Sharon Salzberg – Metta Hour – Ep. 93 – Eddie Stern

Sharon Salzberg - Metta Hour - Ep. 93 - Eddie Stern

For the 93rd episode of the Metta Hour Podcast, Sharon sits down with author and teacher Eddie Stern.

Eddie is a yoga teacher from New York City who specializes in Ashtanga yoga and yoga therapy. His programs include the Urban Yogis program to reduce incidences of gun violence in inner cities, and the Breathe, Move, Rest program that offers health and wellness curriculums for under-served public school districts. Eddie is also the author of several books, including his brand new release, “One Simple Thing: A New Look at the Science of Yoga and How It Can Transform Your Life,” available everywhere in March 2019.

In this episode, Sharon and Eddie speak about his new book at length, and some of the recent research of yoga and meditation practice. They also speak about Eddie’s path as a yoga practitioner and teacher growing up in New York City. The conversation closes with Eddie leading a short breathing practice. To learn more about Eddie’s work visit

Links From This Episode: The Breathing App | Urban Yogis
Urban Yogis

Eddie shares his history and efforts to bring yoga into urban communities and underserved populations. He and Sharon discuss the influence that yoga practice has in teaching self-reliance, reducing violence, and navigating the challenges of life.

“No one goes to yoga or meditation if they do not recognize that they are suffering. In a lot of areas in our country and in the world there is extreme suffering which comes from the environment. It doesn’t necessarily come from drought or from a cruel leader. It might come from just living in an area where this no healthy food or a lot of crime.” – Eddie Stern 

Yoga Therapy (11:00)

How is yoga used therapeutically? Eddie and Sharron look at how yogic practices heal our nervous system by increasing our connection to the body. They examine how our body and consciousness are affected as we bring ourselves into balance.

“What the yogis did was say, ‘We are going to use your body and your breath and your mind and your sense organs. Then we are going to fix the misperception you have about the way you view yourself and the world – and we are going to fine tune a few other things along the way. That is going to be our therapeutic approach to fixing the greatest disease in your life, which is the illusion that you are your narrative that you live by.” – Eddie Stern  

Science and Spirituality (32:25)

Eddie talks about the current intersection between science and yogic practices. He and Sharron discuss the correlation between yogic principals and the findings of modern research.

Releasing Trauma (44:05)

Can working with our body affect how we relate to trauma? Eddie leads us in a 5-minute resonance breathing practice that tones the vagus nerve and relieves anxiety.

“If you are a human, you are traumatized. Your trauma might be small, it might be big. You might collect a lot more as you go through life. On one level or another, you are a bundle of karma which is here because of trauma.

It is time to start unwinding that ball. Take out those knots, one at a time. Start with the small ones. When you get to the big knots, you have to go to someone who can help you untie them – whether it is the guru or a psychotherapist.” – Eddie Stern  

Sharon Salzberg - Metta Hour - Ep. 93 - Eddie Stern

We are creatures of habit. We often find ourselves repeating habits uncontrollably. Whether constantly worrying. Checking social media. Stress eating. Or getting caught up in other self-defeating behaviors that lead to burnout. And disconnect us from ourselves and others. Why are bad habits so hard to overcome? Can we hack our brain’s learning circuitry to break bad habits? And cultivate behaviors and mind states that support our health and happiness?
Join us at 1440 Multiversity from April 12 – 14, 2019, for a unique experiential workshop on the science of habit change co-taught by Judson Brewer, MD, PhD, psychiatrist and neuroscientist, and Robin Boudette, PhD, psychologist, behavior-change expert, and mindfulness teacher. Visit to find this and other life-changing experiences available at 1440 Multiversity.


Images via House of Yoga and Urban Yogis