The title of my paper might already seem to invoke so many question-begging terms as to call for some preliminary explanations. What is myth? What is culture? What is tradition?

As an integrationist, I may perhaps be allowed a certain measure of diffidence about definitions. I shall simply take it that we are dealing with a cultural tradition wherever a society has achieved a sufficient degree of self-awareness to discuss its own beliefs and practices by reference to authorities long since dead and to ideas which those predecessors held, or are alleged to have held. Gandhi was once asked what he thought about Western civilization and replied that he thought it would be a good idea. But I doubt that even Gandhi would have refused to acknowledge the existence of a Western cultural tradition, however civilized or uncivilized.