White Buffalo Calf Woman

White Buffalo Calf Woman is a supernatural woman sacred to the Lakota religion. According to oral tradition, she brought the Seven Sacred Rites and Ceremonial Pipe to the Sioux, at a time when the people had forgotten how to pray and had lost touch with Wakan Tanka (Great Mystery or Great Spirit), the Creator who had provided them with all good gifts.

The pipe was to be smoked prior to and during the observance of the seven rites:

  • Keeping of the Soul (Keeping and Releasing of the Soul)
  • The Purification Rite
  • Crying for a Vision
  • The Sun Dance
  • The Making of Relatives
  • The Girl’s Coming of Age
  • The Throwing of the Ball