When my wife Liz and I set out to write a story called The Voice ten years ago we never considered that the devoutly religious Cambrensis or his mystical dreams had any meaning to us.
We were budding, hard-edged truth seekers - the first Americans to get a film crew into Soviet occupied Kabul after the invasion of Afghanistan in 1979.
Following the events closely, we had "seen through" the veil of the greatest CIA effort since Vietnam, arranged to fly into the heart of the Evil Empire's war machine and returned with a story for CBS News that was in stark contrast to the barrage of reports we'd seen of the war.
Here was an impoverished nation struggling to survive its own feudal past, crushed by the whims and ideals of two imperial fathers, the U.S. and Soviet Union, bent on proving their own righteousness. Ours was a complex and charged story, so powerful Oliver Stone eventually optioned the film rights.
But Afghanistan was always more than met the eye. Over the years we watched with deep sadness at the endless progression of the war, suspecting there were deeper reasons for the countless failures to achieve a peace but always finding them elusive. Meanwhile the war worsened, spreading chaos to other countries in the region.
Unknown to all but a handful of people, a nuclear war was narrowly averted in 1990 between India and Pakistan and the situation in the region continues to disintegrate to this day. What could possibly have motivated the instigators of this war to bring us to the edge of Armageddon on the eve of the millennium?
After years of struggling with that impossible story, the Voice was to be our attempt to escape the madness of that war. Inspired by Joseph Campbell's Power of Myth we would plunge into a story of myth and legend, leaving the world of geopolitics and hard-edged journalism behind.
But instead of an escape, our search began to reveal deeper, far reaching motives for the events that modern journalism only touches on.
And in time, we began a thoroughly mystical journey that led us - through dreams and coincidence - to find our personal connection to these historical events as well.
Continue to Page 2 of the Preface