!! And it shall come to pass !!
THE WHITE BUFFALO
The color of the buffalo's coat varied with its age, and from one
geographical area to another. Some southern buffalo were tawny, and others were almost
Farther north, one might find an occasional blue or mouse colored buffalo, or even a pied
or spotted one.
Rarest of all was the albino, of which few existed, and even they varied from dirty gray
to pale cream.
The Indian warriors set a high value on a white buffalo robe and were reluctant to part
with one. A certain Cheyenne war chief wore a white robe when he led his warriors into
battle, and believed that it would shield him from all harm. Some of the holy men used
white robes in their medical curing rituals.
White or albino buffalo were rare, and the number taken by different bands was so few it
became a matter of historical record to be handed down from generation to generation. Only
three were known by the Assinibonie tribe. The hide of one was brought back by a war
party, but the heirs did not know whether the party killed the animal or took it from an
enemy tribe in a raid. Another was owned by a northern band, who, whenever a momentous
occasion arose, used a piece of it to fashion a sacred buffalo horn headdress for a new
The third, a heifer, was only seen by several hunters who were returning to camp after a
chase. Their horses were tired and no attempt was made to chase it.
However, one of their
number, whose name was Growing Thunder, followed the herd for some time but finally
returned to the group and told how the herd seemed to guard the white one. He tried to get
within shooting range of the animal but was unsuccessful. It remained at all times in the
middle of the large herd.
According to Native
American Indian lore, the brown buffalo represents the "male spiritual entity",
and the white buffalo represents the "female spiritual entity". Similar to the
reverence given to Mother Earth, which provides and sustains all life on this planet, so
the white buffalo is seen as a symbol of the "mothering" caring entity that
watches over us.
as told by Little Turtle
Buffalo Calf Named
News of the birth of
a rare white buffalo is spreading among American Indians, inspiring pilgrimages to what
many tribes believe is a sacred, apocalyptic animal. "This is like the second coming
of Christ on this island of North America," said Floyd Hand, a Sioux medicine man
from Pine Ridge, SD, "The legend is she would return and unify the nations of the
four colors -- the black, red, yellow and white."
The white calf named "Miracle" was born August 20 at the Wisconsin farm where
Dave Heider raises a herd of 14 buffalo and other animals. He plans to have it tested to
see if it will retain its white coat, the cow is definitely not albino.
The white buffalo
is sacred to the Cheyenne, Sioux, and other tribes of the Plains that once relied on the
buffalo for sustenance according to Mattheu Snipp, a University of Wisconsin sociology and
Indian studies professor. The white buffalo's spiritual significance stems from its
In the 1800s, when up to 80 million of the buffalo roamed the plains, the odds against
having an albino calf were estimated at one in 10 million, according to the National
Buffalo Association. Relentless hunting reduced the buffalo population to about 500 in the
late 1800s, there are about 130,000 today.
"The impact and enormity of this to the
Red Nation is immense," said Harry Brown Bear of the Oneida tribe in Wisconsin,
"the teachings of our people and elders say there would be a time the Anglo nation
and the American Indian would come together in goodness." As of September 10, about
100 people from the Oneida, Cherokee, Sioux, and a half dozen other tribes had visited the
Heider said, "One woman flew in from Arizona, paid her respects, and then she was
gone." On Monday, September 12, Arvol Looking Horse, who holds the pipe given to the
Sioux by the legendary White Buffalo Calf Woman, and Floyd Hand came to the Heider farm.
They came to perform a sacred pipe ceremony and spread a message of cultural
revitalization and peace. The birth of the first white buffalo in more than 50 years is an
omen of renewed interest in American Indian heritage, Looking Horse said.
As the 19th keeper of the Sacred Calf Pipe, Looking Horse said the buffalos return
signifies that "a healing would begin and dreams and visions would return."
Hand, who led a group of Lakota Sioux from Pine Ridge, SD, said the calf's coming also
affects non Indians,
"It's an omen that's bringing a change and a new world."
"The 21st century that is coming is going to unify all of us. We are here to
encourage people to pray for peace. We're going to heal together now." Heider said the
family felt honored by the ceremony and gifts, "It's not something you feel in your
head; it's something you feel in your heart," he said.
More than 1500 people from around the country have visited the animal.
Buffalo Calf Art
from the Chicago Tribune
- Tale of Discovery
of White Buffalo
close friends and I made a pilgrimage to the little town of Janesville, Wisconsin. We took
a country lane out to a small farm just across the road from slowly flowing river, and
there, on a quiet and misty day, visited Miracle - a female white buffalo calf, born long
after the usual spring calves on August 20, 1994. Her nose is black, her eyes are black,
the tip of her tail is black, and the rest a totally rare white. She looks as though her
mother had intimate connection with an ermine in his beauteous winter coat!
Such a white coat is even more rare than an albino, which would display pink nose and
There has not been such a one born for sixty years or so; the most famous and long-lived,
many have very short lives was a male called Big Medicine, who spent his years on the
Allard/National Bison Range near Moise, Montana. Big Medicine died years ago and is on
permanent display in the Montana Historical Museum in Helena.
- The real miracle is
not just her rare whiteness; she is a powerful spiritual symbol to many native peoples.
She is the completion of an old, old prophecy which was given when White Buffalo Calf Pipe
Woman made her mysterious and profound visit to the Lakota people, bringing the sacred
pipe and giving seven sacred rites to help two-legged live well upon this sweet Mother
Earth. This happened long, long ago when the Lakota people lived a rather settled
existence in forested areas east of the Great Plains.
White Buffalo Calf Pipe Woman taught that each day and all things are sacred, blessed by
the great Mother Life; and that we should therefore respect, honor, and commune with all
things in the Circle of Life. She spoke of walking in a holy manner - a way of wholeness
and vital integrity with all things and beings in all the realms of life.
She reminded the people that whatever we do to any other thing or being in the Circle of
Life, we do to ourselves for we are One. Her message was that of a deep sacred ecology -
through which consciously working together, all things are assured of continuing and vital
She reminded us that without this communion, co-operation, sharing, and unity, we would not
be able to move through this old time into a new one.
Before leaving those Lakota people, she prophesied that she would return, and bring the
message of peace, unity and wholeness again.
Brooke Medicine Eagle
Seven Sacred Rites
The seven sacred rites as introduced by
Buffalo Calf Woman are:
- 1: The keeping of
the soul:- the soul of a dead loved one is purified so it can return to to the
Spirit from whence it came.
2: Inipi: The sweat lodge ceremony or right of purification used as cleansing and
preparatory ceremony renews one's spirituality and physical body.
3: Hanblecheyapi:- Vision quest performed.
individually on an isolated mountaintop,brings one closer to Wakan Tanka through
contemplation and reflection
4: Wiwanyag Wachipi:- The Sun Dance Ceremony.
The annual coming together of the tribe to thank the Great Spirit, for all that the
Creator has given to the people
5: Hunkapi:- Making relatives
a strong blood bond with someone else, promotes peace and reflects the spiritual
relationship between humanity and Wankan Tanka.
6: Ishnata Awicalowan:- Preparing a girl for womanhood.
Recognizes the importance of women as the source of the flowering tree for the Sioux
nation, women seen as peaceful segment of humanity
7: Tapa Wanka:- Yap: throwing the ball.
Establishes the relationship between the people and the universe, or Wankan Tanka, who is
everywhere, a small girl stands in the center of a circle and throws a ball up into the
air in the four directions of the universe.
be a steward of the Earth
Caretakers for all that dwell upon it
To be of one heart with all things
Human beings must learn to share
the tears of every living thing
To feel in his heart the pain
of the wounded animal
each blade of grass
Mother Earth is our flesh
the rocks, our bones
the rivers are the blood of our veins
We are all children of God
Traditions are open to anyone who wishes to learn"
Huichol Holy Man
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