Chapter 13

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Freakzilla
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Chapter 13

Postby Freakzilla » 01 Mar 2008 12:25

How sad it was that the Shadout of old had become today's Fish Speaker. And a
true crysknife had been used to bind a servant more strongly to her master. He
knew that some thought his Fish Speakers were really priestesses.

-Leto's answer to the Bene Gesserit.

Nayla finally makes it up the tower to see Leto. He tells her his religion is an obsenity and it distgusts him and he wishes it could die with him. Nayla is not shaken. He says religions rot from within and create radicals and fanatics like her. She thanks him for the compliment which eases his anger. He asks her about Topri's value as a spy, Nayla says he's a worm. Leto asks if that's what she calls him when with the rebelion. Nayla says she obeys him in all things. Nayla doesn't think Siona suspects her. She thinks Leto has summoned her to test her faith. Leto wants to know if Siona is ready to be tested, Nayla thinks the Fish Speakers need her and he shouldn't test her too early for fear of loosing her. Siona has sent of the Stolen Journals to be translated and is studying the citadel charts to find his spice hoard. Leto confirms that such a hoard exists and the planet would be destroyed if someone tried to steal it. No faction would survive the chaos that would follow. He orders her not to try to stop Siona from trying to steal it, she sees this as the ultimate test. He orders her to defend Siona's life with her own and this is why he has given her a crysknife. Nayla's faith is restored and she has confirmed what his fading vision of Siona cannot. Siona is nearly ready.

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Re: Chapter 13

Postby Freakzilla » 16 Jul 2012 11:20

No revisions.
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Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
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georgiedenbro
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Re: Chapter 13

Postby georgiedenbro » 19 Aug 2015 12:30

This is a cool passage that got me thinking:

The climb, he knew, should be starting to tire even Nayla. She paused at last to rest, stopping at a point two steps past the three-quarter mark, precisely the place where she rested every time. It was part of her precision, one of the reasons he had brought her back from the distant garrison on Seprek.


On Arrakis it was necessary in the past to move always in unpatterned steps to avoid attracting the attention of Shai Hulud. We can look at this metaphorically if we like, perhaps by way of observing that movement in predictable ways makes a people easy to identify and control, and that 'the beast within' seeks eventually to stamp out regularity and pattern (which is described by Mohiam in Dune in terms of the universe needing to mix up its genetics through another Jihad). But either way here we have a passage describing a woman of precise regularity and predictability, and indeed she has clearly attracted the attention of the Shai Hulud that is Leto! But insofar as Leto's plans involve a forced simplicity of life, Nayla may well be the ultimate example of the kind of humanity he's forced into being: obedient, efficient and tamed. She is so under his control we even have passages like this one:

"Religions create radicals and fanatics like you!"
"Thank You, Lord."


At first she seems to be a most admirable person and respected by Leto, but towards the end I get a different message entirely:

He stared with fascination at Nayla's rigid body. Her eyes were empty of everything except adoration.
The ultimate rhetorical despotism . . . and I despise it!


By this point I feel more like Nayla is someone to be pitied rather than admired, because her great gifts are spent in obedience to nothing more than a trick of her own belief. This is the same thing Paul attracted from his own followers, and while Dune and DM didn't really get deeply into what Paul felt about having people believe in him and follow him, here Leto makes it very clear that being worshipped and deified blindly by people is anathema to what he wants for humanity. Nayla, then, is the opposite of Leto's concept of ideal humanity, however much she does serve his goals.

The big difference between Paul and Leto was described by Leto as Paul never having really been a true Fremen. Paul cared more for individuals at times than for the future of humanity, and in this sense Leto is more ruthless and also compassionate at the same time in the broad sense. Compare Nayla with Stilgar, for instance. In DM Paul takes steps to avoid Stil falling into the trap of effectively being his slave, whereas here Leto apparently recognizes the need to use Nayla and not to try to help her stand up for herself. Paul's respect for Stilgar trumped his need for blind followers, while Leto's distaste for blind followers is trumped by his long-term needs. This gives us a taste, perhaps, of what Leto means when he says he is trying to teach humanity how to make long-term decisions. It may well involve the need to ignore compassion in the present tense, and I can entirely see how Paul would reject this even though it might mean doom for the human race. Paul didn't even bother exploring the futures where he behaved like this, because at the thought of using others like slaves for the sake of some future he probably dismissed it as simply "unacceptable." For my part I wonder whether Paul was entirely wrong, notwithstanding the fact that Leto had a better sense of the dangers of short-term compassion. Is it really valid to sacrifice the people of the present for the sake of a future that doesn't yet exist?
"um-m-m-ah-h-h-hm-m-m-m!"

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Re: Chapter 13

Postby Freakzilla » 20 Aug 2015 06:32

georgiedenbro wrote:Is it really valid to sacrifice the people of the present for the sake of a future that doesn't yet exist?


Especially if that future was created by the oracle in a vision. :wink:
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Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman


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