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CAREERS / The Soul at Work | Example from Life

Searching for Truth

April 06, 1998

Cheryl Esposito, 33

Civil litigation lawyer

It's easy to be swayed by material concerns in my profession, and to forget that our real purpose is the search for the truth. As a young lawyer, I found myself heading down the material path until I started working for the late Franklyn E. Conflenti. Frank taught me that unless you are completely honest in your presentations to the court, other attorneys and your clients, you have not done your job. He also taught me that if your life is not focused on spiritual satisfaction and the attainment of God's kingdom on Earth, then you will be trapped by material concerns and your soul will be lost.

Although I was raised a Catholic, I didn't start going to daily Mass until after Frank died. I went initially as a tribute to his memory. Now I go because I've learned that having an active spiritual life keeps me focused on the essentials. This is especially true when it comes to my professional life. Guided by Frank's example, I encourage clients and witnesses to speak truthfully, even if what actually happened may reflect badly on them.

My views have not always been well-received. I was fired from one law firm and I received a smaller raise than I deserved from another because I refused to pad my time sheet. That would be stealing, in my opinion.

I have a moral as well as an ethical obligation to serve my clients' best interests. What I've discovered is that I can do so only by being absolutely fair--with other lawyers as well as with my clients.

More importantly, what I've discovered is that by focusing on spiritual principles, rather than material rewards, I can bring a heavenly presence to people in small ways that can make a big difference in their lives.

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