Le Bene Gesserit by Frank Herbert Dune, published in August 1965, is a former sister organization that has explored the limits of human evolutionary potential with great success. Through arduous physical and mental discipline, they have achieved levels of martial and psychic prowess that border on the supernatural. One of their abilities, the Voice, gives the listener an overwhelming compulsion to accomplish a task that has been described to him.
From a distance, their public speaking bears a striking similarity to the mental tricks the Jedi used on the weak-minded, but the differences are significant, many of which are rooted in the traditions and belief systems of the organizations themselves. Ultimately, this asymmetry will influence which form of persuasion is the most powerful.
Where does the power of Dune’s voice come from?
The historical context of Dune takes place 20,000 years in the future of Earth, where man has conquered the means of intergalactic travel, made possible by the technological monopoly of the Spacing Guild, made possible by their dependence on the mixture of spices. The spice, among other things, increases mental acuity and allows Guild navigators to plot incomprehensible distances with infinite variables and perfect precision. This created a galactic empire ruled by an emperor and ruled by regional feudal powers. The Bene Gesserit serve as advisers to these powers, or Great Houses, in a spiritual and diplomatic capacity.
However, unbeknownst to their powerful allies, the Sisterhood is true only to itself and is the culmination of a breeding program channeled through tens of thousands of human generations. Ultimately, their goal is to produce a perfectly evolved male capable of being everywhere at once, possessing perfect knowledge of the past and visions of the future, with a mandate to guide the next era of humanity in a prophesied golden age.
What does Dune’s voice actually do – and are there other powers?
Like the Guild and a handful of other powerful organizations or individuals, the Sisterhood also uses the spice to similarly improve their minds and the progress they have made with their bodies are a by-product of those upgrades. A fully capable Bene Gesserit can instruct every cell in their body with micro-specificity, up to and including determining the sex of a growing fetus in their womb, a vital component of their secret agenda.
It also allows sisters to control the pitch and “selected tones” in their vocal register to trigger obedience receptors in others. While there is a prerequisite for physical training which includes perfecting a meditative awakening in which the mind rests in perfect calm awareness, it is a skill that can be learned by anyone.
Jessica Atreides, Paul’s mother and Bene Gesserit follower, ordered an enemy soldier to kill one of his brothers in arms in the 2021 Denis Villeneuve film adaptation, which differs significantly from the book. In the original source material, she used a combination of suggestive body positioning with voice to convince them that they should fight, but with the same overall results.
Jedi Mind Trick Vs Star Wars. Dune’s voice: which is the most powerful?
Most often used to compel individuals in a very direct way, it can also be applied in feathery notes among a crowd, to divert their passions to a destination of the follower’s taste. Paul Atreides, who had been trained from birth in the Bene Gesserit arts, used it in this way to convince the Fremen to abandon some of their most sacred traditions. In the novel, the Arakeen natives believe that leadership must shift from one to the other via mortal combat, but Paul knew the value of his leader Sietch, Stilgar, and did not want to waste his talents and designed an oratory. to convince his adopted people to allow his ascension in other ways.
The Voice is not an artifact of morality like the Force abilities taught to the Jedi. The disciples of the light side could not use their abilities in the same efficient and brutal manner as the Bene Gesserit without risking descending the slippery slope towards darkness. Motivated by integration with the fabric of the universe, a deeper understanding of oneself, and acting as peacekeepers in a galaxy full of imbalance, the foundational motivations of the Jedi lead them to a very different skill set and craft a suggestive manner of almost non-invasive persuasion as something as fierce as Sisterhood’s Voice.
Dark side devotees might invoke more terrible compulsions, however. Canonically speaking, both Darth Maul and Starkiller used versions of coercive mind control. The former used it to maintain the leadership of the Trade Federation before the Siege of Naboo and the latter could use his Force bending to make his enemies fight against each other. While not technically a Jedi mind trick, these examples demonstrate what a Force compulsion is capable of when applied ruthlessly. In the history of Legends, powerful masters like Yarael Poof, remarkably skilled in persuading the Force and once a member of the High Jedi Council, were able to create elaborate illusions in the minds of his opponents, which the Bene Gesserit said. doesn’t seem able to do it through Voice alone. .
A connection to the Force is required to use any Jedi art, along with years and years of dedicated training. Although both require inordinate discipline to master the Voice, they are accessible to anyone who takes this training and can afford quills. This may be a small number of individuals but potentially more than the number of beings born into a mystical relationship to all living things otherwise known as Force-sensitive.
Most convincing is the evidence from the novel describing how the Voice could be used to influence crowds. A Jedi’s mind trick most of the time only affects individuals one at a time, although when that individual is in a group he doesn’t seem to notice the manipulations, nor does he seem to be. directly affected by them. When taken together, the Bene Gesserit appears to have a more versatile and powerful form of exhortation.
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