Monday, January 25, 2010

DUNE 20th time and still GREAT

Dune by Frank Herbert, I think is the best ScFi ever written.

Big statement I know but I think it is true!

If you have not read it I would say to you just read the first one, even if you do not read the whole series just read the first one.

I am re-reading it for, I think and this is a conservative estimate, the 20Th time, that works out to once a year since I was 12 and I know there are years when I have read it twice.

And it never gets boring and every time I read it I get something new from it.

In the past the one of the things that has always resonated with me is the Litany against Fear from the Bene Gesserit rite;

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."

That has brought me comfort over the years and has helped me be less fearful. But this time as I was reading the book a new thing stood out for me.

The first Law of Mentat is;

"A process cannot be understood by stopping it. Understanding must move with the flow of the process, must join it and flow with it."

And now I have a new idea to mull over in my life and see how this helps me change.

I find it amazing that a person could create in his head a universe of such depth and layer and history. That from a place on earth, because that is the start, he could imagine a future like this for humans. Our history is interwoven in this future, bits of us make it into this realm.

Maybe that is why it is so easy to follow. Maybe we can see that our future could go something like this.

I have a deep fondness for the Bene Gesserit, a school of metal and physical training mainly for female students. I would love to be a Bene Gesserit, although I have deep reservations about their work, in their quest to keep humane bloodlines safe, they have forgot the "humane' and seek out the Divine. The Kwisatz Haderach.

I have deep feelings of love for many of the people in this book. Yes I know I just called them people and not characters, but to me over the years they have become real. I feel a savage joy in their victories and I still cry when some of them die. I feel for the Lady Jessica and her place in the world, I want a different path for the Duke Leto, I feel for Dr Yueh, knowing what the Harkonnens can do you understand how he does what he does. The Dukes main men are men I would like to drink with. And Alia, the one who was awoken early, for her I feel such empathy.

And they aren't even the main characters!! Are you starting to see the pull?

Since Frank Herbert's death more books have been added to the world of Dune. I like these books and they add to the fabric of the legend. But they do not have the touch of a Master. His son Brain Herbert and author Kevin J Anderson just do not have his tone. But that is to be expected and I think they have done a wonderful job.

I really look forward to reading some of Brian Herberts non Dune novels.

This is an article I found on line and I think it will do a better job then me at sharing one the ideas that I find most interesting in his books.

Also there is the group of Hidden Jews that are in his books, I found this wonderful and amazing. To me it rang true, that no matter what happened to them or how they where hounded they survived.

A warning though, if like me you go and google this be very careful. A bunch of wanker white power idiots and anti-Semite F&#@ers have hi-jacked this aspect of his work and you might like me end up on a page that makes you sick.

There is so much I would say about these book and why I love them, but as always my inability to express how I feel in words eloquently pulls me up and I just say to you read this book, give it a try and see what you see.

At some other point I will get on to the David Lynch movie. I really liked it but other fans hate so it will be a whole other post!

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