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The Golden Path

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'''The Golden Path''' ("Secher Nbiw" in the ancient Egyptian language) was an expansive prescient interpretation that was only visible to the [[Kwisatz Haderach]]. It foretold the fluid events of the future, both great and small. More profoundly, however, it revealed an optimum path through the countless threads of cause and effect that were encountered by the human race.
 
'''The Golden Path''' ("Secher Nbiw" in the ancient Egyptian language) was an expansive prescient interpretation that was only visible to the [[Kwisatz Haderach]]. It foretold the fluid events of the future, both great and small. More profoundly, however, it revealed an optimum path through the countless threads of cause and effect that were encountered by the human race.
   
In essence, the Golden Path entailed a restriction in spice production alongside spice stockpiling and the terraforming of Arrakis. The terraforming killed off all the worms, and the lack of spice restricted space travel. Eventually, after centuries of careful and deliberate oppression, Leto II was destined to die and release new sandtrout to begin a new worm-spice cycle. Subsequently, this caused the expansion of human domains far beyond the boundaries of the known universe, guaranteeing the preservation of humanity in the long term by inducing a massive expansion and diversification of human population, territory and culture.
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In essence, the Golden Path entailed a restriction in spice production alongside spice stockpiling and the terraforming of Arrakis. The terraforming killed off all the worms, and the lack of spice restricted space travel. Eventually, after centuries of stagnation, Leto II was destined to die and release new sandtrout to begin a new worm-spice cycle. Subsequently this caused the scattering of humans beyond the current known universe to preserve all of humanity in the long term by forcing a massive expansion and diversification of human population, territory and culture.
   
 
==Dangers for Humanity==
 
==Dangers for Humanity==
Through prescience, [[Paul Atreides]] and [[Leto II]] foresaw that humanity would end if it stagnated and remained confined within the [[known universe]] and rigid class structure of the [[Imperium]]. Though the Imperium's population was many trillions, Leto II's rule proved that humanity was still confined within a space that could be controlled by a single interest. Although rarely addressed directly, it was often suggested that this lack of exploration and growth left humanity vulnerable to being endangered by a single threat, which would lead to the eventual destruction of humanity. The conflict between humanity's ''stated'' desire for peace and their ''actual'' need for volatility was the strong central theme of the entire Dune series, explored in every book after the first. God Emperor Leto II's stated goal was to "teach humanity a lesson that they will remember in their bones": that sheltered safety was tantamount to utter death, however long it would be delayed.
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Through prescience, [[Paul Atreides]] and [[Leto II]] foresaw that humanity would end if it remained confined within the [[known universe]] and rigid class structure of the [[Imperium]]. Though the Imperium's population was many trillions, Leto II's rule proved that humanity was still confined within a space that could be controlled by a single interest. Although rarely addressed directly, it was often suggested that this lack of exploration and growth would cause the eventual destruction of humanity. The conflict between humanity's ''stated'' desire for peace and their ''actual'' need for volatility was the central theme of the entire Dune series after book one. God Emperor Leto II's stated goal was to "teach humanity a lesson that they will remember in their bones". That sheltered safety was tantamount to utter death, however long it would be delayed.
   
 
==Origin==
 
==Origin==
Though the [[Bene Gesserit]] had long anticipated the existence of The Golden Path, the term was first vocalized by [[Paul Atreides]] after the defeat of [[House Atreides]] on [[Arrakis]]. However, its inherent dilemmas were only apparent to him after he ingested the [[Water of Life]]. Even with his considerable powers Paul struggled to determine the best path through the maze of decisions presented to him. This was possibly due to the fact that he was not the ultimate [[Kwisatz Hadarach|Kwisatz Haderach]], having been born a generation sooner than the [[Bene Gesserit]] had planned. It was more likely, however, that Paul's difficulty with maintaining a clear oracular vision was because of his own emotions. Much like his father, Paul was forever tempted by a simpler life, far away from the intrigues and dangers of prescience, Imperial politics, and war. He was also continually haunted by the death of his father, and the manner in which his House was betrayed by so many. However it could also be that Paul was constricted by his own prophecy; he could not walk the Golden Path because he knew his son was the one destined to do so, not he.
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Though the [[Bene Gesserit]] had long anticipated the existence of The Golden Path, the term was first vocalized by [[Paul Atreides]] after the defeat of [[House Atreides]] on [[Arrakis]]. However, its inherent dilemmas were only apparent to him after he ingested the [[Water of Life]]. Even with his considerable powers Paul struggled to determine the best path through the maze of decisions presented to him. This was possibly due to the fact that he was not the ultimate [[Kwisatz Hadarach|Kwisatz Haderach]], having been born a generation sooner than the [[Bene Gesserit]] had planned. It was more likely, however, that Paul's difficulty with maintaining a clear oracular vision was because of his own emotions. Much like his father, Paul was forever tempted by a simpler life, far away from the intrigues and dangers of prescience, imperial politics, and war. He was also continually haunted by the death of his father, and the manner in which his House was betrayed by so many. However it could also be that Paul was constricted by his own prophecy; he could not walk the Golden Path because he knew his son was destined to do so, not he.
   
 
==Evolution==
 
==Evolution==
After Paul's apparent death in the deserts of Arrakis, his son [[Leto Atreides II|Leto]] - also technically a (and perhaps more accurately ''the'') [[Kwisatz Haderach]] - began to see The Golden Path, but unlike his father he chose to begin it (or perhaps he was always destined to do it). Leto's ability to see into the threads of causality allowed him to craft a future in which he became a human-[[sandworm]] hybrid, and thus the long-lived [[God-Emperor]].
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After Paul's apparent death in the deserts of Arrakis, his son [[Leto Atreides II|Leto]] - also technically a (and more probably ''the'') [[Kwisatz Haderach]] - began to see The Golden Path, but unlike his father he chose to begin it (or perhaps he was always destined to do it). Leto's ability to see into the threads of causality allowed him to craft a future in which he became a human-[[sandworm]] hybrid, and thus the long-lived [[God-Emperor]].
   
In this form he guided humanity with an iron fist for three and a half thousand years, an intricately crafted design leading to the final stroke where he would ultimately use his own death to take The Golden Path even further.
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In this form he guided humanity with an iron fist for three and a half thousand years, and used his own death to take The Golden Path even further.
   
At first The Golden Path appeared to culminate in the ascent of House Atreides, [[jihad]], the spread of [[Fremen]] customs, and the terraforming of Arrakis. However, Leto extended it to incorporate an expansion in the diversity and safety of the human race, via [[The Scattering]], as well as preventing Mankind from being trapped by prophecy both by removing the ability to see into the future from humanity through spice deprivation, and by breeding a human strain invisible to prophets through the traits inherited from [[Siona Atreides|Siona]], who used this ability to successfully slay the prescient Leto II.
+
At first The Golden Path appeared to culminate in the ascent of House Atreides, [[jihad]], the spread of [[Fremen]] customs, and the terraforming of Arrakis. However, Leto extended it to incorporate an expansion in the diversity and safety of the human race, via [[The Scattering]], as well as prevent people from being trapped by prophecy both by removing the ability to see into the future from humanity through spice deprivation and by breeding a human strain invisible to prophets through the traits inherited from [[Siona Atreides|Siona]], who used this ability to successfully slay the prescient Leto II.
   
 
==Ramifications==
 
==Ramifications==
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