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A brief summary of the book the sacred pipe

Oct 13, 2017 Ron Potter rated it it was amazing Really helped me understand the cultural differences that lead to the problems in the mid-1800s.

This one is a keeper. I will read it again. I hope the current version has a glossary that describes the basic elements, mythical figures, and rites of the Oglala Sioux. Jun 24, 2012 E. Then, last month I was on mission trip to the Pine Ridge Reservation and really enjoyed a presentation on the Lakota spirituality and the seven sacred rituals. I then discovered that there was this book of Black Elk describing the rituals, so I bought it at the Red Cloud School gift shop and began reading it while on the rez.

The Sacred Pipe: Black Elk's Account of the Seven Rites of the Oglala Sioux

There are very interesting insights in spirituality, some of which I will use, particularly in my I've been a Black Elk fan since last year when I read Black Elk Speaks. There are very interesting insights in spirituality, some of which I will use, particularly in my always developing "theology of the plains.

  • I have order your book to answers more questions I still have;
  • He invites us to understand the true meaning of the Pipe, to respect its power, and to discover whether it is our own calling as well as his.

It is important that the Lakota were able to preserve detailed, lengthy descriptions of their rituals, as they were banned for generations. So, this is an important book for their culture and my boredom at parts of it should not reflect on its value and significance. Black Elk conveyed great wisdom from which humanity could benefit. I was touched by this closing paragraph in the description of "The Throwing of the Ball" ritual: At this sad time today among our people [the book was published in 1953] we are scrambling for the ball, and some are not even trying to catch it, which makes me cry when I think of it.

It is my prayer that this be so, and it is in order to aid in this "recovery of the ball," that I have wished to make this book. I did find the chapter on the Sun Dance difficult to read.

If you are unfamiliar with the sun dance, it is very sacred rite that involves the cutting of flesh and the tying of one's body, via ropes, to the central tree and dance till the flesh is ripped.

A brief summary of the book the sacred pipe

Fully aware of its sacred importance to the Lakota, I have difficulty understanding this ritual. I understand why it has been revived, as any of us would work to recover our cultural rituals had they been banned, but I wonder if the culture had been left to develop if there would have been more contemporary and less bloody versions of the ritual that would have developed?

Think of how yoga, for instance, derived from early blood sacrifices and martial rites of the Hindus, as the ritual became more internalized. Also reading the one chapter on the Sun Dance reaffirmed my appreciation for being a Protestant and the radical view proposed by Luther that ritual actions are not required for us to receive grace.

The ritual for these are given in full, with their step-by-step procedures and the actual words and gestures used. Unfortunately, the editor, Joseph Epes Brown, has provide Valuable as a detailed exposition of the seven sacred rites of the Oglala Sioux by the last of the tribe's holy men, Black Elk, this book has significant ethnographical and historical interest - especially for its detailed descriptions of the Sun Dance Ceremony, of the Vision Quest, of the keeping and releasing of souls, etc.

Quick Overview

Unfortunately, the editor, Joseph Epes Brown, has provided little more than a transcription of Black Elk's words, unaccompanied by any serious analysis or scholarly research. He provides few footnotes, and those are rarely helpful - are seemingly only random thoughts occurring to him at the moment. And he provides only a cursory biography of Black Elk - only a few sentences - completely ignores his exposure to Christianity, his baptism and "conversion" to Catholicism decades before he spoke to Brown.

And he does not place the Oglala religion in context - does not comment on whether these seven rites were peculiar to the Oglala or common to all the Sioux tribes - whether there are variations in practice between the tribes.

Does not place them in the broader context of Native American spirituality. Moreover the reader is not given any assurance that this is an accurate translation of Black Elk's words - no information about the extent that they may have been affected by Black Elk's son A brief summary of the book the sacred pipe in translating them into English or been further modified by Epes Brown in the process of editing them into publishable form.

These many omissions leave the reader feeling a deep desire for more information - for much more than that provided by this book if he is to assimilate Black Elk's words - if he is to get a true understanding of his spirituality.

One the other hand and in defense of Brown, perhaps his intention was to allow Black Elk to speak for himself - unfiltered - to expose the reader directly to the thought of the Oglala holy man - to force the reader to make of it what he may. This the book does, and because it does, it is a unique record of the thought of a holy man and of a culture long gone.

It's more of a reference book than something you read once. Joseph Epes Brown recorded his conversations with Black Elk, a Holy man of the Oglala speaking about the rites associated with the pipe.

  • I understand why it has been revived, as any of us would work to recover our cultural rituals had they been banned, but I wonder if the culture had been left to develop if there would have been more contemporary and less bloody versions of the ritual that would have developed?
  • This is not a light read;
  • It is important that the Lakota were able to preserve detailed, lengthy descriptions of their rituals, as they were banned for generations;
  • And it is definitely not a how to book;
  • And he provides only a cursory biography of Black Elk - only a few sentences - completely ignores his exposure to Christianity, his baptism and "conversion" to Catholicism decades before he spoke to Brown;
  • The making of relatives 6.

It's a book of theology and philosophy and filled with sacred knowledge. This is not a light read. And it is definitely not a how to book. It should be read with the understanding that this i I refer to this book again and again and have a well-worn 1986 paperback of the original 1971 Penguin printing.

It should be read with the understanding that this is a description of sacred ritual that takes place within the context of a specific period of time and within the cultural context of a group of people. I highly recommend it for anyone who wants a brief summary of the book the sacred pipe deeper understanding of the sacred rituals associated with the pipe. The book also gives a greater understanding of the La Kota people who are intrinsic to any knowledge of Native American culture and history.

He was a Holy Man for the Sioux and then converted to Catholicism. However, reading this book, I didn't feel that Black Elk was true to his conversion and may have done it as merely a matter of convenience.

Either way, it was fascinating to learn more about the sacred rituals of the Sioux. Although it was an interesting read, it did, at times, get extremely tedious and repetitive. The editor should have added an introduction to each chapter that helped give more Black Elk is an interesting man.

The editor should have added an introduction to each chapter that helped give more background, history, and context to the ceremonies. I found that just reading Black Elk's recitation of the rituals wasn't enough to give me a full impression and understanding of the importance and significance of those rituals.

In fact, some of the rituals seemed to blend together in purpose. The ending of the book is a bit poignant with Black Elk hoping that future generations don't forget the rituals. The keeping of the soul 2. The rite of purification 3. Crying for a vision 4.

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The sun dance 5. The making of relatives 6. Ishna Ta Awi Cha Lowan: Preparing a girl for womanhood 7. The throwing of the ball Quotes: This is the real Peace, and the others are but reflections of this. The second peace is that which is made between two individuals, and the third is that which is made between two nations.

  • The wakan Mysteries of the Siouan peoples have been a subject of interest and study by explorers and scholars from the period of earliest contact between whites and Indians in North America, but Black Elk s account is without doubt the most highly developed on this religion and cosmography;
  • Fully aware of its sacred importance to the Lakota, I have difficulty understanding this ritual;
  • These many omissions leave the reader feeling a deep desire for more information - for much more than that provided by this book if he is to assimilate Black Elk's words - if he is to get a true understanding of his spirituality;
  • His book is unique in its focus on the living Pipeā€”the Pipe as the living body of the Spirit who has come to assist us in our walk, and all that means;
  • Unfortunately, the editor, Joseph Epes Brown, has provided little more than a transcription of Black Elk's words, unaccompanied by any serious analysis or scholarly research.

But above all you should understand that there can never be peace between nations until there is first known that true peace which, as I have often said, is within the souls of men.