Essay heading: Lakota Symbolism of the Circle

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May 8, 1996






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The second part of the rite is where the circle comes into play. "A round circle is scraped on the ground to represent a buffalo wallow, and ... another round place is then made from the earth..." (23). They do this in order to achieve their goal in seeking wakan. Through the rite of releasing the souls, they also learn to be generous, to help those in need, and to follow in every way the teachings of Wanka-Taken (25)...
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"You are as the root of the wakan tree which is at the center of our nation's "hoop"" (27). The word hoop is in quotes, in which I will explain this term shortly. The traditional Lakota family, called tiyospaye, includes the extended family - aunts, uncles, grandfathers, etc., and friends that were "made family"...
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