could also support them as entrepreneurs and leaders?
Sharon: What I’m calling real love is a profound sense of connection. it doesn’t mean we like someone and it certainly doesn’t mean we approve of them or will support them, but we know deep down our lives are interconnected, they have something to do with one another. Knowing the truth of interconnectedness actually helps perspective taking, inclusiveness, less fear, less alienation. All of that is good for business decisions and leadership.
The Path: What's next for you on your journey as a teacher and an author? What are your hopes and wishes from putting this book out in the world?
Sharon: I can’t imagine writing another book right away! Having just read the entire book aloud for the audio version just recently, i had the radical thought that i wished it had been three separate books — one on love for oneself, one on love for another (whether parent or child or lover or colleague or pet), and one on love for all, which opens us to a love for life itself. Especially in that third section, I wrote about social movements and efforts to create change in this world base don love. i wished that was its own book….so maybe that’s next. One of my hopes for the book is that people, in addition to buying one for themselves, will buy one for someone they love. Another hope is that people will buy copies to be given away — to public libraries, cancer support groups, schools, prisons etc. That latter wish is kind of complex, but we’re working on figuring it out.