The Looking Horse Proclamation

Why this is important: Even the Looking Horse proclamation, in plain language, says that we do not do Inipi Ceremonies ED.

Prior to the Looking Horse Proclamation a summer conference in 1993 on Pine Ridge issued a Declaration of War Against Exploiters of Lakota Spirituality. Chief Lone Hill was well aware of the Declaration, as he was Vice President of the Tribal Council at the time. I asked him about this in 1995 when he gave MKP the OK to do what we do. He said, “Aww, they didn’t talk to us. They didn’t talk to the Elders. They didn’t talk to the Council of Chiefs. They shouldn’t have done it. They just made it harder for rest of us.” And he agreed that MKP was not practicing ‘plastic shamanism’, nor any of the objectionable behaviors raised in that document.

When the Looking Horse Proclamation was first issued in 2003 it was not well received by many Lakota people. Letters to the editor of Indian Country Times written by representatives of several families on Pine Ridge and Rosebud called it “racist” and “bigoted”. Many of these folks, including the family with whom MKP has been primarily related, rejected it as discriminatory against the people whom many of them had as relatives.

The MKP LKS has been falsely accused of doing “Inipi” Ceremonies. What is an Inipi Ceremony?

If you look up the word “Inipi” in the Lakota dictionary you will find the word “sweat lodge”. And, since it is the Lakota dictionary the definition means that it is the word for the Lakota sweat lodge.

The Looking Horse proclamation, if you read it, makes it clear that MKP LKS does not do Inipi. In order to do Inipi one must use eagle feathers and the Sacred Pipe (Channunpah). And one must be able to speak to the Ancestors of the Lakota (the Tunkashila, or Grandfathers) in their original “Native Plains tongue.”

The following items were expressly prohibited from the time of the original Protocol for the P&RC, 8 years before the Proclamation was issued:

Eagle Feathers
Sacred Pipes
“Calling in the Grandfathers” in any language
Buffalo skulls

To say LKS does Inipi Ceremony is false. And no matter how many times someone says we do Inipi it doesn’t make it true. We do not do Inipi.

I asked Chief Lone Hill once about someone accusing LKS of doing Inipi.

His response was, “If anyone who knows what an Inipi is saw what you were doing, they would know you weren’t doing Inipi.”

I pressed him a little harder on the issue and asked him, “What should we do if we are attacked anyway?”

He said, “Tell the Truth. Just Tell the Truth and keep Telling it.”

So I am Telling the Truth.

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One thought on “The Looking Horse Proclamation”

  1. Thank you for this Curtis… I was friends with Lance Ramroop, I miss him… he and I were LKS members, starting back in 1998… I had the honor of sitting in ceremony with you as inside door, outside door and fire tender…. I miss the healing, sanctity, and love of what we did…. blessings….
    Brian Stevens… Vision Hawk

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