Paul Atreides / Muad’Dib Quotes in Dune
“A duke’s son must know about poisons,” she said. “It’s the way of our times, eh? Musky, to be poisoned in your drink. Aumas, to be poisoned in your food. The quick ones and the slow ones and the ones in between. Here’s a new one for you: the gom jabbar. It kills only animals.”
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.
The willow submits to the wind and prospers until one day it is many willows—a wall against the wind. That is the willow's purpose.
“Mood?” Halleck’s voice betrayed his outrage even through the shield’s filtering. “What has mood to do with it? You fight when the necessity arises—no matter the mood! Mood’s a thing for cattle or making love or playing the baliset. It’s not for fighting.”
Muad’Dib learned rapidly because his first training was in how to learn. And the first lesson of all was the basic trust that he could learn. It’s shocking to find how many people do not believe they can learn, and how many more believe learning to be difficult. Muad’Dib knew that every experience carries its lesson.
Greatness is a transitory experience. It is never consistent. It depends in part upon the myth-making imagination of humankind. The person who experiences greatness must have a feeling for the myth he is in. He must reflect what is projected upon him. And he must have a strong sense of the sardonic. This is what uncouples him from belief in his own pretensions. The sardonic is all that permits him to move within himself. Without this quality, even occasional greatness will destroy a man.
People are the true strength of a Great House, Paul thought. And he remembered Hawat’s words: “Parting with people is a sadness; a place is only a place.”
And Paul, walking behind Chani, felt that a vital moment had passed him, that he had missed an essential decision and was now caught up in his own myth. He knew he had seen this place before, experienced it in a fragment of prescient dream on faraway Caladan, but details of the place were being filled in now that he had not seen. He felt a new sense of wonder at the limits of his gift. It was as though rode within the wave of time, sometimes in its trough, sometimes on a crest—and all around him the other waves lifted and fell, revealing and then hiding what they bore on their surface.
And through it all, the wild jihad still loomed ahead of him, the violence and the slaughter.
Let him sweat a little, the Baron thought. One must always keep the tools of statecraft sharp and ready. Power and fear—sharp and ready.
There existed no need on Caladan to build a physical paradise or a paradise of the mind—we could see the actuality all around us. And the price we paid was the price men have always paid for achieving a paradise in this life—we went soft, we lost our edge.
“No more terrible disaster could befall your people than for them to fall into the hands of a Hero” his father said.
The Fremen were supreme in that quality the ancients call “spannungsbogen”—which is the self-imposed delay between desire for a thing and the act of reaching out to grasp that thing.
My mother obeyed her Sister Superiors where the Lady Jessica disobeyed. Which of them was the stronger? History has already answered.
“When your opponent fears you, then’s the moment when you give the fear its own rein, give it the time to work on him. Let it become terror. The terrified man fights himself. Eventually, he attacks in desperation. That is the most dangerous moment, but the terrified man can be trusted usually to make a fatal mistake. You are being trained here to detect these mistakes and use them.”
“I will tell you a thing about your new name,” Stilgar said. “The choice pleases us. Muad’Dib is wise in the ways of the desert. Muad’Dib creates his own water. Muad’Dib hides from the sun and travels in the cool night. Muad’Dib is fruitful and multiplies over the land. Muad’Dib we call ‘instructor-of-boys.’ That is a powerful base on which to build your life, Paul-Muad’Dib, who is Usul among us. We welcome you.”
“When religion and politics travel in the same cart, the riders believe nothing can stand in their way. Their movement becomes headlong—faster and faster and faster. They put aside all thought of obstacles and forget that a precipice does not show itself to the man in a blind rush until it’s too late.”
The Guild Navigators, gifted with limited prescience, had made the fatal decision: they’d chosen always the clear, safe course that leads ever downward into stagnation.
“If I hear any more nonsense from either of you,” Paul said, “I’ll give the order that’ll destroy all spice production on Arrakis … forever.”
“Do it!” Paul barked. “The power to destroy a thing is the absolute control over it. You’ve agreed I have that power. We are not here to discuss or negotiate or compromise. You will obey my orders or suffer the immediate consequences!”
“He means it,” the shorter Guildsman said. And Paul saw the fear grip them.
"Do you know so little of my son?" Jessica whispered. "See that princess standing there, so haughty and confident. They say she has pretensions of a literary nature. Let us hope she finds solace in such things; she'll have little else." A bitter laugh escaped Jessica. "Think on it, Chani: that princess will have the name, yet she'll live as less than a concubine — never to know a moment of tenderness from the man to whom she's bound. While we, Chani, we who carry the name of concubine — history will call us wives.”