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July 28, 2023

Waylon & Buddhist Sharon Salzberg talk about “Real Life.”


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Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis presents:

Waylon talks with Sharon Salzberg about her new book, Real Life, her aspirations for our world, and their mutual passion for voting and being an active, caring citizen.

Sharon is a longtime friend of Elephant. Read an excerpt of Real Life here, on Elephant Journal.

“Some of your other books have focused on how to be a part of, as my Buddhist community likes to say, creating enlightened society. How to be a helpful part of change. If I have it right, this book is focused on living a meaningful life and dealing with all the challenges and obstacles and difficult emotions that come up.” ~ Waylon Lewis

“Thank you for understanding! I think it’s also: how do you deal with not just feeling fear, but the overwhelm of fear? And how do you deal with that sense that life has forgotten me, left me behind? How do you deal with these difficulties because so much of our conditioning says fight it and do battle with it and hate it and be ashamed of it—but that doesn’t work.

So it’s a whole other model of, how do I deal with this in a way that’s more open and spacious and free?

And then not only that, it’s also how do I remember to take in the joy and cultivate the good and actually take delight in things that I can experience in this moment?” ~ Sharon Salzberg

Our conversation: 

“…invite those ‘monsters’ in for dinner. Don’t let them have the run of the house, because that’s scary. That is dangerous. But you don’t have to be so frightened. You don’t have to put yourself down. Like, ‘I can’t handle this.’ Because awareness can handle this.” ~ Sharon Salzberg

“I see. So the inviting in for dinner is…they’re a guest. You treat them with respect, even warmth, but you don’t let them run around the house breaking china.” ~ Waylon Lewis

“That’s right. Exactly. I once used that example with a group and somebody in the group didn’t like it. And so I said, ‘Okay, how about invite them in for a cup of tea?’ And they said, ‘How about a cup of tea to-go?’

And I think, okay, if that’s the extent of your hospitality—that is just fine.” ~ Sharon Salzberg

Or, listen to the podcast:

“I think we’re not used to looking back at our intention or motivation, which would be a good skill to add: why am I actually doing this?

What do I hope for? Or, what’s the best result? Just do this little pivot and ask yourself, ‘What do I want to see most come out of this?’

Do I want a resolution?

Do I want to appear right?


Do I want to help mentor somebody?

It’s that that little twist of, ‘What’s my motive? What would make me really happy as an outcome?'” ~ Sharon Salzberg

Sharon is on Instagram; follow here. Check out her website as well for news about her books, offerings, and podcast.

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