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Chanunpa, or Chanupa, (Lakota: čhaŋnúŋpa) is the Sioux language name for the sacred, ceremonial pipe and the ceremony in which it is used.

The Chanunpa is one means of conveying prayers to the Creator and the other sacred beings. The various parts of the pipe have symbolic meanings, and much of this symbolism is not shared with those outside of the culture.

The sacred pipe is smoked by many tribes, and what was smoked varied. The plants can include tobacco, red osier bark, bearberry leaves, and others.

Lakota tradition has it that White Buffalo Woman brought the Chanunpa to the people, to serve as a sacred bridge between this world and Wakan Tanka, the "Great Mystery".[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Rice, Julian (1998). Before the great spirit: the many faces of Sioux spirituality. University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 0-8263-1868-1.