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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Seraphan » 20 Dec 2008 11:51

    Freakzilla wrote:(...) tells him that the real purpose of Taraza’s plan was to destroy Rakis and most of the worms in order to release the Tyrant’s oracular hold on them. By the time the one they have grows in numbers humanity will have grown past it. Never again will a single force rule their destiny.

    I'm missing something. Can someone explain it better for me? Because i thought that Leto's oracular vision was no longer holding them in bondage after the scatering.
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    The Destruction of Rakis

    Postby Freakzilla » 22 Dec 2008 17:50

    Seraphan wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:(...) tells him that the real purpose of Taraza’s plan was to destroy Rakis and most of the worms in order to release the Tyrant’s oracular hold on them. By the time the one they have grows in numbers humanity will have grown past it. Never again will a single force rule their destiny.

    I'm missing something. Can someone explain it better for me? Because i thought that Leto's oracular vision was no longer holding them in bondage after the scatering.


    I haven't ever really bought Odrade's story. Destroying Arrakis could only remove a focal point from the Old Empire as in the trickle of spice from the Rakian Priesthood. I suspect that it was to eliminate one of the only two sources of spice, the other being the Bene Tleilax, who would fall to the Honored Matres at about the same time. Coincidence?

    Somewhere, deep down, I kind of wish Leto had eliminated the spice.
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    Postby Seraphan » 22 Dec 2008 18:35

    I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
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    Postby Freakzilla » 23 Dec 2008 01:00

    Seraphan wrote:I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
    God i love Dune!


    The BG baited the HM into destroying Rakis and the Bene Tleilax to destroy the last two sources of spice in the Old Empire. This would also destroy the Guild, of course. Taraza's big gamble was doing it before they established the spice cycle on Chapterhouse. Odds are some of the Scattered BG cells would be sucessfull also and eventually spice would become common in the universe.
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    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 23 Dec 2008 01:29

    Couldn't the BG have used a different drug for the agony? Not that they'd love being without the spice, but I doubt it would end the sisterhood.
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    Postby SandChigger » 23 Dec 2008 07:31

    TheY used different drugs before. [It's] Just the ones they knew weren't as good as the spice.

    When the spice ran out, the entire body of Reverend Mothers would eventually die from withdrawal, so they would have had to hurry to bring up a new generation of RMs from among the acolytes, to ensure the continuity of the order.

    (Evidently the RMs who went out into the Scattering didn't manage that bit too well.)


    [Edit: fixed typos. Obviously posting while half-asleep is not a great idea.]
    Last edited by SandChigger on 23 Dec 2008 18:23, edited 1 time in total.
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    Postby Seraphan » 23 Dec 2008 12:24

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Seraphan wrote:I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
    God i love Dune!


    The BG baited the HM into destroying Rakis and the Bene Tleilax to destroy the last two sources of spice in the Old Empire. This would also destroy the Guild, of course. Taraza's big gamble was doing it before they established the spice cycle on Chapterhouse. Odds are some of the Scattered BG cells would be sucessfull also and eventually spice would become common in the universe.

    Makes sense.
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    Re:

    Postby artistagent116 » 09 Jun 2010 15:02

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Seraphan wrote:I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
    God i love Dune!


    The BG baited the HM into destroying Rakis and the Bene Tleilax to destroy the last two sources of spice in the Old Empire. This would also destroy the Guild, of course. Taraza's big gamble was doing it before they established the spice cycle on Chapterhouse. Odds are some of the Scattered BG cells would be sucessfull also and eventually spice would become common in the universe.


    By allowing (or causing by the Honored Matres) the total destruction of Rakis, I always thought Taraza desired the destruction of the remnants of The Tyrant, as well. Of course, as part of her plan one worm would remain (taken with them aboard the no-ship along with Sheeana), but The Tyrant's "pearl of awareness" within that singular worm was only a solitary pearl and by eliminating all remaining worms and their "pearls", Leto II would be greatly diminished as would his hold on the BG. He was "diluted" then, with only one worm in which to carry his essence. Her thinking might have been: 'when that worm becomes the vector sandtrout, the dilution will be even greater'. So often in this book Taraza curses him and his lasting control (Odrade shares this behavior, too). I can't help but think at least part of her goal was to try to free the Sisterhood of its Leto-bonds.
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    Re: Re:

    Postby Freakzilla » 09 Jun 2010 15:39

    artistagent116 wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:
    Seraphan wrote:I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
    God i love Dune!


    The BG baited the HM into destroying Rakis and the Bene Tleilax to destroy the last two sources of spice in the Old Empire. This would also destroy the Guild, of course. Taraza's big gamble was doing it before they established the spice cycle on Chapterhouse. Odds are some of the Scattered BG cells would be sucessfull also and eventually spice would become common in the universe.


    By allowing (or causing by the Honored Matres) the total destruction of Rakis, I always thought Taraza desired the destruction of the remnants of The Tyrant, as well. Of course, as part of her plan one worm would remain (taken with them aboard the no-ship along with Sheeana), but The Tyrant's "pearl of awareness" within that singular worm was only a solitary pearl and by eliminating all remaining worms and their "pearls", Leto II would be greatly diminished as would his hold on the BG. He was "diluted" then, with only one worm in which to carry his essence. Her thinking might have been: 'when that worm becomes the vector sandtrout, the dilution will be even greater'. So often in this book Taraza curses him and his lasting control (Odrade shares this behavior, too). I can't help but think at least part of her goal was to try to free the Sisterhood of its Leto-bonds.


    Is that why every scattering BG cell takes sandtrout with them?

    :text-bs:
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    Re: Re:

    Postby artistagent116 » 09 Jun 2010 17:34

    Freakzilla wrote:
    artistagent116 wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:
    Seraphan wrote:I dont know...They would still need the spice melange for their Reverend Mothers, unless it was simply their typical fear. Despite the image they try to pass (i exist only to serve) the sisterhood never truly sacrifice their interests. Their fear of prescience shows up in their regard of Duncan, Miles Teg, Odrade, and they're always quick to consider death as their response.
    If the BG wanted to end the spice cyle on Arrakis, why did they want Sheeana and her ability to control the Sandworms? To create their own spice cycle? Seems so. Somehow i feel that i'm missing the importance of Teg's role in all this.
    God i love Dune!


    The BG baited the HM into destroying Rakis and the Bene Tleilax to destroy the last two sources of spice in the Old Empire. This would also destroy the Guild, of course. Taraza's big gamble was doing it before they established the spice cycle on Chapterhouse. Odds are some of the Scattered BG cells would be sucessfull also and eventually spice would become common in the universe.


    By allowing (or causing by the Honored Matres) the total destruction of Rakis, I always thought Taraza desired the destruction of the remnants of The Tyrant, as well. Of course, as part of her plan one worm would remain (taken with them aboard the no-ship along with Sheeana), but The Tyrant's "pearl of awareness" within that singular worm was only a solitary pearl and by eliminating all remaining worms and their "pearls", Leto II would be greatly diminished as would his hold on the BG. He was "diluted" then, with only one worm in which to carry his essence. Her thinking might have been: 'when that worm becomes the vector sandtrout, the dilution will be even greater'. So often in this book Taraza curses him and his lasting control (Odrade shares this behavior, too). I can't help but think at least part of her goal was to try to free the Sisterhood of its Leto-bonds.


    Is that why every scattering BG cell takes sandtrout with them?

    :text-bs:


    Oh. Uh. Hmmmm. Good point. Obviously, I forgot about that. Still, I can't let go of the Rakis-Leto connection. I had a strong emotional response to the destruction of Rakis. Add to that the attachment I developed to the character Leto II. I guess I've linked the two too strongly. Perhaps it's just me. Thanks, Freakzilla....
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby SandChigger » 09 Jun 2010 20:14

    The BS flag was a bit abrupt, huh? :?

    Taraza and many BG believed that "Leto's jewels" ;) held humanity in some kind of hold, whether it was true or not. Someone here (I forget who at the moment. Help, someone?) pointed out that the destruction of Rakis & its worms did in a sense free the BG psychologically by removing the source of that belief. ;)
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Freakzilla » 09 Jun 2010 20:41

    But they were still spreading sandtrout through the universe, it doesn't make sense to me.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Freakzilla » 09 Jun 2010 20:44

    SandChigger wrote:The BS flag was a bit abrupt, huh? :?


    That was more for Taraza using the prescient hold excuse as a red herring than for artistagent116
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby SandChigger » 09 Jun 2010 23:10

    Freakzilla wrote:But they were still spreading sandtrout through the universe, it doesn't make sense to me.

    But wasn't the idea (among those who believed the pearls were influencing things) that it would take time for them to increase to the number (or density?) where they could again have an effect?
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 09 Jun 2010 23:35

    Also, I had the impression that Leo's awareness was spread among all the Arrakian sandworms, and the total of all of them had an influence. Taking a single worm and destroying the rest would effectively destroy the influence, even if that single worm had numerous progeny, because it was only a single one of the multitude that made up the total.

    Yes, I've had a couple of beers. Yes, I know that didn't make much sense. Hopefully you can derive some meaning from it; you're all smart people.

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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby SandChigger » 10 Jun 2010 01:24

    We feel you. :)


    (At least until you wake up. Then we shrug and point or look askance at the dog or cat. :? )
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Tycho » 05 Oct 2010 15:28

    I thought it was pretty clear from the books that Leto II's pearls of consciousness maintained an 'unending dream' ie. a prescient vision. As we know prescience doesn't only read the future, it locks the future into one path somehow. This was the twist at the end of Heretics, the climax of the novel (although there was also the axlotl tanks twist). The reader doesn't know about it, although in theory they could have figured it out; and the BG and others didn't realise it (or couldn't do anything about it). Basically Leto II had kept his grip on humanity all this time :shock:

    When Rakis is destroyed, enough of the pearls are destroyed that the vision cannot be maintained. The destiny of the race is now open-ended once again. Of course one of the pearls survives and in time will multiply to a number greater than before, but there is good reason not to fear this. By the time there is enough pearls to theoretically 'have an influence' (ie. The influence that prescient minds have on the future), the world will have changed so much that the vision has no basis in reality, and therefore no effect.

    To use an analogy, imagine the universe was a computer simulation and the unending dream was a carefully configured algorithm that regulated the simulation. If you were to switch the algorithm off for long enough, the state of the simulation could change beyond recogtion, rendering the algorithm ill-configured to perform any regulation. The algorithm would need to be rewritten from scratch. The pearls lacked the agency/will/awareness to actually create a vision of the future, they could merely sustain the one that Leto II left behind.

    Bear in mind that there was no other good storytelling reason for FH to bring up any of these ideas about pearls of consciousness and The Tyrants extended grip. He could simply have written that Leto II disintegrated into sandtrout, the end. But he didn't, and it carries pivotal significance for the overall story and is the culmination of the central prescience/fate theme found throughout the series. I'm surprised there's disagreement about this.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 05 Oct 2010 15:56

    Tycho wrote:I thought it was pretty clear from the books that Leto II's pearls of consciousness maintained an 'unending dream' ie. a prescient vision. As we know prescience doesn't only read the future, it locks the future into one path somehow.


    Welcome to the forum - and that "somehow" is VERY easy to explain - the oracle sees the future and then does something to bring that future to be. FH wasn't talking about some magical force the oracle exerts on the universe. If the oracle no longer has any way to exert force upon the universe (as the worms cannot) then this grip ends. Humanity was set free from Leto's visions as soon as it survived the Famine times and undertook the Scattering.

    Also, the Golden Path is set in stone, cannot be undone. The whole point of the Golden Path is that humanity can never again be threatened by one single danger (hint: the Scattering IS the Golden Path), and it's future could never be "locked in" by a prescient ever again. I see where you were coming from with this idea, but it relies on 2 things that simply don't pan out (the way that precience "creates" the future, and the nature of the GP which is the opposite of what you were thinking).

    Good to have some debate though, different veiwpoints are always nice. I'd recommend checking out some of the threads in the Golden Path subforum - we've been talking about exactly what you're saying here for years and have come to our conclusions based on massive piles of evidence, it's a good read.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby D Pope » 05 Oct 2010 16:44

    Probably a simplistic pov, I thought the unending dream was semi-consiousness, trapped in the monster (prescience or not). Like those mornings you're both asleep and awake, dreaming and not.
    Leto II is gone for good, except for OM. The "pearl" was just that; a miniscule portion of what Leto was, and not a compressed version of the whole. The pearl that the worms have do not make them Leto, or in any way similar to him.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 05 Oct 2010 17:08

    D Pope wrote:Probably a simplistic pov, I thought the unending dream was semi-consiousness, trapped in the monster (prescience or not). Like those mornings you're both asleep and awake, dreaming and not.


    Sometimes simpler is better.

    I thought of an easy example of why those pearls cannot be "creating" the future through prescience. If that view of how the prescient creates the future were true, we'd have a mjor problem - prescients see many futures, not just one (and of course pick the ones they like and try to steer events in reality towards those possible futures). If the act of seeing the future LITERALLY influenced the actual future we'd have a trainwreck of things happening at once, because all possible futures had been seen.

    FH definitely put that bit about them creating the future in the books to mock perfect prescience, he wrote that to make people think about how it would actually have to happen.

    Worms in the ground can't do much to influence all of the universe.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby D Pope » 05 Oct 2010 17:22

    That works for me, though i'd have said the worms in the ground had minimal influence.
    Mr. Brahe, your thoughts? :think:
    Leto II is gone for good, except for OM. The "pearl" was just that; a miniscule portion of what Leto was, and not a compressed version of the whole. The pearl that the worms have do not make them Leto, or in any way similar to him.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 05 Oct 2010 17:29

    D Pope wrote:That works for me, though i'd have said the worms in the ground had minimal influence.
    Mr. Brahe, your thoughts? :think:


    I also have a hard time believing that FH included the Pearls for no real reason, but if he had one in mind it certainly wasn't them controlling anything. There's simply no way for them to be exerting influence, and I feel extremely confident saying that FH did not intend for oracles to control the entire universe simply by seeing the future.

    Whatever FH had planned for those Pearls it was something else.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby D Pope » 05 Oct 2010 17:43

    Well again I know i'm taking the simple view here...
    Without considering the larger issues, the pearls balance the benefits of donning the skin. Who wouldn't want to be almost indestructable, increadably strong, and live to 3k years- untill you realize the price is being caught between life and hell for EVER! For me it lends a depth to Letos sacrifice i'm not sure i'd want to pay.
    Leto II is gone for good, except for OM. The "pearl" was just that; a miniscule portion of what Leto was, and not a compressed version of the whole. The pearl that the worms have do not make them Leto, or in any way similar to him.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby Tycho » 05 Oct 2010 19:31

    Welcome to the forum


    Thank you, glad to be here. This place seems like a goldmine of good Dune discussion, seems much more active and in depth than the other forums.

    - and that "somehow" is VERY easy to explain - the oracle sees the future and then does something to bring that future to be. FH wasn't talking about some magical force the oracle exerts on the universe. If the oracle no longer has any way to exert force upon the universe (as the worms cannot) then this grip ends. Humanity was set free from Leto's visions as soon as it survived the Famine times and undertook the Scattering.


    I personally want prescience in the Duniverse to be as least 'magical' as possible, but I think there's still a lot of thinking to do before it can be explained - it cannot be summed up with simple common sense IMO. First , just look at the quote at the start of HoD chpt 47:

    We are not looking at a new state of matter but at a newly recognized
    relationship between consciousness and matter, which provides a more penetrating
    insight into the workings of prescience. The oracle shapes a projected inner
    universe to produce new external probabilities out of forces that are not
    understood.
    There is no need to understand these forces before using them to
    shape the physical universe. Ancient metal workers had no need to understand
    the molecular and submolecular complexities of their steel, bronze, copper,
    gold, and tin. They invented mystical powers to describe the unknown while they
    continued to operate their forges and wield their hammers.

    -Mother Superior Taraza, Argument in Council

    To me this doesn't leave much room for interpretation, except that Taraza might be mistaken. I also recall from the second novel, the preface by an historian saying 'completely accurate and total prediction is fatal,' referring to the downfall of Muad'dib, who couldn't escape his doom. I think what we're looking at here is an extrapolation of the observer effect (or maybe even the Heizenberg uncertainty principle, or the Schroedinger's cat thing): merely looking at the future will affect it. Obviously the oracles can see different possibilities, so they can't 'all come true,' but I think the point is the more closely you look at one particular path, the more locked-in you become. This the trap Paul fell into, but Leto II avoided before finally using to his advantage.

    I suspect prescience works something like: you have minds like Paul or Leto II, enriched by the knowledge of Other Memories (male and female), mentat training, and spice. They perceive a 'higher dimension' (the books use those terms), as others can (eg. Guildsmen), they can sense the 'currents of Time,' but unlike the others they are able to make sense of it all because of their deep understanding of human motivations/trends (and in Paul's case mentat calculation). However once they have a clear picture of what forces are at play, somehow through their vision alone they can affect the 'external probabilities' ie. lock the future into one path, or at least make certain things more likely. Then of course they can take appropriate political actions to further solidify things.

    Also, the Golden Path is set in stone, cannot be undone. The whole point of the Golden Path is that humanity can never again be threatened by one single danger (hint: the Scattering IS the Golden Path), and it's future could never be "locked in" by a prescient ever again. I see where you were coming from with this idea, but it relies on 2 things that simply don't pan out (the way that precience "creates" the future, and the nature of the GP which is the opposite of what you were thinking).


    But the Scattering was not achieved automatically. At the moment of Leto's death, everything was set in motion, but it would still take a long time to go beyond the point of no return. Therefore Leto II needed to maintain some hold on destiny until his aim truly was achieved and no longer 'undoable.' I suppose there are some other interpretations of his 'unending dream' and its function, like perhaps to create a nexus blocking other prescients, or to influence the behavior of the worms. But the weight of evidence from the text and narrative choices just leads me to conclude that
    1) prescience alone affects things in ways not understood (i mean if it was very simple the BG wouldn't be confused about it)
    2) the pearls of consciousness and their 'unending dream' were a vital part of The Golden Path as they continued to influence history (not so much 'pulling the strings' like the God-Emperor, but just 'holding the strings' in place, steadily deflecting the currents of time).

    Otherwise the last chapter of Heretics is just a big red herring... not the best way to end a novel!

    Good to have some debate though, different veiwpoints are always nice. I'd recommend checking out some of the threads in the Golden Path subforum - we've been talking about exactly what you're saying here for years and have come to our conclusions based on massive piles of evidence, it's a good read.


    Yes I've read a lot of them but there's a lot to get through! A good resource would be a compilation of all the excerpts on prescience/oracles found in the novels, wonder if anyone's made one. Sometimes epigraphs at the start of chapters contain massive clues/indications that flew over one's head on first reading.
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    Re: Chapter 47

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 05 Oct 2010 20:07

    Sorry, I'm swamped I'll have to come back to this later, just from skimming it looks like you do bring up some good points though. I'm sure others will jump in to discuss as well.

    We might actually want to have one of the moderators split this off into it's own thread though,it might be getting a little "wide" in it's focus to belong in the reading groups any longer.

    - And yes, we are the main Dune forum on the internet. In a few days I'll be posting my quad-monthly (? whatever, every four months) report on our numbers versus the numbers of the official Dune forum (if you haven't already guessed a lot of us have had personal confrontations with the Herbert estate... long story).
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