Screening Room

Screening Room

Hearts of Darkness: Finding the Courage to Walk Through the Shadows

By Frank Pittman

September/October 2007

It takes courage to live a life. No matter how carefully we plan, how wisely we choose, stuff happens, and we must change. Fortunately, most of life's crises are the expected, often universal, stages of development, ones that call upon us to adapt and to grow. We make choices: each works well some of the time and brings us some of what we want; at other times, each feels like a terrible mistake, and we wish we could collect our $200 and return to GO.

Sometimes there are bolts out of the blue—unexpected crises, like 9/11. We try to protect ourselves by giving in to terrorists or sacrificing our freedoms to the government, as both gain their power by keeping us in a terrorized state. It's the terror—not the actual danger—that enslaves us.

One of the most courageous voices to be heard in this state of near universal panic that's emerged in recent years is the angrily unterrorized voice of Mariane Pearl, the richly multicultural (Cuban, French, Buddhist, black, white, etc.) journalist for National Public Radio and other media. Mariane and her Jewish-Iraqi-American husband, Danny Pearl, most notably of the Wall Street Journal, chose to explore, understand, explain, and change the world. They were unafraid, even in Pakistan, shortly after 9/11. They were determined to be unafraid of a world to which they felt so richly connected, particularly as they were awaiting the birth of their first child, Adam.

Soon after 9/11, solo terrorist Richard Reid tried…

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