A creative, potent, formless energy is assumed to animate the universe in parts of island Southeast Asia. In Luwu, a former kingdom of South Sulawesi (Celebes), Indonesia, this energy is called sumange'. This paper describes how sumange' is treated within the human body, which it is said to animate, and the logic of ritual substance that it implies. Because it can be lost through shock and routine depletion, humans make efforts to care for it, retain it, and increase it. Because it is potent, concentrations of it in people and places are dangerous. Its differential distribution orders the social and natural universe.

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