….. to endure oneself may be the hardest task in the universe….
The greatest palatinate earl and the lowliest stipendiary serf share the same problem. You cannot hire a mentat or any other intellect to solve it for you. There’s no writ of inquest or calling of witnesses to provide answers. No servant — or disciple — can dress the wound. You dress it yourself or continue bleeding for all to see.”
“No matter how exotic human civilization becomes, no matter the developments of life and society nor the complexity of the machine/human interface, there always comes interludes of lonely power when the course of humankind, the very future of humankind, depends upon the relatively simple actions of single individuals.”
There exists a limit to the force even the most powerful may apply without destroying themselves. Judging this limit is the true artistry of government. Misuse of power is the fatal sin. The law cannot be a tool of vengeance, never a hostage, nor a fortification against the martyrs it has created. You cannot threaten any individual and escape the consequences.
Empires do not suffer emptiness of purpose at the time of their creation. It is when they have become established that aims are lost and replaced by vague ritual.
They are not mad. They’re trained to believe, not to know. Belief can be manipulated. Only knowledge is dangerous