Sharon Salzberg – Metta Hour – Ep. 162 – Zainab Salbi

For episode 162 of the Metta Hour, Sharon speaks with Zainab Salbi.

For episode 162 of the Metta Hour, Sharon speaks with Zainab Salbi.

Zainab Salbi is a humanitarian, author, and chief awareness officer of Find Center, a platform for personal development and growth. Oprah Winfrey has named her one of the 25 women changing the world to People Magazine, and President Clinton nominated her as a “21st Century Heroine.” At the age of twenty-three, Zainab founded and led Women for Women International, a humanitarian organization supporting women survivors of wars. She is the author of several books, including the national bestseller “Between Two Worlds” and her latest “Freedom is an Inside Job.”

In this conversation, Zainab and Sharon speak about the next steps of healing in a time of incredible division and hatred in the world. Zainab shares her process of discovering her own biases and shadows as an activist and how her journey to healing these aspects of herself inspired the writing of her latest book, “Freedom Is an Inside Job.” She shares how she has learned to balance the fire and passion of her activism work with meditation and well-being practices, and gardening. They speak at length about the crisis in Afghanistan as the United States withdraws troops from the region and the resulting aftermath and destabilization, particularly for women who are most at risk.

Warning: Please be aware that this conversation includes mention of sexual abuse and violence.
To learn how you can support the crisis in Afghanistan, you can visit: Women for Women InternationalVital Voices
Freedom is an Inside Job

Welcoming Zainab Salbi to the Metta Hour, Sharon shares a passage from Zainab’s Freedom Is an Inside Job: Owning Our Darkness and Our Light to Heal Ourselves and the World that is so profoundly relevant pertaining to the current turmoil we are witnessing in Afghanistan. From here, Zainab shares what inspired her—at the time, a young immigrant woman from Iraq—to make such meaningful humanitarian impacts on the world while learning to overcome her own anger, prejudice, and shadow.

“This anger that I have at injustice, and particularly as it applies to women—it did do things. It mobilized hundreds of thousands of dollars to help women survivors of war, it mobilized women—but it was chipping away from me.” – Zainab Salbi

Start to learn how to notice and overcome our unconscious biases, with Sharon, on Ep. 129 of the Metta Hour
Women, Afghanistan, Taliban (16:00)

In what Zainab refers to as a ‘Return of the Jedi’ style reawakening that occurred in her when she first heard of the recent chaos in Afghanistan in regards to the Taliban and the safety of women, she passionately describes the mobilization efforts her, and many concerned others, quickly put in place to keep communication and support flowing to women in need who had to stay behind.

“Now, I can be a warrior and I can be a gardener, and I can be fierce and I can be kind, and these things do not have to contradict each other. They can be the same, but we can still do it with kindness to ourselves, to each other, and to the Divine and to Earth.” – Zainab Salbi

Sharon’s friend and fellow teacher, Jack Kornfield illuminates the heart of the impeccable warrior, on Ep. 131 of Heart Wisdom
Operating Out of Fullness (34:34)

Sharon shares a story exemplifying the need to take your personal time and power back to avoid burnout when deep in service. From this perspective, Zainab shares how she learned this the hard way – squeezing her soul and constantly running on empty – until she learned how to operate out of fullness.

“I came to learn in a very hard way: The cause does not require us to self-sacrifice. Whatever we are fighting for does not require us to suffer.” – Zainab Salbi

For more Sharon exploring how to overcome stress and burnout in service and work, tune into Ep. 141 of the Metta Hour