Sustainable WNC

The Gateway to Sustainability in Western North Carolina

Archive for April, 2008

In the mountain moonlight

Sunday, April 20th, 2008

Dear Relatives,

In the mountain moonlight
The cherry blossoms

Much Love and Many Bear Hugs,

Chief Arvol Looking Horse, Releasing the Spirits Ceremony, April 15th, 2008

Friday, April 4th, 2008

Dear Relatives,

This one comes to us from out West.

Chief Arvol Looking Horse,

Releasing the Spirits Ceremony

April 15th, 2008 - Noon Gardiner, MT

Simultaneous Prayer Vigils are encouraged to pray for the 1,302 (+)

buffalo that have been carelessly slaughtered this winter alone and the

thousands more slaughtered in the past decade since the last Releasing the

Spirit Ceremony held back in 1997!

From Chief Arvol Looking Horse, S’unkawakan Wicas’a, 19th Generation Keeper of the Original
Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota Nation of the Sioux

Mi-ta-ku-ye (my relatives),

I have been called upon to perform the Spirit Releasing ceremony for

the thousands of buffalo that have lost their lives in the last decade, in

the mountains of the Yellowstone River country.

Many, many generations ago, our relatives, the Pte O-ya-te (Buffalo

People) came up from Wind Cave in the Black Hills; the heart of Un-ci

Ma-ka (Grandmother Earth) and prepared the way for our existence.

From that time forward, they gave of themselves for our survival, as

long as we respected their gift. They taught us how to live in an

honorable and respectful way by example and through the teachings

of the White Buffalo Calf Woman. She brought the Sacred Canupa

(Pipe) to remind us of our responsibilities and also provided us with

the knowledge of the sacred rites that are necessary to discipline


From the Buffalo Nation, our ancestors learned to have an honorable

relationship of being connected with Un-ci Ma-ka; this “way of life”

that identifies us of who we are as an O-ya-te (a People), with all its

sacred teachings. They understood the gifts from Un-ci and carefully

lived in harmony with her wellbeing. For that reason, we hold them to

be sacred. We co-existed in a good way until we were nearly

destroyed. Ob un-ka-so-ta-pi tka. The sacred Buffalo Nation in these

mountains are the survivors of that natural way of life. We are

culturally and spiritually indebted to them and we still need their

guidance, to remind us how to be at peace and harmony with Un-ci


Let it be known that Yellowstone territory; the habitat of the last wild

Buffalo Nation - is sacred ground, it has been a SACRED SITE for

the First Nation’s people, and for all humanity who hold deep respect

for all Creation. The Buffalo Nation has confirmed this fact; by where

they have ended up, continuing to survive in their natural migration,

struggling to live in a peaceful manner. Our ancestors also gave us

this message by fasting in this area long ago, as they recognized this

place of sacredness. This understanding is how we maintain the

balance upon Un-ci Ma-ka, to protect these places, especially for the

survival of our future generations to come.

These Buffalo that lost their lives in Yellowstone did not die by

Natural Law, nor were their spirits honored with ceremony. This is

why we must go there to perform a ceremony of honor for those that

lost their lives by the misunderstanding of human-kind and pray to

Wakan Tankan (Great Spirit) for pity of how gifts were unappreciated.

We must pray with all those who grieve and be grateful for them.

Many of the people who are deeply concerned of what has happened

in the manner of which their lives were taken; we see this as an unnecessary

massacre. We have known that this particular herd is the

last original Buffalo Nation that still follows their migration pattern, the

little that is left in tact; they are the sign of our connection to our

wellbeing of living in harmony. I humbly ask for all People to make

prayers on April 15th, at high noon; for a healing of humanity — for the

decisions that are being made with no regard for the sacredness of

life, for the massacred Buffalo’s spiritual journey and to protect what

is left — in understanding of what our journey in this life represents in

being responsible! We must pray for the healing of the human Spirit,

to understand the connection to all living beings on Un-ci Ma-ka.

In a Sacred Hoop of Life, where there is no ending and no beginning!

Can-te Mi-ta-wa I-ta-han (from my heart)

Chief Arvol Looking Horse

19th Generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe

For conservation and sustainability,

Paul Gallimore, Director
Long Branch Environmental Education Center
POB 369 Big Sandy Mush Creek
Leicester, NC 28748
Tel. 828/683-3662 Fax: 828/683-9211
Web Site:

“To restore the land one must live and work in a place.
To work in a place is to work with others.
People who work together in a place become a community,
and a community, in time, grows a culture.
To work on behalf of the wild is to restore culture.”
– Gary Snyder