INTRODUCTION – The Story of Looking Back Woman
This story will shock most American Indians and non-Indians familiar with the story of the White Buffalo Calf Woman Pipe.
It is a powerful and compelling story about a woman and a Sacred Pipe — a C'anupa Wakan — and her struggle to hold that pipe – in a good way. Moreover, like the Sioux prophesy of old, this is a story about the important spiritual message she brings.
The story involves one the most powerful American Indian spiritual leaders of our time and dozens of other figures who enter this stage and sometimes just fade away and others who stand out as either villains, guardians or champions.
The focus of our attention however will remain one the most remarkable enigmas to appear in Native American Indian chronicles in recent history – Looking Back Woman and the Sacred Pipe she carries.
The Sacred Pipe is an object of immense significance, spiritually and culturally, to the seven nations of the Great Sioux Oyate (people) as well as other indigenous brothers and sisters throughout the Americas.
Its history, care and traditions have become a subject of importance to Native peoples everywhere, if only as a reminder of the importance of their own history and traditions and the need to retain them, and be mindful of how much has been saved and how much has been lost.
Because the Sacred Pipe is so venerated among Native peoples, and rightly so, considered by many of the same stature as the Ark of the Covenant, that when new information is offered in credible fashion regarding it, we believe everyone concerned should be informed. This is done out of respect for the Pipe and its traditions and as is our duty to shed light on Native culture.
It is not our intention in this story to undermine the power and traditions of the Sacred Pipe as handed down through the generations or to cast doubt upon any of the Lakota Oyate. It is a sign of our respect that we present this information so that the heritage of the Pipe can be fully known and preserved, even debated, to be honored and kept alive in the hearts of the people even more.
The Lakota, Dakota and Nakota are arbiters of their own traditions and heritage. They shall decide the outcome of this story.
We present this information — from the source — so that people may fully judge for themselves the claims made in as full measure as possible, without distortion or being filtered through mass media.
It is not our intent to in any way either endorse or challenge the information provided except to ask questions and seek answers. We invite contrary views or information and credible evidence to support or contradict the claims made here. We make no judgments, or any claims. Our only intent is to provide a forum for the airing of truth on a matter of great importance, in the venerable tradition of providing open council.
We do not expect everyone will believe what is written in these pages. Some will take serious offense that the status quo is being challenged by a relatively unknown individual, especially a woman with a great deal of spunk and facts to back up her story. Like it or not, we cannot deny the wealth of evidence presented here.
The most important element of this story, however, is not about the C'anupa Wakan (Sacred Pipe) itself or the remarkable woman who carries this Pipe, but rather our attention should remain focused on the message she brings. The message is simple, yet spiritually profound and deeply moving. It is a message that will mark a point in time that historians and storytellers will recall generations from now.
As we become involved in the details of this compelling story about a woman and her Pipe, we will endeavor to continually remind the reader that the magnitude and value here is not about one human, one physical object, linear history, religious politics or anything else, except the message she brings.