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  • Karen Edmond

The Legend Of The White Buffalo Calf Woman.

While perusing my FaceBook page, I came across a beautiful share from Chief Vincent Mann's FaceBook page. Per the Public History Project, Chief Mann is "the Turtle Clan Chief of the Ramapough Lenape Nation, which encompasses Passaic County NJ, Warwick, and surrounding areas in New York. Chief Mann has held the title of Turtle Clan Chief for approximately twelve years." While reviewing Chief Mann's page, a friend of the chieftain named Mr. James Lawes provided information on the above topic.

Above Chief Mann

After doing a little research, I found a point of reference article written by the National Parks Service, a division of Fort Collins, Colorado, titled Bisons Bellow: The Birth Of The White Buffalo Calf that confirms the birth of the White Buffalo in 2012.

The birth of the rare calf correlates to the same year the country's east coast witnessed a giant blue moon the day before Super Storm Sandy hit in 2012. My question is it possible that ancient first nation legends or myths give reference to environmental changes or predictions? The world may never know. But in the meantime, enjoy this thought-provoking tale of The Legend of the White Buffalo Calf Woman.

Below are Sioux (Lakota) dancers.

Per Mr. Lawes, "The White Buffalo are sacred to many Native Americans. The Lakota (Sioux) Nation has passed down The Legend of the White Buffalo–a story now approximately 2,000 years old–at many council meetings, sacred ceremonies, and through the tribe's storytellers.

The legend of the White Buffalo Calf Woman tells how the People had lost the ability to communicate with the Creator. The Creator sent the sacred White Buffalo Calf Woman to teach the People how to pray with the Pipe. With that Pipe, seven sacred ceremonies were given for the people to abide in order to ensure a future of harmony, peace, and balance.

Legend says that long ago, two young men were out hunting when a beautiful maiden dressed in white buckskin came out of nowhere. One of the hunters looked upon her and, recognizing her as a wakan, or sacred being lowered his eyes. The second hunter approached her with lust in his eyes, desiring her for his woman. White Buffalo Calf Woman beckoned the lustful warrior to her, and as he approached, a cloud of dust arose around them, causing them to be hidden from view. When the dust settled, nothing but a pile of bones lay next to her.

As she walked toward the respectful young hunter, she explained to him that she had merely fulfilled the other man's desire, allowing him, within that brief moment, to live a lifetime, die, and decay. White Buffalo Calf Woman instructed the young man to go back to the People and tell them to prepare for her arrival to teach them of the way to pray. The young hunter obeyed.

When the White Buffalo Calf woman arrived with the sacred bundle (the prayer pipe) she taught the People of the seven sacred ways to pray. These prayers are through ceremonies that include the

  • Sweat Lodge for purification;

  • The Naming Ceremony for child naming;

  • The Healing Ceremony to restore health to the body, mind, and spirit;

  • The adoption ceremony for making of relatives;

  • The marriage ceremony for uniting male and female;

  • The Vision Quest for communing with the Creator for direction and answers to one's life;

  • And the Sundance Ceremony to pray for the well-being of all the People.

When the teaching of the sacred ways was complete, White Buffalo Calf Woman told the people she would again return for the sacred bundle that she left with them. Before leaving, she told them that within her were the four ages and that she would look back upon the People in each age, returning at the end of the fourth age to restore harmony and spirituality to a troubled land.

She walked a short distance; she looked back towards the people and sat down. When she arose, they were amazed to see she had become a black buffalo. Walking a little further, the buffalo laid down, this time arising as a yellow buffalo. The third time the buffalo walked a little further, and this time arose as a red buffalo. Walking a little further, it rolled on the ground and rose one last time as a white buffalo calf signaling the fulfillment of the White Buffalo Calf prophecy.

Below is the North American Indigenous Medicine Wheel

The changing of the White Buffalo Calf Woman's four colors represents man's four colors–white, yellow, red, and black. These colors also represent the four directions, north, east, south, and west. The sacred bundle that was left to the Lakota people is still with the People in a sacred place on the Cheyenne River Indian reservation in South Dakota. It is kept by a man known as the Keeper of the White Buffalo Calf Pipe, Arvol Looking Horse.”

Per Mr. Lawes, "The legend of the White Buffalo Calf Woman remains ever promising in this age of spiritual enlightenment and conscious awareness. Many of us are looking for signs of peace in today's world of confusion and war. With the return of the White Buffalo, it is a sign that:

  • Prayers are being heard,

  • That the sacred pipe is being honored, and that

  • The promises of prophecy are being fulfilled.

  • White Buffalo signals a time of abundance and plenty."

Visit the Native American store here:

I hope you found this over 2,000-year-old indigenous share enlightening. The story provided evidence of indigenous cultures' value system, respect for life, and some would call a code of ethics. Thanks for reading. Please enjoy Red Bone's "Hail, Come And Get Your Love."

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