A Buffalo (Bison) on the Savannah
Book Reviews,  Character

The Lakota Way

Joseph M. Marshall’s thoughtful, illuminating account of how the spiritual beliefs of the Lakota people can help us all lead more meaningful, ethical lives.

Rich with storytelling, history, and folklore, The Lakota Way expresses the heart of Native American philosophy and reveals the path to a fulfilling and meaningful life. Joseph Marshall is a member of the Sicunga Lakota Sioux and has dedicated his entire life to the wisdom he learned from his elders. Here he focuses on the twelve core qualities that are crucial to the Lakota way of life–bravery, fortitude, generosity, wisdom, respect, honour, perseverance, love, humility, sacrifice, truth, and compassion. Whether teaching a lesson on respect imparted by the mythical Deer Woman or the humility embodied by the legendary Lakota leader Crazy Horse, The Lakota Way offers a fresh outlook on spirituality and ethical living.


I was not sure what to expect when I started out with this book, but what I found in the covers is a concise lesson in what it takes to be human, a citizen of this planet wandering the cosmos. The book quotes Lakota stories and myths to explain the 12 virtues that are key to The Lakota Way:

  • humility,
  • perseverance,
  • respect,
  • honour,
  • love,
  • sacrifice,
  • truth,
  • compassion,
  • bravery,
  • fortitude,
  • generosity, and
  • wisdom.

As we are read these stories, along with more modern interpretations that bring them to date, we learn about ourselves and how we should be living, and how to be better people. Many of these virtues are also espoused by popular self-help books, though the stories in this book are far more memorable and, in some cases, emotionally moving.

A must-read if you want to be a better human (and also understand more about the Lakota).

Get the book from Audible or Amazon.

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