The idea for Warrior One arose in response to the suffering in the legal profession. Anxiety, debilitating stress, overwhelm, substance abuse and disillusionment can feel like constant companions. We experience them ourselves and watch friends and colleagues succumb. The suffering in the profession impacts individuals, their firms, their clients, and society.
We wanted to offer a better way: a path to effective, powerful practice that was also wise and compassionate, and that honored and cultivated our emotional as well as our intellectual intelligence. We wanted to empower our colleagues to become abundantly successful and happy as lawyers, judges, mediators, law professors, and other legal professionals.
We are all lawyers, and also mindfulness practitioners. So we knew that mindfulness training offered that way. That’s why we developed Essential Mindfulness for Lawyers®, a set of mindfulness tools specifically designed by and for the legal mind. Whether delivered in person, in webinars, or in on-demand online programs, EML enables you to become more effective, to protect your own wellbeing and the wellbeing of your colleagues, clients, and students, and to become leaders in your field.
We’re proud of our programs and our record of success. Please contact us to learn more. We’d love to support your practice.
Warrior One was named for the Shambhala Warriors. According to an ancient Tibetan legend, there will come a time of chaos in the world, when powerful forces will have risen in the West and East. Each power will have spent great wealth to annihilate the other, yet these powers will have much in common: weapons and technologies of destruction, but also their humanity. At this moment in time, when society’s future hangs in the balance, the Kingdom of Shambhala will emerge.
The legend says that the Kingdom of Shambhala is not a place, but exists only in the minds of the Shambhala Warriors. Nor can you recognize a Shambhala Warrior when you see him or her, for these Warriors wear no uniforms or insignia.
Great courage, both moral and physical, is required of the Shambhala Warriors, for they must go into the very heart of the great powers, into their board rooms, ivory towers, and congresses where the weapons and technologies are devised and kept. They must point to our common humanity, and persuade the great powers to lay down their arms.
The Shambhala Warriors have the courage to do this because they know that the weapons of these powerful factions only appear to be made of metals and explosives. In fact, the weapons arise from the choices, lifestyles, work-styles, and relationships the leaders – and their people – have chosen. In other words, they are made by the human mind. And as such, they can only be unmade by the human mind.
The Most Powerful Weapons: Wisdom and Compassion
The Shambhala Warriors will eventually have to go into battle against the forces of West and East, using only two weapons: wisdom and compassion. These weapons are not conventional, nor do they seem very effective. And yet they are tremendously powerful.
Why? Here is what the legend says.
Compassion is a weapon and a quality of mind. It enables the Warriors to understand our common humanity, to help others see that as well, and to accept that their own wellbeing and the wellbeing of others is connected. It helps them understand the importance of alleviating suffering whenever possible, and commit to not causing unnecessary harm. Once the Shambhala Warriors cultivate compassion, they can employ it to speak and act with the highest intellectual and emotional intelligence, to be effective warriors.
But compassion alone is soft. And so, by itself, compassion is not a powerful enough weapon.
Compassion must be combined with wisdom. Wisdom enables the Shambhala Warriors to bring awareness and clarity to the world, so that people can remain open-minded, thoughtful and discerning, and see things for what they are. Once people learn how to do that from the Shambhala Warriors, they will realize that the battle is not between West and East, or even between good and evil people. Rather, each person is waging his and her own campaign, every day, between the good and evil that runs through the landscape of every human heart. Plato is said to have written, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” If so, perhaps this is what he meant.
Lawyers as Warriors
At Warrior One, we believe lawyers are the Shambhala Warriors – or can be. Our job is to fight our clients’ battles and handle their matters with compassion and wisdom, helping each person navigate the line between good and evil in his or her own heart. We know that when we do that, our relationships with adversaries, clients, and colleagues, are different, and better. And through our leadership, their relationships with one other can be transformed.
Our influence as lawyers is broad and deep. We can no longer afford to adopt anything but the wisest, most compassionate perspective. The great judge and scholar Hillel the Elder was once asked to explain the ancient laws of the Hebrews while standing on one foot. He said, “That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole law; the rest is the explanation. Go and learn.”
And he also said, “If not now, when?”