At A time when the whole political system of Southeast Asia seems to be on the verge of complete reshapement and when a new cycle of development, dominated by native forces, may be expected to emerge from the present turmoil, an inquiry into the ideological foundations of native government will not be out of place and, perhaps, will even be of more than purely theoretical interest. What were the religious and philosophical conceptions which underlay and shaped the states of Southeast Asia? Are they still living forces with which we have to count or are they dead and gone? Is it possible to inoculate new ideas into old traditions, thereby avoiding a complete break with the past, a dangerous uprooting of oriental thought and culture?

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