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Frank Herbert Quotes

American journalist and author (b. 1920), Birth: 8-10-1920, Death: 11-2-1986 Frank Herbert Quotes
1.
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.
Frank Herbert

2.
The mystery of life isn't a problem to solve, but a reality to experience.
Frank Herbert

3.
Without change, something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken.
Frank Herbert

4.
Ready comprehension is often a knee-jerk response and the most dangerous form of understanding. It blinks an opaque screen over your ability to learn. The judgmental precedents of law function that way, littering your path with dead ends. Be warned. Understand nothing. All comprehension is temporary.
Frank Herbert

5.
All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities.
Frank Herbert

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6.
All men seek to be enlightened. Religion is but the most ancient and honorable way in which men have striven to make sense out of God's universe. Scientists seek the lawfulness of events. It is the task of Religion to fit man into this lawfulness.
Frank Herbert

7.
If we define Futurism as an exploration beyond accepted limits, then the nature of limiting systems becomes the first object of exploration.
Frank Herbert

8.
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.
Frank Herbert

Quote Topics by Frank Herbert: Men People Thinking Believe Law Life Government Self Past Mistake Giving Humans Wise Mind Inspirational Real Children Trying Want Needs Violence Lying Doe Writing Quality Fall Moving Problem War Use
9.
Governments, if they endure, always tend increasingly toward aristocratic forms. No government in history has been known to evade this pattern. And as the aristocracy develops, government tends more and more to act exclusively in the interests of the ruling class -- whether that class be hereditary royalty, oligarchs of financial empires, or entrenched bureaucracy.
Frank Herbert

10.
When politics and religion are intermingled, a people is suffused with a sense of invulnerability, and gathering speed in their forward charge, they fail to see the cliff ahead of them
Frank Herbert

11.
There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.
Frank Herbert

12.
Do actions agree with words? There's your measure of reliability. Never confine yourself to the words.
Frank Herbert

13.
Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty.
Frank Herbert

14.
All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. Such people have a tendency to become drunk on violence, a condition to which they are quickly addicted.
Frank Herbert

15.
Justice belongs to those who claim it, but let the claimant beware lest he create new injustice by his claim and thus set the bloody pendulum of revenge into its inexorable motion
Frank Herbert

16.
The best contribution one can make to humanity is to improve oneself.
Frank Herbert

17.
Question: Who governs the governors? Answer: Entropy
Frank Herbert

18.
The proximity of a desirable thing tempts one to overindulgence. On that path lies danger.
Frank Herbert

19.
Ideas are a dime a dozen. It's execution that counts.
Frank Herbert

20.
Absolute power does not corrupt absolutely, absolute power attracts the corruptible.
Frank Herbert

21.
The beginning of knowledge is the discovery of something we do not understand.
Frank Herbert

22.
A ruler must learn to persuade and not to compel... he must lay the best coffee hearth to attract the finest men... a good ruler has to learn his world's language... it's different for every world... the language of the rocks and growing things... the language you don't hear just with your ears... the Mystery of Life... not a problem to solve, but a reality to experience... Understanding must move with the flow of the process.
Frank Herbert

23.
Educational bureaucracies dull a child's questing sensitivity. The young must be dampened down. Never let them know how good they can be. That brings change. Spend lots of committee time talking about how to deal with exceptional students. Don't spend any time dealing with how the conventional teacher feels threatened by emerging talents and squelches them because of a deep-seated desire to feel superior and safe in a safe environment.
Frank Herbert

24.
Highly organized research is guaranteed to produce nothing new.
Frank Herbert

25.
There is only one true wealth in all the universe. I have given you some of it. I have given your father and your mate some of it. And your friends. This wealth is living time.
Frank Herbert

26.
The undeserving maintain power by promoting hysteria.
Frank Herbert

27.
Scientists seek the lawfulness of events. It is the task of Religion to fit man into this lawfulness.
Frank Herbert

28.
Most civilisation is based on cowardice. It's so easy to civilize by teaching cowardice. You water down the standards which would lead to bravery. You restrain the will. You regulate the appetites. You fence in the horizons. You make a law for every movement. You deny the existence of chaos. You teach even the children to breathe slowly. You tame.
Frank Herbert

29.
The function of science fiction is not always to predict the future but sometimes to prevent it.
Frank Herbert

30.
It is so shocking to find out how many people do not believe that they can learn, and how many more believe learning to be difficult.
Frank Herbert

31.
Most deadly errors arise from obsolete assumptions.
Frank Herbert

32.
When a wise man does not understand, he says: "I do not understand." The fool and the uncultured are ashamed of their ignorance. They remain silent when a question could bring them wisdom.
Frank Herbert

33.
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.
Frank Herbert

34.
Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic.
Frank Herbert

35.
When I need to identify rebels, I look for men with principles
Frank Herbert

36.
How often it is that the angry man rages denial of what his inner self is telling him.
Frank Herbert

37.
Science fiction, because it ventures into no man's lands, tends to meet some of the requirements posed by Jung in his explorations of archetypes, myth structures and self-understanding. It may be that the primary attraction of science fiction is that it helps us understand what it means to be human.
Frank Herbert

38.
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.
Frank Herbert

39.
The people I distrust most are those who want to improve our lives but have only one course of action in mind.
Frank Herbert

40.
To suspect your own mortality is to know the beginning of terror, to learn irrefutably that you are mortal is to know the end of terror.
Frank Herbert

41.
Life is a mask through which the universe expresses itself.
Frank Herbert

42.
Blood is thicker than water, but politics are thicker than blood.
Frank Herbert

43.
If you think of yourselves as helpless and ineffectual, it is certain that you will create a despotic government to be your master. The wise despot, therefore, maintains among his subjects a popular sense that they are helpless and ineffectual.
Frank Herbert

44.
Politics: the art of appearing candid and completely open while concealing as much as possible.
Frank Herbert

45.
If you live in bad faith, lies will appear to you like the truth.
Frank Herbert

46.
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.
Frank Herbert

47.
There is not secret to balance. You just have to feel the waves.
Frank Herbert

48.
Good governance never depends upon laws, but upon the personal qualities of those who govern. The machinery of government is always subordinate to the will of those who administer that machinery. The most important element of government, therefore, is the method of choosing leaders.
Frank Herbert

49.
The convoluted wording of legalisms grew up around the necessity to hide from ourselves the violence we intend toward each other. Between depriving a man of one hour from his life and depriving him of his life there exists only a difference of degree. You have done violence to him, consumed his energy.
Frank Herbert

50.
Does a population have informed consent when that population is not taught the inner workings of its monetary system, and then is drawn, all unknowing, into economic adventures?
Frank Herbert