Home Book Reviews The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise

The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise



In the United States, ruled by an unsustainable culture of big businesses, politics, and greed, we are insatiable. Constantly searching for more nourishment, we are never full. Everyone is living in this perpetual state of emergency, but we still feel alone in the struggle.

In The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise, Martín Prechtel coalesces ancient wisdom and modern life. We seem to be far from our ancient roots, but Prechtel reconnects us by exploring issues such as war, money, and politics through the lens of a shaman and offers an invitation to heal our distressed souls through grief and praise. The Smell of Rain on Dust is an accompanying guide for those who need guidance and light in this seemingly dark and lonely world.

The world we know is Dry Dust that needs rain, and the world is becoming dryer and dryer as we love fewer people, pare down our beautiful language, and have trouble expressing praise for even the few people in their lives. Water is Beauty itself, and this Holy Water is present in everyone. When the world is dry, it is asking for praise. Occasionally, we will meet the rare soul that offers rain to the dry earth by praising many without malice. This person has loved the most, lost the most, and suffered the most grief, and Prechtel urges the reader to be this benevolent soul. The smell of rain on dust is a praise of the beauty in nature, the return of the Holy Water that is innate in all of us, and a blessing of life itself. Perhaps, after disconnecting from our smartphones and computers, we can learn to love, praise, and grieve and consequently smell the rain on dust.

Prechtel, M. (2015). The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books. ISBN: 978-1-58394-939-9.
Paperback. 171 pages.
Key words: grief, praise, tribal custom