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Lakota Beliefs


Lakota Prayer
Quotes from Others

The Purpose behind Lakota

          There is a way of living that Native Americans call " to Walk in Beauty ". It is said that one Walks in Beauty when one has Earth and Sky in Harmony. Lakota's intention is to Walk in Beauty.

The Seven Rits of the Lakota

1. Nagi Gluhapi - Keeping of the Soul

2. Inipi - Rite of Purification

3. Hanblecheyapi - Crying for a vision

4. Wiwanyag Wachipi - The Sun Dance

5. Hunkapi - Making of Relatives

6. Ishna Ta Awi Cha Lowan - Preparing a girl for Womanhood

7. Tapa Wanka Yap - Throwing of the Ball


Other Lakota Ceremonies

Chanunpa Wakan

The pipe ceremony is a sacred ceremony for connecting physical and spiritual worlds. The pipe is described as a link between the earth and the sky. Its is believed that nothing is more sacred. The pipe is our prayers in physical form. Smoke becomes our words; it goes out, touches everything, and becomes a part of all there is. The fire in the pipe is the same as the sun, which is the source of life. The reason why toccabo is used to connect the worlds is that the plant's roots go deep into the earth, and its smoke rises high into the heavens.


This ceremony is used for healing, divining, and for finding a lost person or object. A medicine man performs this ritual during the night. The medicine man builds an altar, that he is later placed upon after being wrapped in a thick blanket, with his hands tied behind his back. When he is placed on the altar, a circle of people form around him and the altar, holding hands. Then the medicine man prays very loudly to the gods so that everyone can hear him.


Smudging is a common practice among Native Americans for the cleansing of energy through the burning of sage, tobacco, and sweetgrass.

The Earth Day Ceremony

The Earth Day is very serious and powerful. The ceremony is held outdoors, the the four directions are invoked, as well as the powers of the earth and sky, to let these energies know that the people are giving Mother Earth their full support and respect.

Symbolism in Natural Beings

The Earth                    The Eagle

The Sun                       The Buffalo

The Moon                     Sage

The Stars                     Cedar

The Night                     Sweetgrass

The Tree                      Corn

The Fire                       The Rabbit

The Rocks


Symolism in Dwellings

The Tipi

The Sweatlodge

The Ceremonial Lodge


Symbolism in Tools and Objects

Sacred Objects

The Pipe

Ceremonial Paint

The Drum

The Eagle-bone Whistle

The Drying Rack

Paul Dwyer Religion