any idea when in earths history dune falls?

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Freakzilla
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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby Freakzilla » 16 Jan 2018 14:37

Omphalos wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:So what would cause this great change, cultural or otherwise? Moon base? Mars Colony? Asteroid Colony? Generation ship to another star? I only mentioned the moon landing as the beginning of mankind's movement though deep space for a point of reference. It doesn't in itself have to be a earthshaking cultural revolution.


Are you fucking kidding me too? BTW, the cultural influence exists now. I do not have to be a time traveler to get it.

EDIT: Look, maybe I need to be crystal clear here, because I cannot believe that two otherwise intelligent persons such as yourselves aren't getting it. All I am saying is that the moon landing had significant cultural effects. Are the two of you honestly debating that point?


No, I agree with you. I'm just asking them, if not that then what, in terms of space travel, would do it?
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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby distrans » 16 Jan 2018 18:00

id say that a number of successful interstellar colonizations would be the threshold

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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby georgiedenbro » 17 Jan 2018 12:48

Omphalos wrote:All I am saying is that the moon landing had significant cultural effects. Are the two of you honestly debating that point?


No, I'm not arguing that it had no significant effect. It definitely did, as did several other key events in the 60's and 70's. All I'm suggesting is that it wasn't the single, stand-out event the defined the age and sent us on an entirely new course. But as Freak points out it's true that that might be too tight a standard to meet for a single event that the start of a 110 century process. As a milestone maybe it's a good marker.

Here's a passage shortly after the SPACE TRAVEL! bit that is partly behind my position on this, and it's a partial answer to Freak's question about what kind of event would qualify for me:

Immediately, space gave a different flavor and sense to ideas of Creation. That difference is seen even in the highest religious achievements of the period. All through religion, the feeling of the sacred was touched by anarchy from the outer dark. [1]

It was as though Jupiter in all his descendant forms retreated into the maternal darkness to be superseded by a female immanence filled with ambiguity and with a face of many terrors. [2]

The ancient formulae intertwined, [3] tangled together as they were fitted to the needs of new conquests and new heraldic symbols. It was a time of struggle between beast-demons on the one side and the old prayers and invocations on the other.


I've bolded (and numbered) three bits that help form my opinion on what kinds of changes I would expect to see that fit Frank's description.

[1] This bit implies that, whatever other cultural changes took place during this period, religions in particular were feeling some kind of strain as a result of the context of the human race changing. Presumably this wouldn't only be some internal strife, but would materially involve the public calling into question orthodoxy that had too narrow a focus on Earth. I suppose we might argue that the "touched by anarchy from the outer dark" bit could maybe be a reference to a decline in the belief in religion, which we do see today to some extent. But the general tone here seems to be discussing the changing form of religion rather than the decline of religion, so I'm not sure that kind of interpretation fits.

[2] This part is more telling to me, as I really don't see the average person nowadays experiencing space travel (or the nature of outer space) as a thing involving terror. Mostly people seem to appreciate Hubble images and so forth as beautiful things to look at, and the tendency at the moment, if anything, is to romanticise the cosmos as almost a new form of visual art. Shows like Star Trek do touch upon the notion that it's dangerous out there in the universe, and I do think that one day people will viscerally feel this, but right now they seem not to, although the odd person you might speak to does have concerns about planet-destroying rogue asteroids.

[3] This is the most concrete cultural reference of the three, where what's described is the precursor to the new ecumenical movement. "The ancient formulae intertwined" seems to be a reference to what later became systems like Zensuffi, Buddislamism, and so forth, which implies a cross-pollination of older systems into new combinations. I definitely don't think we're seeing that right now, although on the other hand it might be hard to detect in the short term. We do have some cross-pollination of Hinduism (often through yoga) and Buddhism into Western culture, but so far those have remained niche and contained, meaning people who are into those tend to stick to them rather than to blend them with other systems. I hear that there is some interesting ecumenical activity going on within Christianity right now, where the Catholic, Lutheran, and Eastern Orthodox Churches are making certain ecumenical strides for the first time and trying to finding some common ground and begin to bridge the schism between them. Of all things I can think of this most closely matches what Dune describes, which is the CET meeting to find common ground between religions. However I'll add to this that the Christian ecumenical movement going on now seems to have begun some time prior to the moon landing and was probably (if I had to guess) precipitated more by WWII and the end of the age of colonialism. I don't think space travel has any relation to that movement at present, although it would be neat if scientific pursuits did begin to inform religion at some point.

Don't mean to blather on endlessly about this, Omph. Just trying to make a case that I'm not being an idiot about this but have reasons. But we can agree to disagree on this one :auto-crash:
Last edited by georgiedenbro on 19 Jan 2018 10:53, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby distrans » 19 Jan 2018 01:39

the US dollar invested in facism east and west show'd the catholic church easily bent to advocating for it either way...

as Apollo dragged on nasa invested enough landers educations that in the end we sent some decent geologists to the moon at the end there and science was done

the use of coal to power lightbulbs spurned a rise in slave prices and all the market driven reactions that demanded of the time

the british made alot of concessions to labor then that todays advocates for decent work conditions would concider superfluous

anarchy from the outer dark

hard to imagine a direction you cannot run with that one...

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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby ᴶᵛᵀᴬ » 21 Jan 2018 05:03


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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby Cpt. Aramsham » 05 May 2018 02:32

Arguing over what impact the moon landing actually had in retrospect seems rather pointless to me when Herbert wrote these lines in 1964 or -65, well before it actually happened. What's relevant is whether the cultural impact he describes was something he considered imminent (or already happening) at the time. I think it's likely that it was. This was at the high point of "the space age" as a cultural concept, and other science fiction writers (e.g. Bester, Ballard) were speculating wildly about the psychological effects of space travel. And it also seems likely that, like so many others, Herbert was expecting the space race to not only send men to the moon, but lead to manned exploration of the solar system (cf. 2001), with interstellar travel to follow as the natural next step. Or at least that he assumed this progress for the sake of the story.

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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby Cpt. Aramsham » 05 May 2018 03:03

Also, as to whether the changes to religion Herbert describes in fact took place, again it's important to remember when it was written: mid-sixties, in California (I think he'd returned from Mexico at this point, right?): pretty much ground zero for the New Age movement. Within the last ten years you'd seen the spread of UFO religions, you had cults started by science fiction writers, in just a couple of years Hair would proclaim the dawning of the Age of Aquarius... To quote myself:

Cpt. Aramsham wrote:FH was probably inspired by the religious turmoil of the period, when new religions, sects, cults and spiritual movements were springing up almost daily. Scientology is perhaps the most famous one to have survived (and FH was obviously familiar with it, given its science fiction origins and link with Analog magazine), but others such as Rastafari, Wicca and Nation of Islam were also relatively recent religions or sects that were increasing their profile at the time. (The Rastafari movement in particular has intriguing parallels to Dune, with a living Emperor - who started out as a Duke - being deified by a poor and oppressed people, but the timeline makes it unlikely that this religion specifically was a significant influence.)

Many of these modern religious movements were syncretic, such as Theosophism, Wicca, Rev. Moon's Unification Church, Unitarian Universalism, Baha'i (though its adherents deny it) and the spiritual movement later known as New Age. The thought of unifying the major world religions (or forming new, strange mixtures of them) was natural in that context.

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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby Freakzilla » 05 May 2018 13:29

Interesting link to Haile Selassie. Something new to think about... :think:
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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby georgiedenbro » 07 May 2018 13:05

Freakzilla wrote:Interesting link to Haile Selassie. Something new to think about... :think:


A few interesting tidbits from the Wiki article on him:

-He was a Duke, and eventually went on to become Emperor.
-His father's name was Makonnen, making his birth name Ras Tafari Makonnen.
-He did a grand tour in various desert countries that had some great renown.
-He Ethiopian monarchical lineage claims to trace itself back to King Solomon and Queen Sheba (curiously analogous to the Atreidi).
-There was a notable incident at one point where his authority was being challenged, and one governor in particular seems to have been pocketing coffee profits rather than remitting the proceeds to the crown as he was supposed to (the Baron's spice stockpile?).

And a fun fact for DS9 fans:
-Negus is the Ethiopian word for King :royalty-king:

Really good find on the Ras Tafari connection, I wonder whether it could be a total coincidence. He was apparently well-known even back in the 20's, so presumably FH would have known about him.
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Re: any idea when in earths history dune falls?

Postby Cpt. Aramsham » 09 May 2018 14:50

I think my reference to the timeline not quite fitting was based on Haile Selassie's visit to Jamaica (which I would have considered strong evidence of inspiration, since it seems to parallel the reception of the Atreides on Arrakis so closely) only happening in 1966. I'm sure Herbert had heard of him, and most likely of the Rastafari movement, in any case. It provides a good example of "politics and religion riding in the same cart".

It should be unnecessary to point out the parallel of ritual use of ganja/melange, and the similarity of the names are almost certainly coincidental, but still...

Incidentally, The Emperor by Ryszard Kapuściński is a classic and gripping account of the end of Selassie's reign, where he comes across as more of a Shaddam IV figure: ruling over an absurdly ossified court constantly engaged in petty vendettas against each other while ignoring the plight of the common people, until one day it all collapses.


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