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RBG as a Spiritual Leader

Dear Gatherers,


Those of us who remember know exactly where we were when we learned of President Kennedy's assassination. Many more of us know exactly where we were when our country was attacked on 9/11.

On Friday evening, September 18, 2020 we learned of the death of the incomparable Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  That moment will become a defining moment in our lives and in our history.  We will never forget where we were when we heard the news. Many of us were about to attend Rosh Hashana services on Zoom when we got the text/email/alerts. My hero, RBC, was dead. Jewish tradition proclaims that someone who dies on Erev Rosh Hashana is a tzaddik, a righteous being. And she was. As a young female attorney with children, I revered RBG for the way in which she unapologetically both practiced law and mothered her children. I was awed by her intellect and her wit. I wanted to be her. Her death so profoundly affected us that we wanted to curl up, get into bed and never come out. How could we endure another blow? How could we continue to muster hope? The only way is to embrace RBG's teachings to be steady, patient, trusting and unwavering in our beliefs. This is our chance to be her. 





Rumi says:  Forget safety.                     Live where you fear to live.                     Destroy your reputation.                     Be notorious.


Is that where Notorious RBG came from? I wouldn't be surprised. With all that has been written about her this week, I wondered whether there was anything new or important I could add. As I thought about the movies about her, her opinions, her quotes and the words of so many others who knew her, I realized that RBG was for me, not only a role model in my legal career, but a spiritual guide. Three of the most important tenets of a spiritual life are: 1. Responding Rather Than Reacting to Life     RBG often mentioned the advice she received from her mother-in-law, that "in a marriage, it's wise to be a little deaf." She talked about how she believed that to be true for all relationships, including with those on the Supreme Court. "Being a little deaf" is a thoughtful way to take a pause and respond rather than react to every event or comment thrown at you. It's a way of breathing, something we all need to do more of! 2. Being Compassionate To Ourselves and Others     We all know what  a truly compassionate person RBG was but she also showed a great deal of self compassion, a trait fewer of us have. She accepted help, particularly from her husband who took over the vast majority of household and parenting duties. She embraced rather than balked at support and help. In the area of self-compassion, she taught me a lot. 3. Letting Go     Nothing is more important in living a spiritual life than being able to "let go." Most of us spend our lives holding on to slights, refusing to forgive ourselves or others and clinging to anger and resentment.  Ruth Bader Ginsburg had an unusual friendship with Justice Scalia as they shared a great love of opera and food. RBG talked lovingly about her friend, quoting his favorite line, "get over it". She agreed with him that life is too short to hold on to things and believed in the practice of "letting go" and moving on. I don't know whether she considered herself a spiritual person, but RBG's spirit was a gift to us all. Thank you RBG for doing so much for people, particularly women, for believing in our strengths, our lives and our futures. You will be sorely missed. These words of the poet Yung Pueblo have given me a great deal of solace this week:                               "they asked her,                                'why are we here at a time when there is so much misery           despair?                                 she responded,                                 'because you answered the call, the earth signaled for heroes, and the                                           heavens sent forth the ones who were most ready to grow and unleash                                  their unconditional love,  you're here to shine the light of your own healing,                                  to offer the world the gift of your balance and peace.' '' It's up to all of us to become the heroes, and to do so we need to start with ourselves. I send you much love and support during this time of upheaval, knowing that each one of you is there to shine your own light and together we will find our way out of the dark. There will not be a Gathering this Sunday in observance of Yom Kippor. Look forward to seeing you at our first October Gathering on Oct. 4 at 4 PT/ 7 ET. REGISTER HERE: https://www.thegathering-la.com/events-1/sunday-hour-of-calm-9 Please forward this newsletter to someone you think could use a little nurturing.

With love and light,

Nora Plesent

Lawyer/Entrepreneur/Mom/Immersive Meditation Leader/Ripple Maker


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