Having lived in an area of Oakland, California for nearly ten years that is plagued with homelessness, graffiti, illegal dumping, and other manifestations of urban malaise, my ability to accept situations around me and embrace all others with compassion is challenged on a daily basis. So much of the behavior on the streets surrounding our building falls short of a standard of acceptability according to which I have lived most of my life. These are deeply held notions that continue to trigger judgements of what is “right” and what is “wrong.”
Much of the behavior that fails to square with my template of “acceptable” behavior also happens to be illegal. What is most difficult to accept is that while we have enacted laws to address such behaviors, and law enforcement personnel to enforce these laws, the law enforcement is simply lacking in this part of the city. For this reason, the limits of my ability to accept these situations around me are constantly tested.
Similar challenges confront individuals embroiled in litigation whether involving divorce or some other event or events challenging one’s beliefs as to “right” and “wrong.” What mindfulness does, at its core, is to facilitate the dis-identification from conditioned, egoic notions of “who I am” and embrace a felt connection with all of life. When one is able to become grounded in present-moment experience, there is a felt connection with all others. This is where true compassion arises. It is this true compassion that can heal even the most deeply rooted tensions, even within urban life.
By working with clients towards this end in the context of legal challenges, optimal solutions can be identified that may resolve these problems in a way simply not possible with traditional law practice. For a free consultation to learn more about mindfulness in law practice, call Attorney Michael Lubofsky at (415) 508-6263, or visit http://www.mindfulaw.com.