The Need for Spice

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georgiedenbro
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The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 26 Sep 2014 11:26

I'll start with something a bit speculative for my first new thread here:

Why do the BG need spice? We know that once a BG has used spice for the overdose no other drug will work again, and any children born to them subsequently might even be born with the addiction as well. Freak has often asked why the BG didn't just wean themselves off spice, especially during Leto II's reign and afterward, and just go back to using the old drugs.

Might it be the case that a RM with memories of spice addiction would remember the spice's potency and even having never used it be unable to make use of other substances any more? If this was the case, then a BG could use alternative drugs for the training and to achieve the agony, but then upon accessing OM the spice addiction would immediately return along with the experiences of the spice-addicted RM's in OM.

What do you think?
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 26 Sep 2014 12:15

Haha! The memory of addiction, huh? Interesting, I've never thought about that. I guess you could compare it to a recovering addict. An addict can remain sober although there is always that temptation in the back of their mind.

I think the answer I've settled on is that the spice just works better than other methods and additionally has the geriatric benefit.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 26 Sep 2014 13:10

This topic has stuck in my craw so long I scarcely recognize it .
Yeah, especially during LetoIIs reign, why the fuck didn't the BG switch to the 'other drugs'
that wouldn't work after using spice?! The only answer, it was necessary. Looks like after
Paul, the 'other drugs' simply ceased to exist.

To be fair, is there any where else besides chapter one where these others are discussed?
Because I want to say they were discussing truthsense. not the differences between people
and RMs.
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: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 26 Sep 2014 13:18

D Pope wrote:This topic has stuck in my craw so long I scarcely recognize it .
Yeah, especially during LetoIIs reign, why the fuck didn't the BG switch to the 'other drugs'
that wouldn't work after using spice?! The only answer, it was necessary. Looks like after
Paul, the 'other drugs' simply ceased to exist.

To be fair, is there any where else besides chapter one where these others are discussed?
Because I want to say they were discussing truthsense. not the differences between people
and RMs.


The last chapter of Dune:

"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."


And for reference, the first chapter:

"I'll handle this, Jessica," the old woman said. "Now, lad, do you know
about the Truthsayer drug?"
"You take it to improve your ability to detect falsehood," he said. "My
mother's told me."
"Have you ever seen truthtrance?"
He shook his head. "No."
"The drug's dangerous," she said, "but it gives insight. When a Truthsayer's
gifted by the drug, she can look many places in her memory -- in her body's
memory. We look down so many avenues of the past . . . but only feminine
avenues." Her voice took on a note of sadness. "Yet, there's a place where no
Truthsayer can see. We are repelled by it, terrorized. It is said a man will
come one day and find in the gift of the drug his inward eye. He will look where
we cannot -- into both feminine and masculine pasts."
"Your Kwisatz Haderach?"
"Yes, the one who can be many places at once: the Kwisatz Haderach. Many men
have tried the drug . . . so many, but none has succeeded."
"They tried and failed, all of them?"
"Oh, no." She shook her head. "They tried and died."
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Toccs » 27 Sep 2014 08:28

Also

Scenes of brutal ferocity opened to her like the petals of a terrible flower. And she saw the thread of the past carried by Sayyadina after Sayyadina--first by word of mouth, hidden in the sand chanteys, then refined through their own Reverend Mothers with the discovery of the poison drug on Rossak . . . and now developed to subtle strengthen Arrakis in the discovery of the Water of Life.

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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 27 Sep 2014 15:51

Toccs wrote:Also

Scenes of brutal ferocity opened to her like the petals of a terrible flower. And she saw the thread of the past carried by Sayyadina after Sayyadina--first by word of mouth, hidden in the sand chanteys, then refined through their own Reverend Mothers with the discovery of the poison drug on Rossak . . . and now developed to subtle strengthen Arrakis in the discovery of the Water of Life.



Good catch, forgot about that one. :clap:
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 27 Sep 2014 21:29

Freakzilla wrote:
Toccs wrote:Also

Scenes of brutal ferocity opened to her like the petals of a terrible flower. And she saw the thread of the past carried by Sayyadina after Sayyadina--first by word of mouth, hidden in the sand chanteys, then refined through their own Reverend Mothers with the discovery of the poison drug on Rossak . . . and now developed to subtle strengthen Arrakis in the discovery of the Water of Life.



Good catch, forgot about that one. :clap:

Agreed! Great catch!
So it wasn't just the spice agony that makes a Rev Momma, there were others.
Why not be rid of the spice when the Tyrant held sway? I'm just chalking it up
as a mistake born of Franks desire to use the spice as a metaphor for oil.

This seems to answer another question that's been asked in a forgotten place,
rogue Fremen RMs may not be BG at all.
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.
-Omphalos

georgiedenbro
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 28 Sep 2014 01:09

D Pope wrote:So it wasn't just the spice agony that makes a Rev Momma, there were others.
Why not be rid of the spice when the Tyrant held sway? I'm just chalking it up
as a mistake born of Franks desire to use the spice as a metaphor for oil.


Frank also mentioned that spice was a metaphor for water, or even any other commodity in limited supply. I'm quite certain keeping spice in the picture wasn't a mistake, even though the literal need for it doesn't quite match up to the metaphoric need for it as the series progresses.

This seems to answer another question that's been asked in a forgotten place,
rogue Fremen RMs may not be BG at all.


I would agree, providing the RM's had no BG RM's in their lineage at all. I have reason to suspect, though, that they did and that therefore they were, indeed, true BG agents.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 28 Sep 2014 07:29

Yeah, I thought about that. The idea that the BG got their OM from the Fremen
might even have legs. Just to be clear, do RMs have ancestral memories or the
memories of other RMs who shared before? The two seem to run together in the
later books.
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.
-Omphalos

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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 28 Sep 2014 10:01

They have their own ancestral memories after The Agony, then they can also Share OM with other RMs in the presence of spice essence or extreme danger.

I don't think it matters whether the ancestors were Fremen or BG, one would still develop a similar outlook simply due to the thousands of years of memories. Wild Fremen RMs would of course hold no loyalty to the sisterhood, just have a similar reservoir of memories.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 28 Sep 2014 12:20

I think it's the loyalty to the Sisterhood we're addressing. I suspect, but can't be sure, that the Fremen RM's were loyal to the Sisterhood.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 28 Sep 2014 17:29

I don't think it would make them loyal but they would be on the same page, so to speak.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 28 Sep 2014 21:28

Fair enough!
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 29 Sep 2014 08:16

Freakzilla wrote:I don't think it would make them loyal but they would be on the same page, so to speak.

Sympathetic to the BG cause? I guess I can buy that.

Freak wrote:They have their own ancestral memories after The Agony, then they can also Share OM with
other RMs in the presence of spice essence or extreme danger.

I just meant, as far as Dune is concerned, it looks like ancestral memories were added to BGs bag of tricks much later.
Not so with the pre-born, thus adding to the threat of abomination.
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.
-Omphalos

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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 29 Sep 2014 09:31

D Pope wrote:
Freak wrote:They have their own ancestral memories after The Agony, then they can also Share OM with
other RMs in the presence of spice essence or extreme danger.

I just meant, as far as Dune is concerned, it looks like ancestral memories were added to BGs bag of tricks much later.
Not so with the pre-born, thus adding to the threat of abomination.


Sure, possibly the same time the Zensunni Wanderers discovered the Rossak Poison. No telling really, but I think it would be safe to say it was more than ninety generations before the events in Dune. :wink:
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 29 Sep 2014 10:18

Dune Appendix II wrote:The major dams against anarchy in these times were the embryo Guild, the
Bene Gesserit and the Landsraad, which continued its 2,000-year record of
meeting in spite of the severest obstacles. The Guild's part appears clear: they
gave free transport for all Landsraad and C.E.T. business. The Bene Gesserit
role is more obscure. Certainly, this is the time in which they consolidated
their hold upon the sorceresses, explored the subtle narcotics, developed pranabindu
training and conceived the Missionaria Protectiva
, that black arm of
superstition. But it is also the period that saw the composing of the Litany
against Fear and the assembly of the Azhar Book, that bibliographic marvel that
preserves the great secrets of the most ancient faiths.


It seems to me quite likely that the BG ability to compile a book of ancient secrets might have been made possible by recent access to OM, no? Since this was also the time that they explored 'subtle narcotics' we might expect that these include awareness-spectrum drugs. I also wonder whether the MP could have been properly conceived without knowledge from OM, but this point is certainly less clear. I think it might be fair to suggest that the BG discovered the agony shortly after the Jihad.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 29 Sep 2014 18:40

Yup, just enough to give you ideas...
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: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 30 Sep 2014 06:33

It's my own personal theory that the MP influence and the poison drug introduction to the Fremen could have come from the same RM.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby lotek » 30 Sep 2014 09:22

It had to be someone who understood how the MP works well enough to be able to change things without completely messing it up.
At some point I thought it was Kynes, but he recognized this and used it, so it pre dates him.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby D Pope » 30 Sep 2014 11:38

Toccs wrote:Also

Scenes of brutal ferocity opened to her like the petals of a terrible flower. And she saw the thread of the past carried by Sayyadina after Sayyadina--first by word of mouth, hidden in the sand chanteys, then refined through their own Reverend Mothers with the discovery of the poison drug on Rossak . . . and now developed to subtle strengthen Arrakis in the discovery of the Water of Life.

I guess this could go both ways, before looking more closely I thought it meant Fremen RMs.
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.
-Omphalos

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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 30 Sep 2014 11:58

D Pope wrote:
Toccs wrote:Also

Scenes of brutal ferocity opened to her like the petals of a terrible flower. And she saw the thread of the past carried by Sayyadina after Sayyadina--first by word of mouth, hidden in the sand chanteys, then refined through their own Reverend Mothers with the discovery of the poison drug on Rossak . . . and now developed to subtle strengthen Arrakis in the discovery of the Water of Life.

I guess this could go both ways, before looking more closely I thought it meant Fremen RMs.


It sounds like that to me too, except for the fact that we know the MP influenced Fremen culture. So either the Fremen had their own wild RM's and then the BG came, or the original Fremen RM's were BG. Either way it sounds like the Fremen had RM's well before they came to Arrakis, which also suggests they would have had no inkling about the fact that Arrakis wasn't always a desert.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 30 Sep 2014 16:33

The original Fremen RM probably wouldn't have been BG because they would have memories of how the BG MP had manipulated them.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 30 Sep 2014 18:39

Freakzilla wrote:The original Fremen RM probably wouldn't have been BG because they would have memories of how the BG MP had manipulated them.


And if they did? Surely then they would have the BG loyalty and would keep the secret. I'm not sure at all that the Fremen RM's weren't guiding things along themselves. The only fact I know of to show that the Fremen RM's had no direct BG descent is the fact that they did the agony differently than the BG did. But that could also be explained by them having developed a different tradition among the Fremen.
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby Freakzilla » 01 Oct 2014 06:51

georgiedenbro wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:The original Fremen RM probably wouldn't have been BG because they would have memories of how the BG MP had manipulated them.


And if they did? Surely then they would have the BG loyalty and would keep the secret. I'm not sure at all that the Fremen RM's weren't guiding things along themselves. The only fact I know of to show that the Fremen RM's had no direct BG descent is the fact that they did the agony differently than the BG did. But that could also be explained by them having developed a different tradition among the Fremen.


I thought about that right after making that post but got distracted. I think it's possible that the Fremen RM did know of the BG MP manipulation and kept it secret for the good of the tribe.

Maybe it was the other way around? Could a BG MP adept have stolen the Zensunni Wanderer's Agony on Rossak? :think:
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Re: The Need for Spice

Postby georgiedenbro » 01 Oct 2014 09:22

Freakzilla wrote:
georgiedenbro wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:The original Fremen RM probably wouldn't have been BG because they would have memories of how the BG MP had manipulated them.


And if they did? Surely then they would have the BG loyalty and would keep the secret. I'm not sure at all that the Fremen RM's weren't guiding things along themselves. The only fact I know of to show that the Fremen RM's had no direct BG descent is the fact that they did the agony differently than the BG did. But that could also be explained by them having developed a different tradition among the Fremen.


I thought about that right after making that post but got distracted. I think it's possible that the Fremen RM did know of the BG MP manipulation and kept it secret for the good of the tribe.

Maybe it was the other way around? Could a BG MP adept have stolen the Zensunni Wanderer's Agony on Rossak? :think:


If that were so it would mean the BG only had access to OM quite recently compared to the BJ era. Since the KH program had been around for 90 generations (2,500-3,500 years?) I think it would be fair to say that the BG had RM's among them since then. But if the Zensunni were on Rossak at that time I guess it could fit. The passage certainly suggests that the discovery of the Rossak drug ushered in the time of Fremen RM's, and so we seem to have three possibilities: 1) RM-hood was discovered then. 2) The Fremen developed RM capabilities completely separately from the BG, which would make that a remarkable event. 3) The BG were there on Rossak and discovered that particular drug along with the Fremen, but they already had RM's from using inferior drugs. Maybe the Fremen were the only ones at the time who knew how to synthesize it and so the BG 'made a deal' with them and gave them RM's to be their priestesses? It's even possible the BG made RM's out of Fremen in order to take control of the drug production to ensure the BG would get it for themselves.

It's all fun speculation. I guess with this being said my gut leans towards #3 since it involves the least coincidence. It would mean that the Fremen RM's did have BG memories going back to Rossak, and that the BG had been manipulating the Fremen back then, just like everyone else did.
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