Bene Gesserit

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The Bene Gesserit (pronounced /ˈbɛniː ˈdʒɛsərɪt/, BEN-ee-JESS-ər-it[1]) are a key social, religious, and political force in Frank Herbert's science fiction Dune universe. The group is described as an exclusive sisterhood whose members train their bodies and minds through years of physical and mental conditioning to obtain superhuman powers and abilities that can easily seem magical to outsiders. Acolytes who have acquired the breadth of Bene Gesserit abilities are called Reverend Mothers within the organization's ranks.[2] Some of these fictional powers are analyzed and deconstructed from a real world scientific perspective in the book The Science of Dune (2008).[3][4][5]

Sometimes called "witches" due to their secretive nature and misunderstood powers, the Bene Gesserit are loyal only to themselves. However, to attain their goals and avoid outside interference, they often screen themselves with the illusion of being loyal to other groups or individuals. Their every move is calculated toward an end result. As the skills of a Bene Gesserit are as desirable as an alliance with the Sisterhood itself, they are able to charge a fee to school the females from Great Houses, and install some of their initiates as wives and concubines to their advantage.[2][6] In 1965's Dune, the Princess Irulan writes (via epigraph):

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