The Tower of Babylon

Kula Babilonska

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Dune essay [Part III] - Esej o Dini [III Dio]
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Dune essay part I

Dune essay part II

3. Jung

It could be said that Dune, at least on some level, represents a manifestation and a literature occurrence of Jung's constructs in science fiction especially since Jung's theories had much influence on popular culture in the 70s and 60s and that's precisely the time period when Dune was being written. The whole Bene Gesserit Order represents a structured attempt to manipulate religious and other societal symbols, and through that, a manipulation of the collective unconscious.

Considering that, it's no wonder that the pivotal idea of Jung that constantly reappears through the Dune saga is the collective unconsciousness. According to Jung, the collective unconscious is a store of latent memories inherited from our ancestors, a history that not only includes the racial history of humankind but also our prehuman and animal ancestry (Mlačić, 2010). While in Jung's theories the collective unconsciousness represents the human predisposition toward their environment and the name (unconscious) implies that that memory can't be accessed by our conscious attempts, Herbert takes it a step further. If the collective unconsciousness is the result of  common brain structure humans share (Mlačić, 2010), then it's a result of evolution - and if we tie into that the intraneural hypothesis of memory which was mentioned in the previous chapter, we get reservoirs of racial memory which are carried by all of us and transmitted to our progeny by reproduction. The only trick is - nobody can access them.

The border between the collective unconsciousness and the collective consciousness, in Herbert's world, is broken by the spice - melange from Arrakis. Ingesting poisonous amounts of this drug, the members of the Bene Gesserit experience a qualitative change of consciousness which softens the borders between the collective unconsciousness and the ego - which basically gives them access to the racial memories. But there's a problem in this process. Only women can access this memory and at that, they can only access the female line of the racial memory. This is yet one more of the subtle finessing of Jung's personality theory in Herbert's novel - only the female side of the collective unconsciousness can be moved to consciousness by melange which could signify the unavailability of the male personality side, the animus. The aforementioned Kwisatz Haderach project which is maintained by the Bene Gesserit is in fact a genetic manipulation by which they hope to create a totality of balanced animus and anima, a 'male Bene Gesserit' who could access the  female and male racial memory line. He could encompass the whole, which would give him the power of precognition - the view of the totality which opens the possibility of seeing into the future. This search for a totality, which is represented by Paul Atreides, is probably just one of the more subtle appearances of Jung's mandala, a circle that symbolizes the totality.

The important role of melange in the transformation of Paul's consciousness to the Kwisatz Haderach level can also be viewed considering the zeitgeist in which Herbert lived and wrote - the 60s and 70s were a time of drug experimentation and melange does represent a perfect consciousness altering drug.

3.1 The Hero Archetype

According to some mythologists there exists an archetype they call the archetype of the hero in the mythologies of almost every civilization (Campbell, 2008). Some researches of mythology regard this reappearance of the same or very similar archetypes in various cultures as an evidence of the collective unconsciousness or at least of some universal symbols that are shared across human societies. Examples of such mythological heroes are Aeneas, Arthur, Buddha, David, Gilgamesh, Heracles, Moses, Odysseus, Oedipus, Perseus, Romulus, Sigfried and many others (Robinson, 2004):

The criteria that Paul Atreides fulfills to be called a Hero Archetype are: the father is a king (the Duke Leto, Paul's father, is a planetary ruler),  the father is often a cousin of the mother (Jessica is by birth a Harkonnen, and the families Harkonnen and Atreides are blood related), the circumstances of his birth are unusual (Paul was conceived despite the direct order the Bene Gesserit issued to Jessica to bear a daughter), the maternal grandfather tries to kill him (the Baron Harkonnen tries to kill him, who is his maternal grandfather) but he's saved and brought up in a foreign land (Paul hides with the Fremen and is assimilated into their culture), when he grows up he returns to the old kingdom and rules (Paul defeats the Padishah and becomes Emperor), he marries a princess (Paul marries the Princess Irulan, Padishah's daughter), he's exiled from home and dies mysteriously (the next two novels describe the happenings after Paul's disappearance and alleged mysterious death). These are just some of the Hero Archetype tratis that Paul has.

If we accept the proposition that science fiction is a self-conscious myth in which man purposefully mythologizes the field of science (Sutton and Sutton, 1969), the character of Paul Atreides can be understood as one of the newest manifestations of the Hero Archetype in a modern myth. That what Sutton and Sutton (1969) call the self conscious myth takes its full meaning when you take under consideration that in the confines of the story (myth), the character of Paul Atreides is deliberately created and trained by the Bene Gesserit and his mother to fulfill the precisely defined role of the mythological Hero and to use the boons that status brings - to put it as simple as possible, Paul Atreides is a Hero created by social engineering for the purpose of using the symbolism brought by that status. The Kiwsatz Haderach, seen in that way, is just a manifestation (in the world of Dune) of the mythological Hero. Paul is aware of that mythological status in which he was educated and which was carefully planned centuries before his birth, and he describes it like this (Herbert, 1990, p. 126): 

"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."
 
What Paul is trying to say is that a person aware of the fact that he/she is being viewed as one of the archetypes, must be able to differentiate between the symbolism which is ascribed to her and reality - he/she has to be critical enough to mock his/her own myth.

References:

Campbell, J. (2008). The Hero With a Thousand Faces. New World Library: Novato, CA.

Herbert, F. (1990). Dune. Berkley Books: New York.

Mlačić, B. (2010). Lecture notes from the class Theoretical systems and models in psychology of personality. Center for Croatian Studies: Zagreb.

Sutton, T. C. i Sutton, M. (1969). Science Fiction as Mythology. Western Folklore, 28, 230-237.


***

Esej o Dini I

Esej o Dini II

3. Jung

Moglo bi se reći, pošto je Jungova teorija imala velik utjecaj na popularnu kulturu 60-ih i 70-ih godina prošlog stoljeća a baš je u to vrijeme Herbert napisao i izdao Dinu (1965.), da Dina na određenoj razini predstavlja manifestaciju i literarno ostvarenje Jungovih konstrukta u znanstvenoj fantastici. Cijeli red Bene Gesserita predstavlja strukturirani poduhvat manipulacijom religijskim i drugim društvenim simbolima ljudi, pa kroz to, i manipulaciju kolektivnim nesvjesnim.

I zaista, glavna Jungova ideja koja se provlači kroz cijeli sagu o Dini je konstrukt kolektivnog nesvjesnog. Prema Jungu, kolektivno nesvjesno je skladište latentnih tragova pamćenja naslijeđenih od naših predaka, prošlost koja uključuje ne samo rasnu povijest ljudi kao zasebne vrste već i predhumano i životinjsko podrijetlo (Mlačić, 2010). Iako kolektivno nesvjesno predstavlja, u Jungovoj teoriji, predispoziciju ljudi prema njihovoj okolini i samo ime (nesvjesno) implicira da nije sjećanje koje je pristupačno svjesnom razmatranju, Herbert odlazi korak dalje. Ako je kolektivno nesvjesno rezultat slične strukture mozga svih ljudi (Mlačić, 2010), onda je ono rezultat evolucije – ako u to uključimo prije spomenutu intraneuralnu hipotezu pamćenja, dobivamo spremnike rasnog pamćenja koje svatko nosi u sebi i razmnožavanjem ih prenosi na svoje potomke, ali kojima nitko ne može pristupiti.

Granicu između kolektivnog nesvjesnog i svjesnog, u Herbertovu svijetu, slama začin – melange sa Arrakisa. Konzumirajući otrovne količine ove droge, članice Bene Gesserita proživljavaju kvalitativnu promjenu svijesti koja popušta granice koje dijele kolektivno nesvjesno od ega i omogućava pristup rasnim sjećanjima. No, i u tome postoji problem. Jedino žene mogu pristupiti ovom sjećanju i jedino se ženskom linijom mogu pratiti rasna sjećanja. Ovo je još jedno suptilno finesiranje Jungove teorije ličnosti u Herbertovu romanu – jedino je žensku stranu kolektivnog nesvjesnog moguće dovesti u svijest melangom što bi moglo označavati nedostupnost muškog djela ličnosti, odnosno animusa. Prije spomenuti projekt Kwisatz Haderacha koji Bene Gesserit vodi predstavlja genetičku manipulaciju kojom bi se stvorio totalitet uravnoteženog animusa i anime, 'muški Bene Gesserit' koji bi mogao pristupiti ženskoj liniji rasnih sjećanja, ali i muškoj. On bi mogao sagledati cjelinu, što bi mu dalo moć prekognicije – sagledavanja totaliteta koji omogućuje viđenje u budućnost. Ovo traženje totaliteta, koji predstavlja Paul Atreides, vjerojatno tek još jedno od pojavljivanja Jungove mandale, kruga koji simbolizira total.

Važan položaj začina melangea u transformaciji Paulove svijesti na razinu Kwisatz Haderacha se može shvatiti u kontekstu vremena u kojem je Herbert pisao – šezdesetih i sedamdesetih godina prošlog stoljeća je eksperimentiranje sa drogama bilo na svom vrhuncu, a melange predstavlja fiktivnu savršenu drogu koja mijenja svijest.

3.1 Arhetip heroja

Prema nekim mitolozima, postoji arhetip heroja koji se pojavljuje u mitologijama gotovo svih civilizacija (Campbell, 2008). Neki istraživači mitologija ovo pojavljivanje sličnih ili identičnih arhetipova u različitim kulturama smatraju kao dokaz kolektivnog nesvjesnog, ili barem univerzalnih simbola koje dijele sva društva. Primjeri ovakvih mitoloških heroja koji se pojavljuju su Eneja, Arthur, Buddha, David, Gilgameš, Heraklo, Mojsije, Odisej, Edip, Perzej, Romul, Sigfried i mnogi drugi (Robinson, 2004).

Kriterije koje Paul Atreides ispunjava da bi ga se zaista shvatilo kao arhetipnog Heroja su: otac mu je kralj (vojvoda Leto, Paulov otac, je planetarni vladar), otac je često bliski srodnik majke (Jessica je po rođenju Harkonnen, a obitelji Harkonnen i Atreides su u krvnom srodstvu), okolnosti njegova rođena su često neobične (začet je kao muško unatoč izričitoj naredbi Jessici od strane Bene Gesserita da rodi žensko dijete), djed po majci ga pokuša ubiti (Barun Harkonnen ga pokušava ubiti, koji mu je djed po majci) ali je spašen i odgojen u stranoj zemlji (skriva se kod Slobodnjaka i tamo biva asimiliran u njihovu kulturu), kada odraste vraća se u svoje staro kraljevstvo i vlada (Paul je na kraju prvog romana porazio Padišaha i postao Car), ženi princezu (ženi se princezom Irulan, Padišahovom kćeri), protjeran je od doma i misteriozno pogiba (cijela radnja drugog romana se odvija pod velom tajne Paulova nestanka i njegove navodne smrti). Ovo su tek neka od obilježja arhetipa Heroja koja Paul ima.

Ako prihvatimo shvaćanje da je znanstvena fantastika samosvjestan mit u kojem čovjek namjerno mitologizira područje znanstvenosti (Sutton i Sutton, 1969), lik Paula Atreidesa možemo shvatiti kao tek novu manifestaciju arhetipa Heroja u modernom mitu. Ono što Sutton i Sutton (1969) nazivaju samosvjesnim mitom poprima svoj puni smisao kada se uzme u obzir da u okviru same priče (mita), lik Paula Atreidesa je namjerno stvoren i treniran od strane Bene Gesserita i njegove majke, kako bi točno ispunio ulogu mitološkog Heroja i koristio sve prednosti tog statusa – najjednostavnije rečeno, Paul Atreides je društvenim inžinjeringom stvoren Heroj kako bi vladao pomoću simbolike koju taj status nosi. Kwisatz Haderach, tako shvaćen, je stvarno ostvarenje (u svijetu Dine) mitološkog Heroja. Paul je zaista i svjestan ovog mitološkog statusa u koji je odgojen i koji je pomno isplaniran davno prije njegova rođenja, te ga on promatra na ovaj način (Herbert, 2004; str. 143):

„Veličanje je prolazni doživljaj. Nikad nije postojan. Djelomično ovisi o mitovima sklonoj stvaralačkoj mašti ljudi. Osoba koja doživi hvalospjeve mora osjećati mit u kojem se nalazi. Mora odražavati ono što joj se pripisuje. Ali mora imati i sjajan osjećaj za ruganje. Baš joj to omogućuje da se otrgne vjerovanju u vlastitu izuzetnost. Jedino joj ironičnost dopušta okretanje samome sebi. Bez tog svojstva, čak će i kratkotrajni i slučajni hvalospjevi uništiti čovjeka.“
 
Ono što Paul ovdje pokušava reći je da osoba koja je svjesna da ju se percipira kao neki od arhetipa, treba moći razgraničiti simboliku koja joj se pripisuje i stvarnost – odnosno mora biti dovoljno samokritična da se naruga vlastitom mitu.

Literatura:

Campbell, J. (2008). The Hero With a Thousand Faces. New World Library: Novato, CA.

Herbert, F. (2004). Dina: Prva knjiga Kronika Dine. Izvori: Zagreb.

Mlačić, B. (2010). Bilješke s predavanja Teorijski sustavi i modeli u psihologiji ličnosti. Hrvatski studiji: Zagreb.

Sutton, T. C. i Sutton, M. (1969). Science Fiction as Mythology. Western Folklore, 28, 230-237.

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