Arvol Looking Horse was born on the Cheyenne River Reservation in South Dakota in 1954. Raised by his grandparents Lucy and Thomas Looking Horse, Arvol learned the culture and spiritual ways of the Lakota. He speaks both Lakota and English.
At 12, he was given the enormous responsibility of becoming the 19th generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe, the youngest in history. He has felt, on many occasions, overwhelmed by inheriting such a responsibility of the Lakota, Dakota & Nakota Nations at such a young age.
He was raised in an era and bore witness to the suppression of his peoples' spiritual practices. He decided to "work for change and let the world know how beautiful our way of life is, so the seventh generation can have a better future."
In Native Spirit and The Sun Dance Way, Arvol Looking Horse, of the Sioux tribe, reflects upon the central importance of maintaining the traditional ways.
He recalls the advice of Sitting Bull as he counsels modern day Indians on “living in two worlds.”