Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Image
    Can't find the appropriate forum for your topic? Post it here!

Moderators: ᴶᵛᵀᴬ, Omphalos, Freakzilla

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 06 Feb 2015 20:44

My suspicion is that Freak is probably right and that FH changed his mind shortly before publishing. He would have had enough time to remove relevant sections pertaining to its newness, but it would have been far too much work to redo all the subtle passages and nuances that make more sense with its having been recent.

As for the BG and the spice, I don't recall any indication in Dune that the spice played an integral part in BG life, even though I'm sure they used it. We know for sure, though, that the primary drug that induced the inward gaze and made BG into RM's - the "truthsayer drug" - wasn't an Arrakis product. We know this because it definitely wasn't WoL, and if it was just a spice derivative there would be no reason for Mohiam to explain its existence to Paul as if it was some kind of secret. Since I assume the drug that made BG into RM's, and allowed them to enter truthtrance, was the most important drug to them, it's just one more reason why spice's use must have been new to them. Once spice is well-known, of course, we know that they turn to it and never look back, to the point where by GEoD the entire faction is hooked and they can't live without it.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
JasonJD48
Posts: 76
Joined: 01 Feb 2015 19:26
Location: Rhode Island

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby JasonJD48 » 06 Feb 2015 21:14

georgiedenbro wrote:My suspicion is that Freak is probably right and that FH changed his mind shortly before publishing. He would have had enough time to remove relevant sections pertaining to its newness, but it would have been far too much work to redo all the subtle passages and nuances that make more sense with its having been recent.


I agree, that really does make the most sense.


As for the BG and the spice, I don't recall any indication in Dune that the spice played an integral part in BG life, even though I'm sure they used it. We know for sure, though, that the primary drug that induced the inward gaze and made BG into RM's - the "truthsayer drug" - wasn't an Arrakis product. We know this because it definitely wasn't WoL, and if it was just a spice derivative there would be no reason for Mohiam to explain its existence to Paul as if it was some kind of secret. Since I assume the drug that made BG into RM's, and allowed them to enter truthtrance, was the most important drug to them, it's just one more reason why spice's use must have been new to them. Once spice is well-known, of course, we know that they turn to it and never look back, to the point where by GEoD the entire faction is hooked and they can't live without it.


I don't know, maybe they did not want Paul or outsiders to know that they knew of the Spice all along and withheld it. They may also not want people to know what that drug is because then the chance to deprive it from them becomes a vector of vulnerability. The truthsayer drug doesn't seem any less effective than the Spice, which would make me wonder why they would change over. Lastly, not all RMs are truthsayers, which makes the name sort of odd. I think this may be an area as a whole where Frank didn't have it clear.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"
- Arthur C. Clarke

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 06 Feb 2015 22:26

JasonJD48 wrote:
As for the BG and the spice, I don't recall any indication in Dune that the spice played an integral part in BG life, even though I'm sure they used it. We know for sure, though, that the primary drug that induced the inward gaze and made BG into RM's - the "truthsayer drug" - wasn't an Arrakis product. We know this because it definitely wasn't WoL, and if it was just a spice derivative there would be no reason for Mohiam to explain its existence to Paul as if it was some kind of secret. Since I assume the drug that made BG into RM's, and allowed them to enter truthtrance, was the most important drug to them, it's just one more reason why spice's use must have been new to them. Once spice is well-known, of course, we know that they turn to it and never look back, to the point where by GEoD the entire faction is hooked and they can't live without it.


I don't know, maybe they did not want Paul or outsiders to know that they knew of the Spice all along and withheld it. They may also not want people to know what that drug is because then the chance to deprive it from them becomes a vector of vulnerability. The truthsayer drug doesn't seem any less effective than the Spice, which would make me wonder why they would change over. Lastly, not all RMs are truthsayers, which makes the name sort of odd. I think this may be an area as a whole where Frank didn't have it clear.


It's been mentioned before on this board that FH may have developed his ideas about spice and the 'old drugs' over time. I don't think Mohiam could have intentionally misled or lied to Paul because he also had the truthsense and would have known; I'm pretty confident this implies the "truth drug" wasn't spice. I'm not even sure that spice is classified in Dune as a poison (contrasted with the WoL, which is), and we know that to become a RM the BG in question has to change the poison. By the time of Dune I don't see how there would be any use in hiding that the BG use spice, since it's already the most expensive substance in the universe. The vector of vulnerability is already there as demonstrated by Paul in Dune when he threatens to destroy it.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
JasonJD48
Posts: 76
Joined: 01 Feb 2015 19:26
Location: Rhode Island

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby JasonJD48 » 07 Feb 2015 00:29

georgiedenbro wrote:
JasonJD48 wrote:
As for the BG and the spice, I don't recall any indication in Dune that the spice played an integral part in BG life, even though I'm sure they used it. We know for sure, though, that the primary drug that induced the inward gaze and made BG into RM's - the "truthsayer drug" - wasn't an Arrakis product. We know this because it definitely wasn't WoL, and if it was just a spice derivative there would be no reason for Mohiam to explain its existence to Paul as if it was some kind of secret. Since I assume the drug that made BG into RM's, and allowed them to enter truthtrance, was the most important drug to them, it's just one more reason why spice's use must have been new to them. Once spice is well-known, of course, we know that they turn to it and never look back, to the point where by GEoD the entire faction is hooked and they can't live without it.


I don't know, maybe they did not want Paul or outsiders to know that they knew of the Spice all along and withheld it. They may also not want people to know what that drug is because then the chance to deprive it from them becomes a vector of vulnerability. The truthsayer drug doesn't seem any less effective than the Spice, which would make me wonder why they would change over. Lastly, not all RMs are truthsayers, which makes the name sort of odd. I think this may be an area as a whole where Frank didn't have it clear.


It's been mentioned before on this board that FH may have developed his ideas about spice and the 'old drugs' over time. I don't think Mohiam could have intentionally misled or lied to Paul because he also had the truthsense and would have known; I'm pretty confident this implies the "truth drug" wasn't spice. I'm not even sure that spice is classified in Dune as a poison (contrasted with the WoL, which is), and we know that to become a RM the BG in question has to change the poison. By the time of Dune I don't see how there would be any use in hiding that the BG use spice, since it's already the most expensive substance in the universe. The vector of vulnerability is already there as demonstrated by Paul in Dune when he threatens to destroy it.


Paul had the potential for truthsense, but I think she could have fooled him, he was only having a few dreams at the time, not really awakened yet. Plus she didn't lie to him, she just didn't tell everything.

As for Spice being poison:
"You must calm yourself," she said. "If there's--"
"The spice," he said, "It's in everything here--the air, the soil, the food. The geriatric spice. It's like the Truthsayer drug. It's a poison!"
She stiffened.
His voice lowered and he repeated: "A poison--so subtle, so insidious . . . so irreversible. It won't even kill you unless you stop taking it. We can't leave Arrakis unless we take part of Arrakis with us."
The terrifying presence of his voice brooked no dispute.


A few things to note in this quote, first this is before he knew of the Water of Life and before he had any OM. Paul equates Spice with the Truthsayer drug, he doesn't say the two are the same because Mohiam implied they are not.

But as you mention, by the end of the book, he's threatening the source of the Spice, exactly as the sisterhood feared:
"Even your Bene Gesserit Truthsayer is trembling," Paul said. "There are other poisons the Reverend Mothers can use for their tricks, but once they've used the spice liquor, the others no longer work."


I submit that by this point, with Prescience on demand and a full body of OM, he knows that the Truthsayer drug is Spice. If it is not, why are the BG so scared?
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"
- Arthur C. Clarke

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 07 Feb 2015 00:51

I know Paul says in that passage that it's a poison, because it's true that it can eventually cause your death. He's definitely linking it with the drugs the BG use, which can imply that spice is just another awareness spectrum drug, albeit a more powerful one. But he can't mean it's a poison as in literally being the same thing as the truthsayer drug, because that drug is the poison BG have to convert in order to become RM's, and if they cannot then they die immediately. Plenty of people consume spice, and even here Paul says that it can only eventually kill you. On the other hand, I think it's fair to say that FH wasn't hung up on certain details and that he didn't really bother working out the exact differences between spice liquor, raw spice, edible spice, spice fibre, water of life, etc.

As for Paul being a truthsayer:

Dune wrote:"I observed you in pain, lad. Pain's merely the axis of the test. Your
mother's told you about our ways of observing. I see the signs of her teaching
in you. Our test is crisis and observation."
He heard the confirmation in her voice, said: "It's truth!"
She stared at him. He senses truth! Could he be the one? Could he truly be
the one? She extinguished the excitement, reminding herself: "Hope clouds
observation."
"You know when people believe what they say," she said.
"I know it."


He didn't say he sometimes knew the truth, he just said he knew it. And she'd have known if he was lying!

I don't believe Paul's awakening informs us about what the truthsayer drug is, other than the fact that he at one point could have said that "the BG drug is the spice!" but he doesn't. That's fairly telling, although not conclusive. I think my above point is enough for me. Anyone can consume spice or spice liquor and live, no one can consume the BG drug and live except a RM, ergo they aren't the same. The only immediately deadly Arrakis poison is WoL, and it's certain the BG were not using that previously.

But about your question of why the threat to spice at the end worried the BG so much, I think that even if they never used it all it would still scare them shitless, since without it all space travel would end and the BG program would be over. In terms of what Paul meant in that specific quote about the old poisons no longer working, we end up returning to Freak's ongoing question of why spice should ever have mattered the BG so much in the first place. He seems to think there was really no need for it in their case, even though it was needed for space travel until the INM were invented. I suppose the best we can say for sure is that a number of BG were probably addicted to it already for the geriatric effect, even if it wasn't the drug they used for the RM test and for truthtrance.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
JasonJD48
Posts: 76
Joined: 01 Feb 2015 19:26
Location: Rhode Island

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby JasonJD48 » 07 Feb 2015 02:07

georgiedenbro wrote:I know Paul says in that passage that it's a poison, because it's true that it can eventually cause your death. He's definitely linking it with the drugs the BG use, which can imply that spice is just another awareness spectrum drug, albeit a more powerful one. But he can't mean it's a poison as in literally being the same thing as the truthsayer drug, because that drug is the poison BG have to convert in order to become RM's, and if they cannot then they die immediately. Plenty of people consume spice, and even here Paul says that it can only eventually kill you. On the other hand, I think it's fair to say that FH wasn't hung up on certain details and that he didn't really bother working out the exact differences between spice liquor, raw spice, edible spice, spice fibre, water of life, etc.


Here's the problem though, at the end, Mohiam is scared because once they start using the Spice, none of their other drugs work! Perhaps what they would use for the Agony is a concentrated Spice concoction. If the BG aren't using the Spice, then they have no reason to be scared. He does say that it will kill you if you stop taking it, but given that he's never been exposed at that point to overdose quantities, he wouldn't know if there's other ways it will kill, nor does his explicitly rule them out.

We also know from Children of Dune that Spice Overdose is possible and deadly:
No sandtrout had ever before encountered a hand such as this one, every cell supersaturated with spice. No other human had ever before lived and reasoned in such a condition.



As for Paul being a truthsayer:

Dune wrote:"I observed you in pain, lad. Pain's merely the axis of the test. Your
mother's told you about our ways of observing. I see the signs of her teaching
in you. Our test is crisis and observation."
He heard the confirmation in her voice, said: "It's truth!"
She stared at him. He senses truth! Could he be the one? Could he truly be
the one? She extinguished the excitement, reminding herself: "Hope clouds
observation."
"You know when people believe what they say," she said.
"I know it."


He didn't say he sometimes knew the truth, he just said he knew it. And she'd have known if he was lying!


That may be the case, but it's academic to the point, because at no point does she say that the Truthsayer Drug isn't the Spice, so there's no lie to detect.


I don't believe Paul's awakening informs us about what the truthsayer drug is, other than the fact that he at one point could have said that "the BG drug is the spice!" but he doesn't. That's fairly telling, although not conclusive. I think my above point is enough for me. Anyone can consume spice or spice liquor and live, no one can consume the BG drug and live except a RM, ergo they aren't the same. The only immediately deadly Arrakis poison is WoL, and it's certain the BG were not using that previously.


I don't think that FH would have the need to write that in, by the time Paul awakens, he has a lot of other concerns besides what the BG Truthsayer Drug is, nor is FH the kind of writer that spells things out in such a manner.


But about your question of why the threat to spice at the end worried the BG so much, I think that even if they never used it all it would still scare them shitless, since without it all space travel would end and the BG program would be over. In terms of what Paul meant in that specific quote about the old poisons no longer working, we end up returning to Freak's ongoing question of why spice should ever have mattered the BG so much in the first place. He seems to think there was really no need for it in their case, even though it was needed for space travel until the INM were invented. I suppose the best we can say for sure is that a number of BG were probably addicted to it already for the geriatric effect, even if it wasn't the drug they used for the RM test and for truthtrance.


If they were only scared because of space travel (and I'm sure that was a factor) that would have been what Paul said, same with it just being a few addicts that used it to live longer, but he doesn't say either of those instead he threatens that the loss of the Spice would essentially mean the loss of their powers, because it renders all their other drugs ineffective.

This also means that if they used it for geriatric purposes, they have to use it for its other purposes as well since again it renders their other drugs ineffective. As for Freak's question, that's what we are trying to answer, and I think the answer is that they used the Spice all along and kept it secret.

The last factor I would add is this, if they weren't using it for their powers in Paul's time, why would they make themselves dependent on it later, knowing Paul and then Leto II keep a stranglehold on it. At that point any experimenting or converting they were doing should have reasonably stopped by any sane measure and quickly gone back to the old drugs.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"
- Arthur C. Clarke

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 07 Feb 2015 03:07

If even a moderate proportion of BG were addicted they might, as a body, choose to risk continued use of it rather than sacrifice all of those members. Maybe the BG right at the top of the pyramid were all addicted, which would surely have shifted them in favor of continuing to obtain it. I also think the BG were so full of themselves that they couldn't imagine they would continue to decline in power for thousands of years without respite. Maybe they assumed their stockpiles would get them through the 'hard times' with Paul and then they'd be ok again.

I have to say I hadn't thought of the possibility that the 'truthsayer drug' might just be a massive spice overdose. It's an interesting idea, but overall it makes the RM test become a little fishy, since if the BG taking the test was already familiar with spice in general then taking more of it at once wouldn't really be that much of a test; she'd already more or less be prepared for it. If the normal RM test is anything like what Jessica went through with the WoL then the idea would be to ingest a deadly poison that you hadn't imbibed before, and you'd have to figure out how to look inside and neutralize it. A spice overdose doesn't really sound right in terms of fitting that description.

In any case my conclusion is that FH didn't care about these details. He may have sort of fudged the literal reasons why everyone had to have it, because he intended spice to be the galactic analogy to water on Arrakis; that commodity everyone needs and would do anything to get, like oil, water, gold, whatever. He may as well have said "Why do they need spice? Shut up! That's why." And in a way that's good enough for me; the demand for it is a McGuffin, a necessary plot device to show what factions will do to vie for a valuable resource in limited supply.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
JasonJD48
Posts: 76
Joined: 01 Feb 2015 19:26
Location: Rhode Island

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby JasonJD48 » 07 Feb 2015 04:21

georgiedenbro wrote:If even a moderate proportion of BG were addicted they might, as a body, choose to risk continued use of it rather than sacrifice all of those members. Maybe the BG right at the top of the pyramid were all addicted, which would surely have shifted them in favor of continuing to obtain it. I also think the BG were so full of themselves that they couldn't imagine they would continue to decline in power for thousands of years without respite. Maybe they assumed their stockpiles would get them through the 'hard times' with Paul and then they'd be ok again.


I don't think that they would just dump those that were addicted to the Spice, but I don't think it would make sense for them to continue to convert the rest of the sisterhood over. Though I could buy your point that they are arrogant in that way.


I have to say I hadn't thought of the possibility that the 'truthsayer drug' might just be a massive spice overdose. It's an interesting idea, but overall it makes the RM test become a little fishy, since if the BG taking the test was already familiar with spice in general then taking more of it at once wouldn't really be that much of a test; she'd already more or less be prepared for it. If the normal RM test is anything like what Jessica went through with the WoL then the idea would be to ingest a deadly poison that you hadn't imbibed before, and you'd have to figure out how to look inside and neutralize it. A spice overdose doesn't really sound right in terms of fitting that description.


Who's to say that they are introduced to the Spice before hand? I don't recall Jessica having a lot of experience with the Spice prior to Arrakis. Also, neutralizing the poison isn't really the challenge, doing so while at the same time experiencing a whole new awareness of Ancestral Memory is. The combination of pain and having to manage and not be corrupted by that new awareness, while maintaining enough focus to neutralize the drug and do it in time is the real test.


In any case my conclusion is that FH didn't care about these details. He may have sort of fudged the literal reasons why everyone had to have it, because he intended spice to be the galactic analogy to water on Arrakis; that commodity everyone needs and would do anything to get, like oil, water, gold, whatever. He may as well have said "Why do they need spice? Shut up! That's why." And in a way that's good enough for me; the demand for it is a McGuffin, a necessary plot device to show what factions will do to vie for a valuable resource in limited supply.


I agree to an extent, and much is made about the Spice being an allegory to oil. But at the same time, the Spice plays such a key role later on, it is obvious that the Sisterhood is dependent on it in the latter books, and Mohiam's reactions as well as Paul's statements to/about her seem to indicate to me that the dependence they had was in place already at that point. While this discussion has given me a lot of food for thought, I still feel that is the case. The two Great Schools need the Spice for their powers, Prescience-Future-Guild and Other Memory-Past-Bene Gesserit. The Houses needed it because CHOAM became dependent on it financially and because many nobles were addicted to it for its anti-aging properties. A McGuffin maybe, but not one without rationalization.

Anyway, I need some sleep if I'm going to be coherent any longer.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"
- Arthur C. Clarke

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 07 Feb 2015 13:07

JasonJD48 wrote:Who's to say that they are introduced to the Spice before hand? I don't recall Jessica having a lot of experience with the Spice prior to Arrakis. Also, neutralizing the poison isn't really the challenge, doing so while at the same time experiencing a whole new awareness of Ancestral Memory is. The combination of pain and having to manage and not be corrupted by that new awareness, while maintaining enough focus to neutralize the drug and do it in time is the real test.


There's a quote I can't be bothered right now to find about what happens during the agony. Basically the BG takes the poison, and as it's killing her the inner voices scream out to Live! Live! and she is shocked into hearing the voices and into turning the awareness inside. It's the trauma of the poison and the risk of death that forces the BG to hear the screaming of the inner voices, whose urging, if I recall, actually helps the BG to focus and look inward. I believe they also help her change the poison if there are RM's in there, since they've done it before, but I can't recall if there's a quote to back up this particular point. Overall I think the voices are an aid to the process, not a hindrance, and the real test is to see whether the threat of death (similar to the trauma a ghola goes through to force his old self to wake up) will force the BG to finally open up and hear the voices. If she can, they'll help her change it, if not, she's on her own and she will die. While the changing of the poison is both the threat and the task, the real test is to see whether the BG is equipped to hear the voices from within or not.

I assume the reason men cannot pass this test isn't because they are 'insensitive' or inferior at body control or anything like that (which I don't think FH would have suggested they are), but rather that they are not prone to want to listen to voices from the past and are biased towards thinking of what's to come, because that's how the male brain works. It's counter-intuitive for a man to look into the past when in a crisis, when the 'obvious' solution is normally to figure out what to do next. From this perspective, I'd say the RM test is primarily about seeing whether the BG candidate is truly tuned into the need to form a connection with the genetic inheritance and to continue the chain of ancestors knowingly, since having a long-term goal absolutely requires being in touch with those who came before and not thinking that because they're dead and you're alive what you want counts for more. This idea of the wishes of the dead being irrelevant is a modern bias and I'm pretty sure FH was trying to show how wrong it is.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
Lisan Al-Gaib
Posts: 418
Joined: 11 Feb 2008 15:34
Location: In the Heart of My Religion.

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby Lisan Al-Gaib » 07 Feb 2015 14:41

I know it was never stated but i think the BG could probably syntethize their own poison from the spice liquor. Not water of life but also deadly nonetheless.

I think the spice became the sharing and awakening memory drug along the 10000 years if stability the empire experienced.

And maybe is not easy for the BG to drop from spice anymore. we must think about the sharing ritual as a chain reaction, if the giving RM used spice the receiving BG must use it also. To break this chain means loosing all previous RM memories.
The singular multiplicity of this universe draws my deepest attention. It is a thing of ultimate beauty.

-- The Stolen Journals


User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18163
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby Freakzilla » 07 Feb 2015 19:54

The BG used other poisons but once they used the "spice liquor" the others no longer worked.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
Cpt. Aramsham
Posts: 104
Joined: 06 Oct 2012 11:11

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby Cpt. Aramsham » 09 Feb 2015 16:04

One thing to keep in mind is that 'the Truthsayer drug' isn't necessarily a specific drug. In fact, the glossary talks about 'one of several "awareness spectrum" narcotics' that induces truthtrance, and defines a Reverend Mother as someone who has 'transformed an "illuminating poison" within her body' (and the entry for Water of Life seems to equate 'illuminating poison' and 'awareness spectrum narcotic'). So it's not a lie (of omission, I suppose) for Mohiam to not tell Paul that the Truthsayer drug is spice: spice (or a spice derivative such as spice liquor) is one drug that can be used as the Truthsayer drug. By the time of Dune, perhaps the most common drug they use, but not the definition of the Truthsayer drug.

As for why other drugs don't work once they've used the spice liquor, the answer is probably in Jessica's observation that 'I could alter any poison now before it did me harm': this might interfere with the awareness spectrum effect of other drugs. (Why melange still works, and why RMs who've gained similar powers of transmutation through other drugs don't become immune to them in the same way is unexplained; we just have to accept that spice is special and more potent somehow.)

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 09 Feb 2015 16:17

Yes, it's not impossible that the truthsayer drug is a spice liquor. Except we know that such a liquor isn't a deadly poison since lots of people drink it. So for the BG to use it for the agony and for truthtrance they would have to take an overdose of it. I suppose simply overdosing on a drug that's safe in smaller quantities could be used for the agony, but it somehow doesn't ring true for me. We know the BG have other drugs, so I see no need to assume that the truthsayer drug is spice. There's no evidence at all that it is, even if it's not outside the realm of possibility.

The only thing in favor of a spice overdose being used for the agony would be the strange exceptional case of Ghani and Leto, who, due to spice overdose in Chani, go through the agony in the womb. But this is such a weird and hard to explain case that I wonder whether the agony occurring due to overdose was something known from before.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

User avatar
JasonJD48
Posts: 76
Joined: 01 Feb 2015 19:26
Location: Rhode Island

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby JasonJD48 » 09 Feb 2015 20:31

georgiedenbro wrote:Yes, it's not impossible that the truthsayer drug is a spice liquor. Except we know that such a liquor isn't a deadly poison since lots of people drink it. So for the BG to use it for the agony and for truthtrance they would have to take an overdose of it. I suppose simply overdosing on a drug that's safe in smaller quantities could be used for the agony, but it somehow doesn't ring true for me. We know the BG have other drugs, so I see no need to assume that the truthsayer drug is spice. There's no evidence at all that it is, even if it's not outside the realm of possibility.

The only thing in favor of a spice overdose being used for the agony would be the strange exceptional case of Ghani and Leto, who, due to spice overdose in Chani, go through the agony in the womb. But this is such a weird and hard to explain case that I wonder whether the agony occurring due to overdose was something known from before.


Why it rings true to me is the interaction between Paul and Mohiam at the end. From that interaction he makes it seem they are as dependent on it as the Spacing Guild and Mohiam certainly acts shaken up enough to give the same indication. That's what clinches it for me personally, though it has some help in Paul bringing up the parallels between Spice and the 'Truthsayer drug' earlier on as well.

Another factor is that the same drug is said to be used for the Agony, helping to further access OMs and helping the Truthtrance. If you accept that Trushsay isn't just studying minutia but also includes a minor prescient sense, then Spice can be called upon for all three functions, otherwise you would need another drug that carried all the indications like the Spice but is for some reason less desirable than the Spice, which itself has a very limited supply and stops the effectiveness of other drugs if you need to switch back.

That said, I think it is also a case of what TV Tropers would call 'Early Installment Weirdness' in that he seems to like the same drug between the Agony, accessing OMs and Truthtrance. Why is it then called the Truthsayer drug, seems to me the concept of a RM, Truthsense and the Spice evolved a bit over the book and over the series.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"
- Arthur C. Clarke

georgiedenbro
Posts: 773
Joined: 11 Jun 2014 13:56
Location: Montreal, Canada

Re: Spice: A Recent Discovery?

Postby georgiedenbro » 09 Feb 2015 20:57

JasonJD48 wrote:
That said, I think it is also a case of what TV Tropers would call 'Early Installment Weirdness' in that he seems to like the same drug between the Agony, accessing OMs and Truthtrance. Why is it then called the Truthsayer drug, seems to me the concept of a RM, Truthsense and the Spice evolved a bit over the book and over the series.


Pretty much this.
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"


Return to “˱”