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CHAPTER  XV,
POLITICAL CHANGES.
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A STATE that is not built on caste or shut up within itself
causes of political by non-intercourse with the rest of the world,
changes.                cannot escape the changes that affect .the con-
dition of society, and through them the state of opinion and
the other causes on which political systems themselves depend
for their stability. Even China has not been able to avoid
changes produced from abroad (those resulting from the
conquest by the Mongols), and from within, which have
shown themselves in various revolutions. Nor has, India,
with a syste»n most wonderfully devised for permanence,
been able to resist foreign influences which now, at length,
seem to be undermining the old institutions of Brahminism ;
nor were these institutions able, more than two thousand
years ago, to suppress without a struggle the reformatory
movements of Buddhism, which at one time seemed about
to control the whole peninsula. It was the greatness of the
change, apparently, the danger of the abolition of caste and
of the fall of Brahminism, that roused the leaders of society
to a struggle which slow and silent changes would not have
provoked.
Changes may be silent and unperceived in their action on
society and on thinking, or they may be open and manifest
Thus, they may be of such a kind as not to be provided
against, or they may give notice of their approach by what
they had done in some other country. They may appear in
such a shape that all, even the most conservative, the most
uncompromising, will welcome them, and in the end they
may turn out to be the most sweeping and revolutionary of