text size Increase text size Increase text size Increase text size

While The Empty Mirror is an imaginary rather than an historical construct, the images and ideas were influenced by Hershey's studies as a Visiting Fellow at Harvard University. Courses in the visual arts, literature and religion - Buddhism and Taoism in particular - stimulated and shaped this outpouring (see Syllabi).

One tenet of Buddhism is that each human being has attachments and delusions which cause personal suffering. Further, the deluded mind results in behaviors which cause suffering for others. Hershey pondered how the deluded mind of Adolf Hitler could lead to such enormous pain and suffering for others.

Fundamental questions arose: "What can we now understand from Adolf Hitler? How can a deeper understanding of who Adolf Hitler was and how his mind operated help us to identify and respond to situations in the future where evil deeds may be perpetrated on a mass scale? And, on a smaller, more personal level, how can studying the nature of Hitler's delusions help us to understand the psychological processes which, sadly, lead men and women to cause suffering to others?"

It was important to Hershey that the film be ambiguous in its inquiry because there are no right answers. Instead, each viewer is invited to explore these issues in his/her own way.

Face in Fire
realization 3

< previous read more >