"Steinmetz served as a priest among the Lakota people of South Dakota from 1961 to 1981 and sought a unity between Native American beliefs and Roman Catholic theology. A simple prayer spoken at a reservation funeral became the catalyst for Steinmetz's 30-year exploration of the relationship between the image of Christ and the Sacred Pipe, a symbol of creation, renewal, and wholeness in many Native American traditions. Steinmetz's study draws upon the work of religious scholars Mircea Ellade and Karl Rahner, as well as the depth psychology of Carl Jung to provide a probing examination of the inner meaning of symbols in both Christian and Native American contexts. . . . A thoughtful perspective on the deep symbolism of the sacred; an extensive bibliography and thorough documentation complete this scholarly work."—Library Journal
Paul B. Steinmetz served as a Catholic priest among the Oglala Lakota in South Dakota from 1961 to 1981. During that time. at the funeral of Rex Long in 1965. Steinmetz prayed with the Sacred Pipe as an image of Christ. This prayer was the beginning of a thirty-year journey of intellectual discovery for Steinmetz, as he discovered the true meaning of the Sacred Pipe. This book—a combination of deep religious faith and brilliant analytic acumen—is the result.
Steinmetz writes that the sacred pipe—one of the most important ritual objects used by many tribes throughout North America—can best be understood in the context of Christian theology. Steinmetz presents an extensive ethnography about the sacred pipe and demonstrates how its many associations are really images of Christ.
In order to explicate fully this archetypal synthesis intuited at Rex Long Visitor’s funeral, Steinmetz draws heavily on, and critically compares, the works of Mircea Eliade, Carl Jung, and Karl Rahner.
Paul B. Steinmetz, S. J., served as a priest among the Oglala Lakota on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota from 1961 to 1981. He is the author of Pipe, Bible, and Peyote among the Oglala Lakota.
5.5 x 8, 232 pages