Friday, December 12, 2008

More granules of wisdom from the hordes of Dune.

*"When I made this choice what were my expectations?"

*"Safaris through ancestral memories teach me many things. The patterns, ahhh, the patterns. Liberal bigots are the ones who trouble me most. I distrust the extremes. Scratch a conservative and you find someone who prefers the past over any future. Scratch a liberal and find a closet aristocrat. It's true! Liberal governments always develop into aristocracies. The bureaucracies betray the true intent of people who form such governments. Right from the first, the little people who formed the governments which promised to equalize the social burdens found themselves suddenly in the hands of bureaucratic aristocracies. Of course all bureaucracies follow this pattern, but what a hypocrisy to find this even under a communized banner. Ahh, well, if patterns teach me anything it's that patterns are repeated."

*"People will try to understand me and to frame me in their words. they will seek truth. But the truth always carries the ambiguity of the words used to express it."

*"If you find a truth, even a temporary one, it can demand that you make painful changes."

*"These journals of which you speak, for whom are they written?"
"For posterity after the span of millennia. I personalize those distant readers. I think of them as distant cousins filled with family curiosities. They are intent on unraveling the dramas which only I can recount. They want to make the personal connections to their own lives. They want the meanings, the truth! . . . What is a diary, a journal? Words."

*"Forcing the issue is the surest way of losing what I treasure most in her. She must come to me with all her strengths intact."

*"Laws tend to be temporary over the long haul. There is no such thing as rule-governed creativity."

*"I am not sure what the events in my journals may signify to your times. I only know that my journals have suffered oblivion and that the events which I recount have undoubtedly been submitted to historical distortion for eons. I assure you the the ability to view our futures can become a bore. Even to be thought of as a god, as I certainly was, can become ultimately boring. It has occurred to me more than once that holy boredom is good and sufficient reason for the invention of free will."

*"The thing you must trust about Siona is her creativity. She can create the new and beautiful. One always trusts the truly creative. . . . You always know the creative because it is revealed openly. Concealment betrays the existence of another force entirely."

*"Sometimes you do not know what to think of me. Am I all powerful and all-prescient? You bring me these dibs and dabs and you wonder: Does he already know this? If he does why do I bother? But I have ordered you to report such things. Is your obedience not instructive?"

*"Wealth is a tool of freedom. But the pursuit of wealth is the way to slavery."

*"Until the sandworm reigns once more on Arrakis" or until Christ comes to reign on earth, "We will have tested ourselves by then with a profound experience shared by all. We will have learned that a thing which can happen on one planet can happen on any planet."

(this phrasing of "profound experience" was in a place where most would put "trail" or "adversity." How much dearer are all these things when called something so positive as a "profound experience!")

*"Don't you understand about death?"
"Help me, Lord," she whispered.
"It is the most profound experience of any creature. . . .And it is the survivors who maintain the most light and poignant hold upon the beauties of living. Women know this more often than men because birth is the reflection of death."

*"Without readily available violence, men have few ways of testing how they will meet that final experience. Something is missing."

*" When I need to identify rebels, I look for men with principles. . . . Principles are what you fight for. Most men go through life unchallenged, except at the final moment. They have so few unfriendly arenas in which to test themselves."

*"A bad administrator is more concerned with reports than with decisions. he wants the record which he can display as an excuse for his errors."

*"Anything and anyone can fail but brave good friends help."

All of these are quotes from Lord Leto II, The God Emperor of Dune written by Frank Herbert.

I'm not even finished with the book yet!

1 comment:

CowboyBob said...

Thought provoking. Hmmmmmm.