loremaster wrote:I think you're contradicting yourself there chig.
You say once it is achieved (once what is achieved, exactly?) then it ceases to matter...... but then you say yourself that it only exists as long as people exist....
So of course it can still be threatened if it became possible to threaten all people in all places. (or, kill off half the universe in one go, then the other half later).
By your own statement, anything which threatens people... CAN threaten the golden path. Therefore you contradict yourself, because it has been achieved... and yet still matters. Or are you trying to imply that the golden path is in a state of continual "achievement" so long as there are people? (which would support my theory that it CAN, at some point in the distant future, fail).
As I understand it, all the Dune Chronicles is the process of humanity self-regulation. By the time of Paul, humanity had become so stagnated that it required a lot of gene mixing to avoid extinction which ended in the Jihad (we are talking about in-Duniverse logic here).
However it was not enough as Leto II foresaw that humanity would end if it remained confined within the known universe, that this lack of exploration and growth would cause the eventual destruction of humanity.
I have always supposed that under Leto´s regimen people not only were rarely allowed to travel offplanet but also they were told: "no, you can´t go to that wooooooonderful universe out there, yes, yes, is wooooooonderful but you must stay at home were you are safe becouse in that woooooooonderful universe out there you wont be safe" , only a little more subtly, you know, "plans within plans" and all that stuff
It´s like that Simpsons´s episode where Chief Wiggum tells Ralph "What is your fascination with my forbidden closet of mysteries?", that during 3500 years sure will increase your desire for exploring.
Now, let´s suppose that it were indeed possible to threaten all humanity post-Golden Path, may it be by "the Net" (kids, the net is just for porn
) or may it be any other thing. I think that humanity would self-regulate again but this time it won´t be by a charismatic leader (i think Leto ended that) this will be in the hands of formidable people. I think Dune 7 would had been like that, Heretics and Chapterhouse alredy insinuated that becouse there were no real protagonist, no real hero but an ensemble cast .