Our Lakota/Dakota/Nakota worldview is rooted in the philosophy of Mitakuye Oyasin “we are all related.” This philosophy permeates through every aspect of our way of life.
We can see the importance of Mitakuye Oyasin in our traditional greetings. When greeting someone it was, and is, important to address them according to how one was related.
Lakota Greetings for Males part 1*
Háu Até (Hello Father)
Háu Iná (Hello Mother)
Háu Tȟuƞkášila (Hello Grandfather)
Háu Uƞčí (Hello Grandma)
Háu Kȟolá (Hello (male) friend)
Traditional Lakota/Dakota/Nakota views on how one was related differ from traditional western views of the nuclear family. Additionally, names carried a deeper meaning than simply meaning Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grandpa and so on.
An example is the word Kȟolá. While interpreted to mean friend, it actually carries a much deeper meaning. One interpretation of Kȟolá is that it is a person one is willing to give their life for.
Wakinyan Waanatan (Matt Remle)
*Note: Words are enunciated so that listeners can hear the sounds of Lakota dialect.
**For Dakota and Nakota dialect speakers simply change the “L” with “D” or “N”. For example: KȟoLá (Lakota), KȟoDá (Dakota), KȟoNá (Nakota)