Tag Archives: Lakota

Save Wounded Knee

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Wounded Knee site up for sale
Wounded Knee site up for sale

Save Wounded Knee
Published: April 11, 2013


THE Lakota Sioux word “takini” means “to die and come back” but is usually translated more simply as “survivor.” It is a sacred word long associated with the killing of scores of unarmed Lakota men, women and children by soldiers of the United States Army’s Seventh Cavalry in the winter of 1890.

Wounded Knee was the so-called final battle of America’s war on its Native peoples. But what happened was hardly a battle. It was a massacre.

A band of several hundred Lakota led by Big Foot, a chief of the Mnicoujou Sioux, was intercepted and detained by troops as they made their way from the Cheyenne River Reservation to Pine Ridge for supplies and safety. After a night of drinking, the bluecoats were disarming warriors the next morning when a shot went off. Soldiers opened fire with their Hotchkiss machine guns. At least 150 but perhaps as many as 300 or more Lakota died.

Our fight to survive as a people continues today, a struggle to preserve not just our culture and our language but also our history and our land. Though I now live on the western reaches of the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation, I grew up in Pine Ridge, among my Oglala kin just a few miles from Wounded Knee. One member of my family survived the killing; others died.

The killing ground stirs great emotion in all of our people — memories of bodies frozen into twisted shapes, of those who were hunted down and murdered as they fled, and of those who escaped in bitter cold across wind-swept plains. These stories have been handed down to us and live within us.

One story I remember vividly was told to me when I was about 8 by a tribal elder, a very old woman whose mother had survived the bloodshed as a child. The old woman’s mother told her how her own mother had gathered her up when the bullets started flying. Just then, a young horse warrior galloped past and took the child up in his arms to help her escape. As she looked back, she saw her mother shot down, her chest torn open by bullets. She told her daughter that she remembered tasting the salt in her tears. The old woman told me all this after I had knocked over a saltshaker. Salt still reminded her of her mother.

There are many such stories. The spiritual power of the place explains why members of the American Indian Movement took it over in 1973 to call the nation’s attention to the economic and cultural injustices against our Native brothers and sisters.

Now, our heritage is in danger of becoming a real-estate transaction, another parcel of what once was our land auctioned off to the highest bidder. The cries of our murdered people still echo off the barren hills — the cries we remember in our hearts every day of our lives. But they may finally be drowned out by bulldozers and the ka-ching of commerce read more from NYTimes. com

Full Moon October 22, 2010

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Adobe Moon in the City
Adobe Moon in the City

Yet another Full Moon October 22, 2010 at 9:38 P.M. Las Vegas time.

FULL MOON NAMES from The Old Farmer’s Almanac
Historically, the Native Americans who lived in the area that is now the northern and eastern United States kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to the recurring full Moons.

Each full Moon name was applied to the entire month in which it occurred. These names, and some variations, were used by the Algonquin tribes from New England to Lake Superior.

This is the month when the leaves are falling and the game is fattened. Now is the time for hunting and laying in a store of provisions for the long winter ahead. October’s Moon is also known as the Travel Moon and the Dying Moon.

The following information and photos are from Western Washington University:

In the Algonquin (Northeast to Great Lakes) language the name for the October full moon is: “pepewarr” or “white frost on grass.”

Algonquin mask
Algonquin mask

In the Lakota (Northern Plains) language the name for the October full moon is: “canwape kasna wi” or “moon when the wind shakes off leaves.”

Lakota woman
Lakota woman

Interesting factoids:
Can the Moon change your luck? According to Moon folklore, in many cases it brings good luck. But not always! Read on . . .
It’s Lucky to . . .
It is lucky to see the first sliver of a new Moon “clear of the brush,” or unencumbered by foliage.
It is lucky to own a rabbit’s foot, especially if the rabbit was killed in a cemetery by a cross-eyed person at the dark of the Moon.
It is lucky to hold a moonstone in your mouth at the full Moon; it will reveal the future.
It is lucky to have a full Moon on the “Moon day” (Monday).
It is lucky to expose your newborn to the waxing Moon. It will give the baby strength.
It is lucky to move into a new house during the new Moon; prosperity will increase as the Moon waxes.
It’s Unlucky to . . .read more from The Old Farmer’s Almanac

Full Moon names/information from The Old Farmer’s Almanac
Full Moon names from WWU
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