Frank Herbert, formally Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr.

Herbert, formally Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr.

American Science Fiction Writer, most notably the "Dune" series

Author Quotes

When a creature has developed into one thing, he will choose death rather than change into his opposite.

Which is the better: a good friend, a good heart, a good eye, a good neighbor, a good wife, or understanding of consequences? It is none of these. A warm and sensitive soul which knows the worth of fellowship and the price of the individual dignity - this is best.

You can’t buy security.

You will become whatever it is you most deeply desire.

War… the ultimate predator… the cohesive force which shatters.

We should grant power over our affairs only to those who are reluctant to hold it and then only under conditions that increase the reluctance.

When denied an external enemy, the all-male army always turned against its own population. Always.

Who shall guard the guardians? Who shall see that the guardians commit no offenses?

You cannot avoid the interplay of politics within an orthodox religion. The power struggle permeates the training, education and disciplining of the orthodox community. Because of this pressure, the leaders of such a community inevitably much face that ultimate internal question: to succumb to complete opportunism as the price of maintaining their rule, or risk sacrificing themselves for the sake of the orthodox ethic.

Your head is where ideas go to die.

We accept too damned many things on the explanations of people who could have good reasons for lying.

We should not be afraid. Fear destroys reason. The fear is that ignoble death that brings total destruction. I will stand face to face with my fear. I will allow him to pass over me and through me. And when you go away, you turned your inner eye to follow his path. Where I fear is gone, there is nothing left. Only I will remain

When he wanted, he could radiate charm and sincerity, but I often wonder in these later days if anything about him was as it seemed. I think now he was a man fighting constantly to escape the bars of an invisible cage.

Why are you mad at me?

You cannot fend off such realities with words. They will come at you in their own wordless way.

You've heard of animals chewing off a leg to escape a trap. There's an animal kind of trick. a human would remain in the trap endure the pain feigning death that he might kill the trapper and remove a threat to his kind.

We are questioning more than the philosophy behind our dependence upon limited and limiting systems. We question the power structures that have grown up around such systems.

We sift reality through screens composed of ideas. (And such ideas have their roots in older ideas.) Such idea systems are necessarily limited by language, by the ways we can describe them. That is to say: language cuts the grooves in which our thoughts move. If we seek new validity forms (other laws and other orders) we must step outside language.

When I am weaker than you, I ask you for freedom because that is according to your principles; when I am stronger than you, I take away your freedom because that is according to my principles.

Why is it that foolishness repeats itself with such monotonous precision?

You cannot fix your gaze upon it! Senses cannot record it. No words describe it.

We are the people of Misr, the old woman rasped. Since our Sunni ancestors fled from Nilotic al-Ourouba, we have known flight and death. The young go on that our people shall not die.

We tend to become like the worst in those we oppose.

When I need to identify rebels, I look for men with principles

Wisdom tempers love, doesn’t it?

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Herbert, formally Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr.
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American Science Fiction Writer, most notably the "Dune" series