Dune (Frank Herbert) and TSA (Bakker)

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« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2013, 01:36:49 pm »
Quote from: sologdin
i've said it before: 

on dune, the golden path is the means to some uncertain end for the shortening of the way.

on earwa, the shortest path is the means to some uncertain end for what volume VI will reveal as the goldening of the way.

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« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2013, 01:47:42 pm »
Quote from: Madness
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Im typing this as I think it, so it might be that half way down I will change my mind, but lets see were it takes us. The main issue I have with Moe being Paul is that Moe is not the prodigy. He is not the one to deliver the Dunyain from their mundane bonds and catupult them into the realm of the Absolute. There are so many obvious distinction that make him parralel Paul closely, but there is some break-down... or rather he is more of a combination of themes than simply one character.

To me, the issue is the fact that Paul is not Leto II. Leto II just seems to fictionally overshadow Paul in the way that Kellhus overshadows Moenghus the Elder. Paul incubates a long-term vision of the future unfolding of circumstance but Leto executes it.

I understand Paul is named Kwisatz Haderach. I think I could make a pretty good argument as to why the Bene Gesserit may have jumped the gun and assumed because Paul satisfied some of the variables - the gender thing, primarily. If we look at Paul's choices and the adherence to his visions following the overthrow of the Sardaukar on Arrakis, then certainly he is the fulcrum in time where the future begins to collapse on the inevitable.

Without Leto II, most of the it never actually comes to pass.

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Moe is also kind of a combination of Paul and Jessica. Denying your order, choosing another over your own tribe. Jessica trained and lead Paul to what he became, more or less. Sure she didn't know where exactly he would end up, but she trained him to be a mentat and a male with all the bene gesserit training. Moe fathers Kell in a similar way. He conditioned the grounds for Kell to walk on. He showed Kell the way to TTT, though he didn't know what would happen when he grasped it. He also probably thought Paul would bring balance to the force not destroy it, erm I mean bring more stability to TTT and help his father complete his goal rather than take it and warp it beyond recognition.

Just thinking aloud, bear with me.

I think you might be doing the extracurricular stretching here. Does Moenghus condition Kellhus ground like a parent or an oracle, say, John the Baptist?

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So Paul saw the golden path but made the conscious decision not to follow it. Did Moe do this?

No, but I'm not necessarily trying to use these parallels to prove any certain idea, just seeing if any of our combinations fit Bakker's narrative and offer us new insight.

Leto II and Ghanima spend most of Children wondering, if Paul is the Preacher, what actually drove him to the desert? I can almost hear Leto II saying... this is where the thought failed you.

Except it's not. Paul's visions encompass his single deviant choice - the Fremen would have excepted his leadership after Messiah, as his visions accounted for his blindness - and he sees his path beyond that point where prescience supposedly failed him, according to... everyone, basically, in the novels.

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Well, more importantly might be the reasons for Paul's actions. Why not choose the path that would forever lead humans to a better place? Why not save everyone, for eternity?
Leto believes its because he could not justify the worm transformation in order to make this path possible. That losing his humanity, becoming a different species, was too much for him to bare. Paul wanted to save his subjects, as any Atreides would, from death and suffering. And yet, he chose to ignore the Golden Path, so damning everyone.
Or, was it that the end did not justify the means? Paul saw the great war, another Jihad, that was too terrible. He spent his time alive trying to find a path to the future that did not cross this inevitability.

Perhaps, prescience does fail Paul for a time, though I'd argue otherwise - this is getting interesting, probably going to have to pull the books out soon. Remember, Leto II allows for suffering well beyond the next Fremen jihad in order to see the Golden Path through.

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Was this Moe's intention? Did he see the golden path, the shortest path, through the nexus of events( the Nexus being TTT rather than the path), but choose to find another, less bloody, more difficult way through? Did he know that he would likely fail, but that he must try regardless? Is his idea of the future, the one that delivers Earwa to the Inchoroi, truly the lesser of two evils, or was it just one evil over another?

I'm not sure the parallels are played out. One of my many considerations, leaning heavily on these analogies, obviously, is that The Unholy Consult will see another anti/climatic conversation, this time between Kellhus and Meppa.

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Not that I disagree entirely with your theory, Madness, but just that it is incomplete. Like you mentioned, there is a mashing together of themes and while a lot of Moe can be seen in Paul, I believe so too can a lot of Paul be seen there too.

No worries, Wilshire, I'm all over the place.

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In my OP, I mentioned that Kellhus is the Kwisatz Haderach (or Paul). Not, I suppose, in the sense that he has the genetic ability to see more than other Dunyain, but mostly that he is the prodigal son of the Dunyain, their penultimate achievement.
I dont think that Moe fits this motif very well. For one, Moe was sent out, but he was presumably fully 'controlled' by the Dunyain. He had, more or less, completed the training. He drank the punch. Kellhus, however, is kind of like Paul in that he is outside the Dunyain. The begrudgingly sent him out to his father, even though they would have wanted to keep and train him. Outside of their sphere of influence at a young age (I hope he was younger than Moe when he was sent out), he decided on a path of his own, damning the Dunyain and their practices. Sure Moe did this too, but I feel the link is stronger with Kell.

Interesting thoughts. I'd argue that the encountering the World outside of Ishual is enough to make any Dunyain more than their brethren - they become instant Players/Names in Earwa. I think alot of these analogies, if they exist, have yet to play out, as I wrote. For instance, this becomes a whole lot more valid, if Moenghus did know more of the unfolding of the Thousandfold Thought than Kellhus.

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But then Kell is distinctly like Leto in the ways you said, and I like that portion of your conclusion. I think its highly possible that Kell took the path his father would not, and it may likely have something to do with losing his humanity. Perhaps he will become the No-God like some have suggested, however I don't know how he would plan to save everyone like Leto's worm did, but that remains to be seen. What we do know if that Father and Son choose different paths out of TTT, and yet both thought that theirs was the only way to truly save humanity.

BTW the idea of the outside sandworm-ing Kell was lockesnow, not I. Is Kell in a skin that is not his own? Thus the heart, the halos, the metagnosis.

I'd suggest that you both have viable analogies to the Leto's "sandworming." We could distill that to something like "symbiosis?"

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But didn't Paul follow the only path? Then Leto comes along with another 'only path'. 'Only' here does not mean there are no other choices, but rather that no other choices are as good as the one each has chosen, which is largely subjective.

"'I was the Shortest Path.'

'No. You were the only path'" (TTT, p439).

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Moe perhaps sees farther along his chosen path, but Kell likely sees farther down his. They both know, in general, what will happen along both lines of causality and circumstance, but as the variables become more complex and more numerous, there might just not be enough time to compute all possibilities for all paths.
Then again this breaks down when you consider that Moe has had much more time to consider TTT and the paths out of it. It would be more likely that Time is a bigger factor in this equation. With so much more time Moe should have a greater understanding of where the paths through TTT lead, at least compared to Kell who basically picked the path me liked the most and ignored the other possibilities.
Though all that is mostly off topic.

Actually, most of these thoughts are direct inspiration for my making these ulterior analogies in the first place.

Let's try another suggestion for the Thousandfold Thought. If the Probability Trance is the most likely statistical outcome given any number of variables, then the futures that the Dunyain see eventually collapse, rather than unfold. By that consideration, there is truly only one future. One need only know the "most objective circumstance," the "truest truth," and then act accordingly. Think of it like Unified Theory and forgive my terrible communication.

In light of this, the Thousandfold Thought is likely a sudden, inevitable emergence, the collapse of probabilities (probably ;)) into a equal or greater number of certainties.

Moenghus had a solid twentyish years exploring the Probability Trance and conditions the ground for Kellhus so that he doesn't have to spend that time realizing the Thought on his own.

As does Paul make fertile the ground for Leto II - but I think I'm just rapping here too.

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The real questions would be if the blinding gave him sight. With Paul, when he became blind he no longer saw the now. Rather, he could only see his visions. His vision became the present and future. But what if Paul did not go to the dessert, and Leto was raised under Paul's tutelage. Eventually Leto would have chosen the Golden Path, and Paul's reality, his 'pure prescience', would have broken down. He would have become blind in the metaphysical as he was already blinded physically. Who sees farther then?

Isn't it that now matches his visions exactly? Excepting in the single instance, where the visions intend do fail Paul - only because of his initial inability to trust them as truth - and Leto II gets him over the oracular hump.

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I agree that TUC will have a lot of similarities with God Emperor. The Preacher, the sacrifise, the collapse of the fathers regime under the son's hand. Perhaps Kelmomas is Leto though with the Atreides, I mean Anasorimbor, family compassion stripped away making him much more 'evil'.

I was thinking about this as a possible idea you'd bring back - Lol... completely true and equally freaky.

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Which incarnation of prescience from TSA would Dune fall under? The prescient of Leto and others is more like the Gods/Outside/WLW. This, because the Dune prescience is more of a Gift, something that just happens, rather than a cold and calculated future of possibilities. It doesn't matter that much though, since the amount to about the same thing.

+1, sir.

Slinging thoughts, oh yeah.

What Came Before

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« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2013, 01:47:54 pm »
Quote from: Madness
Also, quick thought before work in rereading part of your post. I think, that perhaps, you made a third analogy above - prescience is like the Dreams, prophecy in Dune reflecting the mundane circumstances of the Oracle, rather than the miraculous, further "reveals" according to physical status.

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« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:05 pm »
Quote from: Wilshire
Quote from: Jorge
I once made a picture with all of the influences I could detect in Bakker's work. It was huge. It can be largely be thought of as a mix between the Bible, Tolkien, Herbert and good dose of HR Giger just was extra kick. The philosophical influences are very numerous, but at its heart, the first trilogy is a celebration of skepticism and doubt.

Any chance you still have that map laying around somewhere. I'd even see if I couldn't make it into an electronic, editable version ( using mind42.com ), if you could dig it up.

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« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:21 pm »
Quote from: Wilshire
Oh look there is me talking about the mindmap. Oops, guess I should stop asking Jorge to find it :P ive done so in a few threads now.

I'm not done with you Madness, I swear. I've just not had the time to give your post justice until recently.

One small tidbit though.

page 241 WLW, Psatma Nannaferi, Mother-Supreme.
"The Goddess waits, Snakehead, and you are but a mote before her patience!"

Bakker used the word mote to describe Meppa in front of a Woman goddess. I find this peculiar, because that specific word was used many, many times when talking about the Bene Gesserit and their far flung knowledge. The first time when Jessica goes through the water-agony with her unborn children.

Why mote? Must have been on purpose.
Also, cmon, mother-supreme? :P. Get your own titles Bakker, Frank covered all the mother-whatevers in his series...  :)

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« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:30 pm »
Quote from: glottalstop
Quote from: Madness
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Moenghus had a solid twentyish years exploring the Probability Trance and conditions the ground for Kellhus so that he doesn't have to spend that time realizing the Thought on his own.

As does Paul make fertile the ground for Leto II


I thought the same thing. Dune &c are a bit foggy so I don't know if this really works, depends on how Paul talks before he dies. Paul is contained within the God Emperor, who begins in a discrete sense when the first mind grasps enough of the future to see its vast shape. There is very little difference between a Paul that is prescient beyond Leto II's death and the God Emperor himself, he is the Kwisatz Haderach.(should I add that to my dictionary, banish the wormy red lines? Is this one of those subtly important decisions that will impact my life in various unforeseen episodes?)

Mapping characters to each other directly doesn't work for me explicatively. But! But it does provide different angles into each fiction. World. Thing.

Is Kellhus's impending doom Just Part of The Plan™?
Will all the shortsighted adults ever see that sweet Kelmomas was just undergoing an early sort of Dunyain puberty? That he really didn't mean that. He's really sorry and seems sincere.

I can't make comparisons without seeing the differences. The most nagging one to me right now is structural. Kellhus, the center of events in the first trilogy. Kellhus, the godling who's coming of age we saw through his own eyes. Kellhus... has disappeared. He only exists through the eyes of others.

Is the reader as blind to him as the Gods are to the No-God?

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but I think I'm just rapping here too.

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« Reply #21 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:41 pm »
Quote from: Madness
Cheers, GS. I can't help but laugh as I hear your phoneme.

I'm definitely foggy right now, living on bout no sleep but you strike some interesting thoughts. Providing different angles allow for us to grasp at the God, after all.

Is Kelmomas Leto? Is Kellhus' fading an inversion of KH's emersion?

Like your rhymes.

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« Reply #22 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:49 pm »
Quote from: Wilshire
Regarding The Thousandfold Thought and and Leto's Golden Path:

This was debated a bit in the TTT thread elsewhere but I felt it would fit better here.
Here goes.

There is a fundamental difference in the Dunyain probability trance (PT) and the Dune prescience (DP). This distinction becomes important for my later theory so lets straighten it out first. Although the outcome is more or less the same, the PT is more like a mathematical summation of probabilities while DP is more like a polaroid snapshot of the future (and they only get one shot). In the short term, these two are basically the same. Short term, btw, is extremely relative here considering that Dune is like 10k+ years while TSA is only a century or two (thats all that matters in this discussion at least).

So the short term for Dune could range from a guild navigators journey through space, to the upper limit of Paul Atreides prescience (maybe 100 years).
Short term of TSA is pretty much any use of the probability trance that doesn't lead too/through TTT.

The analogy of PT and DP starts to break after that short term limit is approached. The issue is that the PT is more of a continuous process, measurement unceasing, opposed to the DP which is stagnant. In Dune the prescience user is locked into their vision of the future. They do not possess the ability to change what they have seen (though this is more of a metaphysical limitation, they oracles also would likely not have the mental capacity to do what the Dunyain can even if it were possible).
In the short term, this isn't really much of an issue. The Dunyain evaluate each data point used in the PT, but this doesn't effect short term goals. It is the piling of chance and mischance that cause deviations from vision of the future. While the Dunyain are able to see and correct this, once the oracle's of Dune see the future they are locked into that future.

So then when a major leap is made to try and see the future in Dune, as we have seen, several things can happen. First of all, the visions inevitably start to deviate. Because they only get the on vision of their future, they either go through blind, or try and force events to occur that will allow, or not allow, that vision to come true.

I believe that Leto knew of this problem, mainly from his study of Paul. He did several things to ensure the his golden path survived through the ages that Paul failed to do, allowing for an outcome that was, again, very similar to TTT but still different on a fundamental level.
He began by avoiding the limits of the DP by keeping his prediction small (at least to begin with). Instead of taking one big snapshot of the future, he took lots of small ones. I'd say glimpses into the future the length of each Duncan Idaho's life as he was re-created.

Duncan becoming extremely important in this plot. In order to maintain the monopoly of prescient power, that ensures the continuation of his golden path, Leto needed to "out predict" all other oracles. Why? Because as seen by Paul's downfall, he who sees farther is (in most cases) more correct. There doesn't seem to be room for more than one or two actual futures in Dune, so the most powerful oracle kind of takes on the role of ruler.
To ensure that most other predictions or futuresights would inevitably fail Leto did something rather clever. My theory: he used Duncan as his focus. Without him none of it would have been possible. By creating a ghola that lived through the ages Leto was able to have an important anchor in all of his visions. When he combined this with the no-nouns/people that he intentionally developed, Leto effectively made himself the only one able to see the true outcome of events in the far far future. All those Siona genes would mess up most far seeing futures without a proper reference that could be traced. Because Idaho was one of the only ones guaranteed to not be effected by these genes Leto had quite the monopoly. But I kind of digressed...

So PT is like an integral to the DP limit of some finite number of inputs. Although Leto did a lot of work to secure his GP and managed to squeeze out an outcome that would have been similar to TTT. To continue with the math analogy, Leto's prescience was a limit of a huge number of variables, and although not perfect compared to an integral, it was pretty damn close.

TL;DR version.

Dune prescience and the Dunyain probability trance are fundementally very different, but Leto's Golden Path and The Thousandfold Thought end up being about the same thing.

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« Reply #23 on: June 03, 2013, 01:48:59 pm »
Quote from: Madness
Quote from: Cu'jara Cinmoi, 2006
Inspiration-wise, the correspondances are certainly not one to one the way you line them up, Grallon. Kellhus, for instance, actually owes very little to Paul Atriedes, though the skin-spies are obvious rip-offs of Herbert's face-dancers. The Scylvendi owe nothing to the Huns, but quite abit to the Scythians and Sarmatians. I see Shigek as decidedly more Egyptian than Mesopotamian. And the Inchoroi owe nothing to the Tleilaxu.

Quote from: Rider, 2005
Was The God Emperor of Dune an inspiration in any way Scott?

Quote from: Cu'jara Cinmoi
Huge, Rider - though I didn't particularly like any of the books following Dune. They literally changed my life.

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« Reply #24 on: June 03, 2013, 01:49:11 pm »
Quote from: Duskweaver
Quote from: Madness
The Scylvendi owe nothing to the Huns, but quite abit to the Scythians and Sarmatians.
He might have intended this to be the case, but the Scylvendi as he actually portrays them in the books are much closer to Huns (and other historical Turkic steppe tribes) than they are to Scythians and Sarmatians (and other historical Aryan steppe tribes).

I'll admit that the name 'Scylvendi' sounds vaguely Indo-European, though.

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« Reply #25 on: June 05, 2013, 04:09:55 pm »
Shameless dump 8).
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Srancy

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« Reply #26 on: June 09, 2013, 02:31:27 am »
Good job, Madness

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« Reply #27 on: June 11, 2013, 12:58:57 pm »
Thanks, Srancy ;).
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« Reply #28 on: August 21, 2013, 04:46:02 pm »
Is Mimara Siona and will Achamian and Mimara destory Kellhus in TUC a la Duncan and Siona in GEOD...
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Wilshire

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« Reply #29 on: August 21, 2013, 11:10:08 pm »
I think the Duncan/Akka comparison is much stronger than Siona/Mimara. Siona was related to Duncan and was bred specifically to end Letto II's reign. She also had a power that made her immune prescience. Unless Mimara is Akka's daughter (i really hope not) and TJE somehow destroys Kellhus's ability to see her in his thousandfold thought, then I don't see it.

Too soon to tell. More information needed.
One of the other conditions of possibility.