Artwork: "Leto Atreides II The God Emperor", Joe Peterson, 2017(source)
Important Note: To discuss these ideas from the Dune series, plot spoilers are revealed below
"Centralized leaders must be avoided at all cost. He became the greatest despot of all time so that humans would always remember and never return to their past behaviors. " ~ Quinn, 2018
"You are God embodied. You walk around within the greatest miracle of the universe, yet you refuse to touch or see or feel or believe in it" ~ God Emperor of Dune, Frank Herbert, 1981
"My gift, Leto said. Nobody will find the descendants of Siona. The Oracle cannot see her... I give you a new kind of time without parallels... It will always diverge. There will be no concurrent points on its curves. I give you the Golden Path. That is my gift. Never again will you have the kinds of concurrence once you had." ~ God Emperor of Dune, Frank Herbert, 1981
"I wrote the Dune series because I had this idea that charismatic leaders ought to come with a warning label on their forehead: "May be dangerous to your health." One of the most dangerous presidents we had in this century was John Kennedy because people said "Yes Sir Mr. Charismatic Leader what do we do next?" and we wound up in Vietnam. And I think probably the most valuable president of this century was Richard Nixon. Because he taught us to distrust government and he did it by example." ~ Frank Herbert
Ultimate Guide to Dune (Part 5) God Emperor of Dune
Oct 5 2018
"...that humankind still longed for their Messiah. Their Savior who would solve their problems and restore the Empire to the way it once was.
...what is the Golden Path exactly?
It starts with one basic idea, if one individual could rule over all mankind, then one threat could destroy it. This is the essential lesson that [Leto II, the God Emperor] had to teach mankind.
Centralized leaders must be avoided at all cost. He became the greatest despot of all time so that humans would always remember and never return to their past behaviors.
...Leto [foresaw] the death of all humankind if he did not intervene:
"And who knows what the Ixians might manufacture or invent? Who knows? I certainly don't. Not all of it." ~ Leto II, God of Emperor of Dune, Frank Herbert, 1981
Leto understood that once the magic of technology was unleashed that it could never be put back in the box.
...He tolerated the Ixians though he called them criminals of science.
The Ixians operated in the terra incognita of creative invention which had been outlawed...
They made their devices in the image of the mind...
...But Leto knew that he would not have to worry as long as he succeeded in his breeding program...
..."Do not fear the Ixians. They can make the machines. But they no longer can make Arafel. I know. I was there." ~ Leto II, God of Emperor of Dune, Frank Herbert, 1981
Arafel is the cloud darkness of holy judgement. This is a biblical reference:
Clouds and Darkness are round about him. Righteousness and justice are the habitation of his throne.
...though the Ixians will continue to invent, they will never create God. Never create a machine that will be the final judge of all humankind.
...whatever threat Leto foresaw, would have used prescience to seek out and destroy all of mankind.
Ciona's genes [that hide her from prescient vision], which [have] spread throughout all the universe during the scattering, would prevent this.
By forcing mankind to stagnate, confined to their individual planets for thousands of years, Leto created a restlessness within them. When they were free from his tyranny, they scattered throughout the universe.
The Ixian threat would never be able to find all humans.
No one individual could ever again glimpse the whole of humanity."
~ Quinn's Ideas
Dune Wiki: Arafel
The word is Hebrew . In modern Hebrew arafel simply means "mist" or "fog." In the Bible however it has a more potent and evocative meaning. The normal Hebrew word for darkness is choshek; the Hebrew word for "cloud" is 'anan. Arafel , however, actually does mean something like "cloud-darkness" as Frank Herbert has Siona explains it in God Emperor of Dune . Perhaps most significantly, this thick darkness/cloud darkness is quite closely linked with the presence of God .
Arafel occurs 16 times in the Hebrew Bible and in all but one occasion it is directly associated with descriptions of Divine habitation and Divine visitations of the Hebrew God "YHWH"