Responses to Arvol Looking Horses Green Grass Proclaimation(meeting) 2003


Green Grass Proclamation    There are two sides to the present rift that is going on because of Arvol Looking Horse speaking out. I think Arvol is a good man and we are blessed to have him. He also is under many pressures from various spiritual leaders. They are all human and have varying values, track records and intents. There are also some deeply spiritual, sincere full blood dissenters. There are good points to both sides, and I respect the truthful intentions of those who seek to preserve the traditional Way and those who would like to see the Wah shi chu get changed thru the power of the Way. I think that the dissenters realize why the Wah shi chu needs to change. There are Four Horses of the Apocalypse if we use the white man’s own Bible but it takes an Indian to identify just what those four horses names are. His Bible fails to do this. They are Heat, Thin, Gone and Too Man! y. (Heating of the Planet, Thinning Ozone, Gone Resources and Over-Population). They are on the horizon and the Wah shi chu and their values need drastic change for the future Generations Unborn. It is very important what decisions we make. What decisions are made, I hope it ultimately preserves the thoughts and advancements of the real old societies that would never allow a hierarchy or a priesthood come to control a human’s spiritual beliefs especially those based on the direct observation of Nature.

    My Major concern is that Native Spirituality never evolves into a Hierarchy!

    The Aztecs had a priesthood and it destroyed their Nation. The Spanish Wah shi chu came along and easily subdued them. (They had the enthusiastic, willing help of all the surrounding tribes whose children were the Aztec’s victims!) Go to Central America and see how proud the Mexicans are of being Indio. They actually deny who they are. What the Catholic Church failed to convey to them while brutally converting them was that they themselves were doing the same thing as the Aztec priests were doing at the same time in their history. The burning at the stake and torturing of millions in the 3 Great Inquisitions were no less heinous than the human sacrifices of the Aztec priests. People were being brutally killed and in the Christian situation, tortured before being murdered all over a hierarchal priest, bishop or Pope dictating that they, themselves, knew directly Creator’s teachings, words, interpretations, etc. See Malleus Maleficarum, the best selling book of it’s! time. This is the Great Danger of a hierarchy or a priesthood. It lives to sustain itself and seeks to gather power and control. The Northern Indians never allowed such a thing and wound up living dignified, highly moral lives and came up with the world’s greatest gift from mankind to mankind- Democracy!!!

    American Indians, Northern Ones at least, never state who EXACTLY, Creator is or try and explicitly define or describe the Great Mystery. We Sioux (Lakota, Dakota) call the Ultimate One, Wakan Tanka, which means Great Mystery, Great Holy, or the Beyond One. It has a whole host of names, the Creator, the Ultimate Maker, the Benevolent Entity, the Unknown, etc. but no true traditional will try to describe explicitly other than it is way beyond any definition by human. We are the only real honest religion/spirituality when you really get down to it compared to all the other religions who are constantly fighting each other because they explicitly “know” w! ho Creator is.

    We Sioux were the last of the major tribes to “come in” and hence preserved our culture, our ceremonies and our language. Be honest. Most tribes lost their culture to a great extent. The Sioux have only been “in” for a hundred years. It is not difficult to understand why tribes who have been 200 and 300 years under and with the Wahshichu have severely lost their culture, language and religion. Those Sioux who remained in North Carolina, (Cawtaba, Waccama) where we migrated from have lost their language, religion and culture. They are all bonafide Christians. I visited them and found this out. (Note: As an older Lakota, I am more comfortable with the word Sioux, contrary to Academics.)

    What I have learned from the Sioux holy men I was under, they also never had a Devil or a Satan. They could not believe a Benevolent Creator would ever make such a thing or allow it. Why in the hell would an All -Powerful Entity have need for such a thing? Look at all IT has given us in our lives to live here upon Ina Makah! So many signs are there that IT is truly Benevolent and Providing. To a Traditional Sioux, it is an insult to the All Providing One to state that this Devil thing and its fiery hell is created by the Great Entity. Yet the Christians use it to control you. This may disappoint many of you, but if you knew the real old timers, such a thing came from the white man and now I find, the Islams also have such a foolish superstition. I say simply, “How many of you have seen it?” I know only one thing explicitly. I will never see it and not even the Christians can show me one. I have even asked them. They can never come up with one.

    Our spirituality is primarily based on what we observe in Nature (Creator’s direct creation). If you cannot find a devil here, then why do you believe in it? Your choice not mine. I go back to what I observe and what the old timers say. The hierarchy, priesthood ones, all use pain and fear to control. We Northern People had a rich life for tens of thousands of years. This brief contact with the Wah shi Chu is but a mere drop in the historical bucket of time. Down, down thru time we lived and came up with the greatest gift- that system that allows the most enjoyment of the precious freedoms which the Wamaskaskan, the animal brothers and sisters enjoy. Freedom! Which is also Democracy and no religious hierarchy.

Eagle Man, Oglala, OST 15287
Reprinted under the Fair Use doctrine of international copyright law. Full copyright retained by the original publication.

This response comes from Ouachitalk Edited by Sky Warrior
 (  )

MAY 10, 2003: Bear Butte, South Dakota:
    Through the days of cold, driving rain the Lakota arrived at Bear Butte, South Dakota as best they could for the important fourth and final Protection of Ceremonies Meeting, this one hosted by the Cheyenne Nation and scheduled for May 10-11, 2003. Many Lakota Leaders who had planned to attend failed in their efforts on Saturday, stuck fast in the mud of South Dakota. Meanwhile, the scheduled sweat lodge ceremonies, breakfast meetings, and outdoor women’s’ circles didn’t exist, leaving the people who managed to get there to drive back and forth across the area, looking to connect with others.

     And while they wandered and wondered, about 30 Lakota Spiritual Leaders, Sundance Chiefs, and other interested persons met with Chief Arvol Looking Horse in mid-morning at the Bear Butte Lodge, the large log cabin off Coyote Lane owned by the Sicangu of the Rosebud. Amidst coffee and discussion, the words centered primarily around the proposed Declaration and Request to the U.S. Government which would be presented later that day to the Lakota by the Northern Cheyenne’s Chief and High Priest, Bernard Red Cherries.

    Clearly each person present was concerned that the Traditional spiritual ceremonies be protected yet most seemed to carry differing ideas as to the best way to implement that protection. But, in a rare moment of unity, the Lakota Leaders all spoke of their strong reluctance and disapproval of empowering the Federal Government to intrude or control or enforce spiritual matters in any ways other than those which already exist. They saw no need to change the existing 1978 American Indian Freedom of Religion Act. Despite the fact that Looking Horse was in favor of the Cheyenne Declaration, there was no question that the majority of those Lakota present were not.

[editor’s note: To read a copy of the proposed Cheyenne Declaration and Request, go to  ]

    Finally everyone moved to the Bear Butte Center on the other side of the hill. Filing in through sheets of down pouring rain, past the bronze bust of the late beloved Lakota Ceremonial Chief Frank Fools Crow, the Elder women and women of all ages were allowed to enter and listen (but not speak). Eventually, over 150 people entered that building, all in a peaceful manner, all seriously intent on hearing the words of the Spiritual Leaders.

    There were numerous speakers…. Floyd [Looks For Buffalo] Hand, representing a group of Oglala Spiritual Leaders, spoke in favor of the Looking Horse Statement of March, 2003 yet also of the need to let each reservation handle their own spiritual matters and enforcement. Ponca Indian Activist Carter Camp warned that Traditional ways are tribal specific and in danger of disappearing if not restricted to the people to whom they were given. Southern Ute Sundance Leader Kenny Frost spoke of the need to protect and safeguard the Traditional ways for the future generations.

    Bernard Red Cherries, Northern Cheyenne Chief, Sacred Arrow High Priest, and Elk Scraper Society Headsman from Portland, Oregon, talked of his loaded Pipe which lay in front of the Leaders and of the incredibly heavy burden he had shouldered for the last year as he carried his Pipe on this specific mission. His words described how he had loaded his Pipe a year ago with the commitment and obligation to bring awareness and help for the People to “stand tall again….. because without their [Traditional] Ways, they are nothing.” He stated his belief that his Declaration and Request to the United States Government was the means through which this would happen and that it was the “obligation of the Leaders to stand up for the People in this manner.”

     Bernard Red Cherries, also known as Frank Reynolds and Robert Coltte, continued to relate that it is the “duty of the People to care for their Sacred Bundle Keepers who are holy.” He related how the Northern Cheyenne Warrior Societies take care of every need of the Cheyenne Sacred Arrow Keeper and the Sacred Medicine Hat Keeper from chopping wood, repairing roofs, and providing food to anything else the Keepers might need. He seemed baffled and incredulous that the Lakota did not do the same.

     Chief Arvol Looking Horse, 19th Generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf C’anupa Bundle of the Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Nation prayed and spoke of the need to stop the abuses and the exploitation of sacred ceremony which is reaching epidemic proportions. Still standing by all the points of his controversial Statement from March, Looking Horse pointed out that he believes the Grandfathers might leave the Lakota People if their Traditional Ceremonial Ways are not restricted and protected. He stated his intent was not meant to be racist.

    Oglala Spiritual Advisor and Medicine Bundle Keeper David Swallow, Jr., prayed and pointedly spoke of the need to honor the Sacred C’anupa and the Traditional Ways of the Sacred C’anupa which demand truth and honesty and which will turn on any who do wrong by it or who speak lies on it. In stirring words, he spoke that “the C’anupa is not a pipe…. that the word, pipe, is an English word which can mean many things. But a Sacred C’anupa is very different. The Sacred C’anupa is the Blood of the Ancestors and the Tree of Life, and it has its own laws by which a person must live. To apogi a C’anupa [to load a C’anupa], a person must not kill, must not have blood on their hands, a person must not have hate or jealousy in their hearts or actions, and a person must not ever lie or fool the People or else the C’anupa will turn around on that person.”

    Then Swallow turned and asked the Leaders if they were “opposed to the White Nation or to the System.” He spoke of how the System had raided his Sundance a few years ago with guns and helicopters in a failed attempt to stop it and how, even last year, the BIA charged him $2000 simply to hold his Sundance on his own land in Porcupine, South Dakota on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

    Swallow was emphatic that he does not hate the white people but he “refuses to personally receive anything from the U.S. Government System: not money, not housing, not food, not anything.” And even though everyone (including the Lakota) must live in this modern world, not in the old ways, he still absolutely would not choose to live under even more of the Government System and he will not approve this proposed Cheyenne Declaration and Request.

    Swallow stated his “Grandfather and Great-Grandfather never signed a Treaty and if the decision here to go under the U.S. Government, the Long Knives, was approved that he would not do it. Not ever.”

    As the day wore on, more Leaders and concerned Lakota spoke. By mid-afternoon it was clear that the Lakota Leaders were not going to approve the Cheyenne Declaration and Request to the U.S. Government. As a result, and much to everyone’s surprise, Bernard Red Cherries chose to end the meeting and smoke his C’anupa with the other Leaders amidst the sound of pounding rain and hail outside.

    No further discussion was held on the Protection (and Restriction) of Ceremonies issues.

    Red Cherries stated that he was host of this meeting and his sole purpose was to seek approval and support from the Lakota Leaders for his Declaration and Request to the U.S. Government. Since that wasn’t going to be obtained, Red Cherries saw no further use to continue the meeting. He promised to continue trying to convince the Lakota in the future. Calling it a “sad day for the Lakota,” he stated that he would leave the building to join the Northern Cheyenne, Southern Cheyenne, Northern Arapahoe, and Southern Arapahoe Leaders who would all be signing the Declaration and Request document.

    On Sunday morning, as baffled Lakota and other Native Americans continued to arrive at Bear Butte to attend the Protection of Ceremonies Meeting which was now ended, the sun finally came out.

Reprinted under the Fair Use doctrine of international copyright law. Full copyright retained by the original publication.

This response comes from Ouachitalk Edited by Sky Warrior
 (  )

MAY 23, 2003

    My name is Reginald Littlebrave Sr. and I am a full-blood Indian from the Rosebud Sioux tribe, of the White Buffalo Pipe Clan. I am Chief Caretaker and Pipe Carrier of the Black Pipe and the Black Pipe ways. I am the appointed teacher of the spiritual ways of the Black Pipe and the traditional practices of the White Buffalo Pipe Clan. I am Chief Drummer of the medicine world, as well as Chief Fire, Cedar, and Doorperson. I am the Assistant Chief Leader and Spokesman for the Native American Church of Pejuta Wakan 31-32 hailing from the state of South Dakota. I am Blackpipe.

    This is my opinion on what I have been recently hearing about our ancient spiritual ways of life.

    I am concerned for the future of our children and our grandchildren, the children of tomorrow and the children of their tomorrows.

    God’s way must continue on. The Pipe that they talk about is God’s way. I believe God’s way shall continue on even if the heavens and earth pass away. The Pipe needs to continue on through our children so God’s way can continue on through them.

    The Cheyenne say they are protecting the native ways of life. If that is what they are doing, they need a wise human being to speak for them. They need to explain what they are saying and doing and what they want to accomplish, because they are throwing out a negative energy to the world. The Pipe believes in and gathers God’s children from the four corners of the earth. The Cheyenne are scattering God’s children to the four corners. Whosoever scattereth, God is not there. If the intent of the Cheyenne is to protect these ways, they need some wise spokes agent. From my point of view, what they are saying does not make sense. If the Cheyenne knew what they were saying, there would not be a negative energy created among the people.

    I do not believe the United States government and those who make laws and caretake the freedom of religion should walk into the Native American ways of life and prayers because these are the only things we have left to find freedom in.

    I strongly believe that if the Cheyenne know for a fact who is misusing the sacred instruments and ceremonies, they should address them directly. Why should all the non-natives be punished for the actions of a few? And still, there are those who abuse these ways of life that are native. No religion or way of life on this earth is 100% secure from the errors of humanity.

    The reason I am fighting this is because my kids are what the Cheyenne call iyeska (mixed breeds or half-bloods). Some of my family are what they call non-native. What is a half-blood or non-native? Are we not all native to the land unto which we were born? There are those whom they call non-natives who have grown up in these ways of life, within these ceremonies, and this is all they know. It is thus their way of life, what was shown to them by their fathers and mothers, grandfathers and grandmothers. What will happen to them if their way of life is taken from them? What will happen to our children who will not be able to carry on our sacred traditions into tomorrow because they are not full bloods or natives? What will happen to our spiritual traditions? They will die out. Our ceremonies may be “protected”, but they will not be preserved.

    The Cheyenne should really think about these things before they present the paper (Declaration to Amend Freedom of Religion Act of 1978) to the United States government saying all Lakota agree. This is not true. The Pipe they are talking about was given to the Lakota people, including the seven sacred ceremonies, a few of which are the Sundance, Inipi (sweat lodge), Hunka (relative-making), and Hanblecha (vision quest) rites. The only ones that have authority to tell the Lakota Oyate anything about the pipe is Almighty God Himself and the White Buffalo Calf Woman – no one else. Who has given the Cheyenne the permission to speak for all Native American peoples and ways of life? Are they breaking spiritual laws or trying to steal spiritual gifts? Only Almighty God has the authority to guide and protect the ways we communicate with Him. No man can own a way of prayer.

    I wonder if anyone who is speaking for this Pipe has asked the Pipe how it feels. Have these people considered the feelings of this sacred instrument and how it wants to be used? At the conference in Bear Butte, SD on May 10, I personally witnessed how the Cheyenne used the sacred pipe. They neither sang pipe songs, nor spoke in the native tongue of the Lakota, who were gifted these pipe ways of life. If the Cheyenne want to protect the sacred traditions of the pipe, they must learn how to respect them too.

    If the Cheyenne open this door, the government will soon enter into the Native American Church, Powwows, and any ceremonies that have to do with Native American ways of this continent. We will soon have to have a license for our instruments, and eventually have to borrow them from the United States government. We may have to show ID to go to pray.

    I wonder what other Cheyennes are saying, only 4 or 5 came to the conference at Bear Butte on May 10. Is there any wise men among the Cheyenne that can come to speak for them? Why haven’t the Cheyenne asked the Native American Church Lakota peoples who pray with the pipe how they feel? Did they ask the Powwow people who use the pipe in their Hunka ceremonies? How about the Sundance peoples? The people who do Inipi, Yuwipi, and Lowanpi ceremonies? Did the Cheyenne take their point of view to the Rosebud Tribal Office or other Lakota spokes agents? They have only asked the Bundle Keeper, who is my nephew. They did not ask me, a Sicangu full-blood from the heart of the Rosebud reservation. Do they truly have any idea what they are doing and how it may affect us all?

    I wonder about many more things, but I am going to go about this far. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Thank you,
Reginald Littlebrave Sr. 
P.O. Box 1088
Port Hadlock, WA 98339
Reprinted under the Fair Use doctrine of international copyright law. Full copyright retained by the original publication.

This response comes from Ouachitalk Edited by Sky Warrior
 (  )

What has to be remembered is Martha Bad Warriors words from Aug. 1936 that can be found in Quest for the Pipe of the Sioux, As Viewed From Wounded Knee (by Wilbur A. Riegert, curator of the Wounded Knee Museum 1973, allotment agent at Cheyenne River Agency in the 1930s, as well as being Chippewa First Nations himself).

This Cannunpa (Calf Pipe) Wakan is for the good of all mankind, regardless of race, creed, color, gender or blood quantum, and It is to be used as a Peace Maker between Nations. 

About Looking Back Woman-Suzanne Dupree

Tetuwan Lakota scholar, educator, historian, Sun Dance participant, Cannunpa carrier, cultural & spiritual preservationist, journalist-writer and fraud investigator.
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6 Responses to Responses to Arvol Looking Horses Green Grass Proclaimation(meeting) 2003

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  3. Reblogged this on Looking Back Woman-Suzanne Dupree blog and commented:

    IF no whites were allowed where would all the money Arvol, Crow Dog, & the rest of the AIMster’s get their money from if it were not for “SELLING” their bogus “Spiritual” ceremonies? More like DANCING WITH THE DEVIL! All about the $$$, nothing about the Sacred….what would rapists, self-proclaimed bragging pedofiles & murderers know about the Sacred one needs to question, unless you’re as dumb as a stump….


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