After 9/11: A Film to Nurture Inter-Faith Dialogue

April 23, 2007

Author: Joanna Corma

Source: Episcopal Life Online

Wire Service: RNS

In the days following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, images of the smoldering World Trade Center towers and a bearded and turbaned Osama bin Laden flashed constantly across TV screens.

So did images of President George W. Bush, espousing national unity and speaking of the kindness that Americans of all backgrounds were showing each other in a time of grief.

The messages filling Valarie Kaur's e-mail inbox, however, spoke of something else.

The 20-year-old Stanford University student heard of fellow Sikhs who were harassed, beaten and even murdered. Initially, she felt numb, unsure how to respond. Then she remembered her grandfather and the core Sikh belief he taught her: Nam Dan Isnan.

"In order to realize yourself," Kaur remembers him saying, "in order to realize God, you must act here and now without fear."