11/28/2012 10:41 am ET

5 Things We Can Learn From Carrie Mathison

I’d never found television exhilarating until I saw Homeland. Every Sunday night I sit on the edge of my sofa, clutching my maltipoo while the brilliant bipolar CIA agent Carrie Mathison, played by Claire Danes, takes me on a thrilling ride through covert missions, terrorist plots and high-stakes romantic entanglements. Now that the show is deep into season two, I’m realizing it’s not only the suspenseful drama that keeps me enraptured week after week, but the complex wisdom offered by Carrie, in all of her wild intelligence, courageous patriotism and complicated desires. Here is what I think we can learn from her:

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