Meditations for attorneys

September 23, 2008
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Lawyers are an analytical bunch, but are they also reflective and meditative? The American Bar Association has just released a new book, “The Reflective Counselor: Daily Meditations for Lawyers,” in hopes of helping attorneys find balance in their lives.

The book gives attorneys one meditation a day and is designed to help lawyers “recover from spiritual bankruptcy,” according to the ABA’s description of the book. Themes in the book include overcoming fear, personal beliefs and values, maintaining integrity, and dealing with difficult people.

When I first heard about this book, I chuckled. It immediately made me visualize attorneys sitting in their offices, reading their mediations a la Al Franken’s Stuart Smalley skits on “Saturday Night Live”: “I'm Good Enough, I'm Smart Enough, and Doggone It, People Like Me!”

But it’s true; attorneys have high-stress jobs and any way they can find to balance the demands of their personal and work lives is a good one. A happier attorney may mean a happier client. Taking five minutes out of the day to refocus and re-energize seems like a great idea, as long as attorneys don’t start finding a way to bill clients for their meditations.

And good news – special bulk pricing on the book is available.
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  3. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  4. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  5. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

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