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Author Topic: The truth about a monk and staret named Rasputin  (Read 6202 times) Average Rating: 0
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ChristianLove
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« on: January 15, 2008, 02:06:42 AM »

Just watched a movie alleging that an Orthodox monk by the name of Rasputin, had healing powers to heal the son of the Tzar of Russia, prior to the communist takeover, but that he would also get drunk and have orgies with many women at the drop of a hat. Wonder if the whole story is slanderous attack on a humble man of God, or if it's true that this monk might have lived an unholy life known to all Orthodox and never held accountable by anyone within the Orthodox Church?

My humble apologies in advance if my question might offend someone or if it is elemenatary knowledge to most Orthodox. First time I am hearing about this. Was glad to watch a movie to find out more about prerevolutionary Orthodox Russia, but this movie does not preseent a holy and Christ exalting Church prior to the atheists' takeover and their subsequent murder of 20 plus Million Orthodox believers. Thanks in advance for all your help.
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« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2008, 02:14:46 AM »

I think Rasputin was associated with some heretical group.  I do not think the Orthodox leaders respected him.
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« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2008, 02:17:53 AM »

I have always been fascinated by this monk. As for the orgies and drinking...It's possible he drank, as many Europeans (even Popes) do. The orgies? I've never heard this before, not even from my evangelical high school's history class (that was many years ago), so I can't help you there. I do not think Orthodox respect him much--he was certainly not canonized, afaik.
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« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2008, 02:22:42 AM »

From what I understand he was never a monk. He was married. As far as I know, the Russian Orthodox Church never considered him a holy man. In fact, I think they viewed him as a charlatan.
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« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2008, 02:32:14 AM »

Orgies are usually mentioned when referring to Rasputin since some argue that he investigated (others say more than 'just' investigated) the Khlysty sect, while others say this was entirely fabricated.

He is definitely an interesting character in history and there are so many theories on his life, his healings, and his political influence (let alone his assassination).  One of his legitimate daughters wrote about him and has influenced some historians' views on him, others say it is merely a daughter's rose-coloured view of her father.

By the way, which movie was it?  Was it 'Rasputin: The Mad Monk'?
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« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2008, 02:33:14 AM »

I read somewhere (sorry no references to give) that he spent time as a young man at a monastery or several monasteries, but that he was never tonsured.  The fact that he had children seems to back this up, yet he could've been tonsured later in life after his wife passed.   Seems that most pictures of Grigori Rasputin show him in monastic garb.  It's definately a very interesting story the facts of which, as they say, are shrouded in mystery.
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« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2008, 04:22:06 AM »

Patriarch Alexey commented on the strange suggestion about Rasputin's canonisation:

"This is madness!" the Patriarch said in his first statement on the subject in December 2001. "What believer would want to stay in a church that equally venerates murderers and martyrs, lechers and saints?"
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« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2008, 04:33:30 AM »

While the Flagellants (Khlisty) had a long prior history, the sect seems to have benefited from a revival of interest and popularity after the Skoptzy (Eunuchs) went into decline in the last quarter of the 19th century. Flagellation as practiced by its adherents (then generally styled Novokhlysty or New Flagellants) was sado-masochistic, as it had been in its earlier manifestations, and their "services" frequently culminated in orgiastic rituals, according to all contemporaneous reports. As Friul noted, it is a virtual certainty that Resputin associated with this group and, as Padre Ambrogio noted in a discussion that he and I lead at CAF, it fostered Rasputin's "strange view of morality, namely that man can be purified from sin only by totally indulging in it, and then living a catharsis of penance and purification". It certainly would have afforded him an introduction to the bizarre mix of asceticism, deviancy, healing, and mysticism associated with his memory.

I think it's also likely that he subsequently had contact with the Novyi Vek (People of the New Age), a sect that would have offered a further opportunity to develop the premises that Padre Ambrogio referenced, since the Novyi Vek refined the cyclical concepts of sin and purification well-beyond the rather crude formulations of the Novokhlysty.  The Novyi Vek, also derived from the historic model of the Khlisty, came to being in the last third of the 19th century as the inspiration of Alexei Shchetinin, a Caucasian. He believed that the Holy Spirit would descend on him once he had been baptized by immersion in sin, acknowledged it, and risen above it. This process was repetitive in his view, recurring each time one fell again into sin and subsequently was saved by grace. The ideas espoused by Shchetinen achieved no small measure of notoriety since they invariably involved a plunge into debauchery for a day or more, succeeded by a graced period (termed holy passionlessness), during which the Novyi Vek would concern themselves with prayer, fasting, and good works. When one’s capacity to morally sin recurred, he could anticipate what assuredly must have seemed to be a license to repeat debauchery, safe in the knowledge that it would be followed by re-baptism. Rasputin's alleged visions, prophecies, and healings would have been very consistent with the claims of the Novyi Vek as to the spiritual benefits derived from their excesses.

As to the OP's concern that the picture painted of Rasputin, allegedly a monk, reflects badly on Holy Orthodoxy in Russia of the time, I think it's imperative to understand the climate and historical circumstances that laid a foundation for this kind of thing and to realize that bodies (such as I described above) had little or nothing to do with mainstream Orthodoxy nor with the Old Ritualist/Old Believer movement to which they're sometimes erroneously attributed - since the majority of them arose contemporaneously with the latter.

Although often generically labeled as Bespopovtsy, these sects would have been outright rejected by the Bespopovtsy. They were driven by such considerations as extremism (under the guise of religious fervor), fanaticism, self-aggrandizement, superstition, and zealotry. To my mind, they probably are best classed as Irrational (or Eccentric), Radical, and Extremist sects.

The Irrational (or Eccentric) sects embraced a range of beliefs, frequently mixing secular and religious symbolism, and “different” enough to be classed as “strange”. It’s a generic label for those who shunned the often deadly praxis seen among the Extremists but were, at least somewhat, less theologically bizarre in their tenets than the Radicals. Examples would include: the Dyrniki (Hole-Worshipers) who eschewed the use of icons and prayed toward and through holes in the Eastern walls of their worship houses, watching and waiting for God’s appearance; the Holy Thursday Gapers who kept their mouths open or agape throughout services on that day awaiting spiritual eucharistic sustenance from angels; and, Shepotzi (Whisperers) who perceived the spoken word as a vehicle for sin, but believed that, by whispering (even when praying orally), they could minimize the occasions for sin to which they were exposed.

Those I'd term Radical were principally, but not entirely, millenarian in outlook. Their beliefs and/or praxis exceeded the bounds that would have allowed them to be classed among the Irrational Sects, but, generally, were not so bizarre as to merit being deemed Extremist Sects. These included such as: the Apokalipticheskaya Sekta (Apocalyptic Sect), which set 1666 as the year in which the world would end; the Dvoeverie (Dual-Faith Believers), who incorporated pre-Christian pagan symbolism, praxis, and deities into an otherwise outwardly-Christian worship environment; and, the Napoleoniki (Napoleonites), who perceived the Emperor as the herald of the Second Coming.

Extremists sects were those whose primitive, unusual, or violent praxis and/or beliefs either did not reflect traditional Old Believer ideology or theology or carried it to excesses that surpassed generally accepted norms. Some such groups clearly used the Old Believer movement as a spring-board, from which to promote various bizarre cultic agendas. Most, but not all, of the bodies which centered on extremist behavior, are no longer extant, although rumors invariably abound that secret communities survive in isolation. Many of the most extreme sects were most prominent in the early years of the Old Believer movement; the self-destructive nature of the practices that they advocated virtually assured extinction or devolution into relative obscurity subsequent to ritualistic deaths pursued by their fanatic leaders and principal adherents. Besides such as I already referenced, there were such others as: Bezbrachniki (Free-Lovers) who practiced what has been termed complex marriage in other communal settings, a construct in which every member is theoretically “married” to every member of the opposite sex and exclusive relationships are discouraged, if not forbidden; Duchelstchiki (Stranglers) who  practiced ritual strangulation as a means to hasten one’s acceptance into the Elect for those who were elderly or seriously ill, based on interpretation of a text from Matthew that they perceived as requiring a violent death to be assured of entrance into Heaven; and, Ognenniye Kreshcheniya (Fire-Baptizers) who believed that burning christening, as Avvakum had spoken of it, would cleanse them from all earthly transgressions and assure their salvation - the fire in which they enveloped themselves being both their first and last spiritual acts, causing them, at once, to be both enrolled among the elect and entered into the presence of their Savior.
 
These aberrant ecclesio-sociological phenomena in no way represented Holy Orthodoxy or Old Ritualism, priested or priestless. They originated, in many instances, as a manifestation of the superstitions that were inherent among poverty-stricken, poorly educated persons on the bottom strata of a feudalistic culture. Personification of the Anti-Christ, until then only an intangible scriptural concept, couldn't help but evoke images of all that was foretold in Revelations, including the Apocalypse and Second-Coming. In the more traditional manifestations, there was rejoicing in anticipation of a promised after-life. As one progressed across the continuum, there were other reactions: resigned acceptance of the inevitable end of corporeal life; presumption that these dire events could be forestalled or mitigated through appeasement of the supernatural powers; and, outright despair regarding what was to come. Literalism, eccentricity, fatalism, fear, folklore, superstition - all became contributing factors to the outlook of the adherents and helped to drive their theology and praxis. Somewhere in such a continuum there existed powerful forces ripe to feed zealotry and fanaticism, as people were driven to seek that which would assure (or at least increase the odds of) their salvation or allow them license to do what they would have perceived unacceptable in a society that still had hope of salvation. It was such thinking that spawned many of these sects, particularly the more radical and extreme of them, and individuals such as Rasputin.

Many years,

Neil, with apologies for (I'm sure) having bludgeoned the transliterations into the English alphabet in many instances
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« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2008, 04:40:14 AM »

Patriarch Alexey commented on the strange suggestion about Rasputin's canonisation:

"This is madness!" the Patriarch said in his first statement on the subject in December 2001. "What believer would want to stay in a church that equally venerates murderers and martyrs, lechers and saints?"

I must say I asked myself the same question when someone proudly informed me that Theodosius (I can't bring myself to call him "Saint" nor "Great") had homosexuals burned - as some kind of penance, if I remember the details correctly.  Sad

Concerning the OP.

ChristianLove,

As I recall, Robert Massie's book, "Nicholas and Alexandra", has an excellent account of Rasputin and his relationship with the Royal Saints.
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« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2008, 03:31:56 AM »

Thanks all. I had been told by Orthodox Christians that prior to being taken over by soviets, Russia was a very spiritual Orthodox country, filled with monasteries and spiritual Christians everywhere. Then antireligious communists took over and murdered/martyred at least 20 million Orthodox believers, as well as closed all the spiritual centers of the Orthodox Church in Russia.

The movie I saw is called "Nicholas and Alexandra", which came out in 1971, that is supposed to be based on the book by same name. They show a monk by the name of Rasputin, who would openly grab several women and have unholy sexual times with them and at his murder, he is shown as having disgusting homosexual "affairs" with those who murdered him. The movie does not explicitly show anything, but simply showed enough to know there was obvious lots of sinful activities within the life of Orthodox staret, Rasputin. The movie did also present the socialist communist party as very friendly and no part of the movie shows a great respect for the faith, although they do show the wife of the Czar, very devout Orthodox, who always listened to this staret Rasputin. Rasputin also brought about several healings to her son, and correctly prophesied several times, and prior to his death, prophesied about his death and the death of all of the Tzar's family.

Not sure how truthful this movie is, since it was so friendly to the communists throughout, having us feel sorry for Stalin and Lenin, as they worked hard to win back the country for rationalistic people loving leaders  Shocked right  Huh All done in the name of democratic freedoms for Russian away from the rule of Czars of Russia.

Now, I'm concerned about coming across as self-righteous judgemental outside of God's Will and always want to remain in the reality of calling out to God as a sinner in need of His Great Mercies. However, I'm a bit confused about Rasputin's relationship with Christians and the Church? If he was a priest with this kind of lifestyle, how was he not kept accountable to God's Church and his Bishop? if he was a monk, how are monks kept accountable by the Church? If he was faithful and holy, and these movies are slanderous, why doesn't the Church come to his side?

I sometimes wonder about the meaning of Paul's words in his letter to the Corinthians (in 1 Corinthians 5 and 6), where he calls all believers to remember that they will one day judge the angels; therefore, how much more they should deal with a man in the Church who is living in sexual sin immediately and not allow he who calls himself a Christian to blaspheme Christ's name through unholy lifestyle. And we are also called to not judge unrighteously, for by the same measure we judge, we shall be judged one day, and even in the midst of righteous judgement, we can never be comparing our righteousness with another, but always call to God for His Mercies on us sinners in the face of His Perfect and Holy Standards of Love guided purity. I have wondered how are the only 2 Orthodox senators in America able to proclaim horrible abortion policies and receive our Patriarch's blessings at the same time and how can sometimes holy men of God live in sin, but when caught, only be moved from parish to parish, causing harm to other children and unsuspecting victims, without being called to judgement by the Church? And how do we live Galatians 6:1-4 under these circumstances while not walking away from our calling to hold one another accountable to a holy calling, especially when someone calls themselves a Christian and at the same time, get out of Gods' way when He is patiently and faithfully working along the journey of faith for the fallen one who gets back up to continue in God's Grace?

Appreciate any and all Orthodox fathers' practical understanding of God's Love along this line and in regards to Rasputin's life testimony, since according to the movie, he was almost single handedly responsible for bringing down Russia  Roll Eyes.

Thanks kindly.
humbly in God's Service,

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« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2008, 07:08:38 AM »

Appreciate any and all Orthodox fathers' practical understanding of God's Love along this line and in regards to Rasputin's life testimony, since according to the movie, he was almost single handedly responsible for bringing down Russia  Roll Eyes.

To a degree it is true that Rasputin played a big part in the downfall of the Romanovs. At the time of the revolution, Russia was at war with Germany and the Empress Alexandra was German. She wasn't all that popular because people saw her cold and austere and this made her an easy target for slander. Pornographic cartoons were circulated depicting Rasputin having sex with the Tsarina (and her four daughters also).

The Royal Family were somewhat distant from the public arena where Rasputin's shenanigans were common knowledge and when word of his indiscretions made their way to the palace, the Empress Alexandra - because she truly believed that he was a holy man, capable of healing her son - vehemently defended him. She even fell out with her sister, the Grand-duchess Elizabeth, over him.

When Tsar Nicholas began to realise that Rasputin was a problem, he tried to remove him from court, but the Tsarina was too dependant on him. The Tsarina has received much unjust criticism over her dependance on Rasputin. What we have to understand is that she was a mother, and like any mother with an invalided child she was desperate for a cure.   

Another book regarding this time period that you might find interesting is "An Englishman in the Court of the Tsar: The Spiritual Journey of Charles Syndney Gibbes".

From the blurb on the inside flap:

Out of the dampness of a Lond morning steps an elderly, white-bearded man in a threadbard cassock. He carries a walking stick in his right hand, and a tattered black shopping bag on his left arm. His name is Father Nicholas Gibbes.
Warm and affable, yet intensely private, he seldom speakes of the incredible journey which carried him from the hallowed halls of St. John's College in Cambridge to the court of the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II. As one of three tutors to the Imperial Family, he had gained entrance to the inner world of the ill-fated Family. First as teach, but soon as trusted friend and confidant, he walked with them through the dark days of their exile and eventual murder at the hands of the Bosheviks. These ten years would change the course of his life, eventually leading him back to Great Britain, where he would devote himself the rest of his days in service to the Faith he had discovered in the midst of the court of the Tsar.

Centering her research around actual letters and documents from the Gibbes collections in England and numerous personal interviews with the late George Gibbes, adopted son of Father Nicholas, as well as other surviving acquaintances and friends, the author has carefully documented this fascinating story as Gibbes journeys from Great Britain to Russia, Siberia, China, the Philippines, Jerusalem, and finally back again to England. Benaugh's account profits from newly uncovered evidence regarding the murders of the Imperial Family and offers details which were unknown during the lifetime of Fr. Nicholas. She carefully documents hitherto unpublished events of his life in England as an Orthodox priest and his foundational role in establishing the Orthodox Church in Oxford as well as his pioneering role in the development of British Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2008, 08:22:39 AM »

Interesting thread. My two "equally first" languages are Ukrainian and Russian and I grew up in the former USSR, so I have done a good share of reading about Grigoriy Rasputin.

It really does seem that different sources picture him very differently, depending on the souce's political views. If I were to hold a middle line, then preciously little remains. He was not a monk, he indeed had a wife. He, indeed, had some connection with the "Flagellants" sect ("khlisti" or "khlysty") when he was young. In his mature years, when he was living in St. Petersburg, he became rich and famous and enormously influential, so probably he had his share of drinking and he might have had relationships with women, although his "orgying" and "wild lewd sex life" is probably the product of deliberate, very well-organized slander of the anti-Nicholas II (or of the pro-Great Prince Nikolay Nikolayevich) palace party.

The royal family in the 1900-s and especially the 1910's was deeply divided. Only a small part of it supported the Emperor while a larger part considered the Emperor weak and unfit to rule; they wanted him out and to be replaced by his very flamboyant and dominant uncle, Great Prince N.N. Romanov. This "pro-Nikolay Nikolayevich" party had connections with some of the richest men in the Empire, like an industrial and financial tycoon called Alexander Guchkov, who later became one of the leaders of the February 1917 "revolution" - in fact, rather, the February 1917 coup-d'etat. Guchkov also later became one of the leaders of the Provisional Government of Russia of February-October 1917. In ~1913-1916, he and his political friends - Milyukov, Prince L'vov, Purishkevich, Count Sumarokov-Elston and others produced a lot of fake letters, journals etc., where Rasputin was deliberately depicted as a monster, a drunkard, a pervert and a lover of the Empress Alexandra.

I think it is still very difficult to evaluate the figure of Rasputin. He certainly was a faithful Orthodox Christian, even though in his young years he had some weird "spiritual advisers," and even though he, like many others in that time, had some eccentric views and superstitions. He most definitely was a faithful, devoted friend of the royal family. On the other hand, he was very heavily immersed in politics, intrigues, squabbles among the royals. So, not being in the least his hater or enemy, I can understand the reluctance of the Russian Orthodox Church to canonize him.
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« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2009, 02:36:07 AM »

I sometimes wonder about the meaning of Paul's words in his letter to the Corinthians (in 1 Corinthians 5 and 6), where he calls all believers to remember that they will one day judge the angels; therefore, how much more they should deal with a man in the Church who is living in sexual sin immediately and not allow he who calls himself a Christian to blaspheme Christ's name through unholy lifestyle. And we are also called to not judge unrighteously, for by the same measure we judge, we shall be judged one day, and even in the midst of righteous judgement, we can never be comparing our righteousness with another, but always call to God for His Mercies on us sinners in the face of His Perfect and Holy Standards of Love guided purity. I have wondered how are the only 2 Orthodox senators in America able to proclaim horrible abortion policies and receive our Patriarch's blessings at the same time and how can sometimes holy men of God live in sin, but when caught, only be moved from parish to parish, causing harm to other children and unsuspecting victims, without being called to judgement by the Church? And how do we live Galatians 6:1-4 under these circumstances while not walking away from our calling to hold one another accountable to a holy calling, especially when someone calls themselves a Christian and at the same time, get out of Gods' way when He is patiently and faithfully working along the journey of faith for the fallen one who gets back up to continue in God's Grace?

I wonder too my friend. These are questions I wrestle with as well, especially during this time of Lent. I am so weak and unfaithful in my own Christian walk. I am ashamed of my lack of faith and my failure to discipline my fleshly appetites. My words and beliefs are too far removed from my daily actions and thoughts. May Our Lord have mercy upon me!

And yet, I think most of us who profess Orthodoxy would confess the same- if we are honest. But there is a big difference between striving for righteousness and falling short again and again, and blatant approval and support of immorality and evil.

I will use an example that I in no way mean to become political: I was not personally angered by Bill Clinton's infidelity. I did not condone it, but neither did I condemn him for his moral failure. I have had too many moral failures of my own, and I understand very easily how a person can succumb to temptation. But Bill Clinton's pro-abortion policies did anger me. Supporting abortion is not a personal moral failure or a momentary lapse of judgment in the face of temptation. Abortion is the deliberate destruction of a defenseless human life, and Bill Clinton knows it. Yet he supported this barbaric practice 100%.

So, I as well am disturbed when I see professing Christians in positions of influence refusing to oppose evil and stand for righteousness. And I do not think it is uncharitable or hypocritical to call these leaders out on these issues. In fact, I think it is un-Christian not to warn them of the spiritual dangers that they bring upon themselves by their rebellion aginst the laws of God. Especially when the laws they violate involve life and death.

But that is my humble opinion. And for now, I shall focus on removing the large beam that is lodged in my own eye.

Blessed Lent!

Selam
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« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2009, 08:30:42 AM »

Only Boney M knows the truth about Rasputin:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvDMlk3kSYg

{/Humorous Aside}
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« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2009, 10:30:29 AM »

Abortion is the deliberate destruction of a defenseless human life, and Bill Clinton knows it. Yet he supported this barbaric practice 100%.

Errr? Rasputin?
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« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2009, 12:29:12 PM »

Abortion is the deliberate destruction of a defenseless human life, and Bill Clinton knows it. Yet he supported this barbaric practice 100%.

Errr? Rasputin?

You know. William Jefferson Rasputin.


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« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2009, 06:40:48 PM »

Abortion is the deliberate destruction of a defenseless human life, and Bill Clinton knows it. Yet he supported this barbaric practice 100%.

Errr? Rasputin?

You know. William Jefferson Rasputin.

ROFL! Cheesy
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« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2009, 08:25:17 PM »

Rasputin was a super 1337 hax0r omg!


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« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2009, 09:35:38 PM »

Only Boney M knows the truth about Rasputin:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvDMlk3kSYg

{/Humorous Aside}

That You Tube performance was pretty funny!
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« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2010, 08:09:13 PM »

What do you think about his alleged ability to heal the tsarevich and his alleged prophecies?
The boy was very sick and he showed up and looked at the boy and the boy supposedly felt better.
Unless it was magic, maybe the Tsarevich's condition wasn't as severe as feared, it naturally came and went, and he was able to use hypnosis.

Maybe the prophecies were very good guesswork or partly fabricated?

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« Reply #20 on: August 15, 2010, 09:04:07 PM »

Rasputin was a ten-foot tall bear of a man, who showered in vodka, and fed his daughter live scorpions.  Using his thigh as an anvil, he once shod all of the tsar's mules and horses in two hours!  This other time, I asked Rasputin to dress up as Santa for a Christmas party I was having for my children. Anyway, he shows up dressed as Santa, reeking of Johnnie Walker Black Label, and says I've got goodies for you kids.  He reaches into his bag and proceeds to hand out scrap metal and cigarettes to them. Then he stands up and says, "There is no Santa cause I ate him"!  I was kinda mad, but what was I gonna do?  He's Rasputin!
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« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2010, 09:39:16 PM »

The greatest danger a hemophiliac faces is not bleeding to death (as many understandably assume), but dying from the consequences of "closed bleeding": internal bleeding, or from the complications of swelling of bumps and bruises which can cause immense pain, or press on vital organs, nerves or other structures, or if the haematomas (collections of blood, i.e. bruises) become infected.

These days, most hemophiliacs can live essentially normal, healthy lives, if they have regular doses of Factor VIII, the blood clotting substance which their bodies are unable to produce.

Quote
The boy was very sick and he showed up and looked at the boy and the boy supposedly felt better.


First-hand accounts show this was not the case. The Tsareyevitch's condition was never "instantly" relieved by the presence of Rasputin.
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« Reply #22 on: August 15, 2010, 09:45:17 PM »

I believe it was in the book "Nicholas and Alexandra" that I read this:  Rasputin made everyone leave the room except the boy's mother, and insisted that everyone around him be quiet (i.e., calmed them down) so the boy could rest, which caused a temporary remission to the symptoms.  Rasputin may have claimed this as a "miraculous healing" or perhaps others did.  But he did seem to be able to at least help temporarily.  Which undoubtedly endeared him to the Empress.
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« Reply #23 on: August 15, 2010, 09:51:37 PM »

Why was this thread revived? Is it not understood, still, that Griroriy Rasputin was a sad, sad impostor whose soul needs our prayer and whose sorry personality (...mmm. I'd say, "whose sorry a..." - but I won't go any furhter...) needs our prayers?
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« Reply #24 on: August 15, 2010, 10:02:23 PM »

Rasputin was a ten-foot tall bear of a man, who showered in vodka, and fed his daughter live scorpions.  Using his thigh as an anvil, he once shod all of the tsar's mules and horses in two hours!  This other time, I asked Rasputin to dress up as Santa for a Christmas party I was having for my children. Anyway, he shows up dressed as Santa, reeking of Johnnie Walker Black Label, and says I've got goodies for you kids.  He reaches into his bag and proceeds to hand out scrap metal and cigarettes to them. Then he stands up and says, "There is no Santa cause I ate him"!  I was kinda mad, but what was I gonna do?  He's Rasputin!

that sounds like an SNL Bill Brasky story ...
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« Reply #25 on: August 15, 2010, 10:12:02 PM »

Why was this thread revived?

Because my good buddy Rakovsky is running around playing thread necromancer tonight, for some reason!



But yeah, Rasputin was certainly an extraordinary individual.  Rather than being birthed like a normal child, he instead decided to punch his way out and clothesline his awestruck father like King Harley Race. A few seconds later, he grew his trademark beard.  As a young man, Rasputin sold his soul to the devil in exchange for his rugged good looks and magnetic charisma. Shortly after the transaction was finalized, however, the mad monk choke-slammed Satan and took his soul back. The devil, who appreciates irony, couldn’t stay mad and admitted he should have seen it coming. They now play poker every second Wednesday of the month.

But Rasputin's not all brawn and no brains, you know.  In fact, he one spanked Gary Kasparov in a game of chess using only a black king.
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« Reply #26 on: August 15, 2010, 10:16:34 PM »

Rasputin was a ten-foot tall bear of a man, who showered in vodka, and fed his daughter live scorpions.  Using his thigh as an anvil, he once shod all of the tsar's mules and horses in two hours!  This other time, I asked Rasputin to dress up as Santa for a Christmas party I was having for my children. Anyway, he shows up dressed as Santa, reeking of Johnnie Walker Black Label, and says I've got goodies for you kids.  He reaches into his bag and proceeds to hand out scrap metal and cigarettes to them. Then he stands up and says, "There is no Santa cause I ate him"!  I was kinda mad, but what was I gonna do?  He's Rasputin!

that sounds like an SNL Bill Brasky story ...

Brasky wishes he was Rasputin.  In fact, he's scared of Rasputin.  Can't say I blame him though.  Contrary to popular belief, Rasputin, not the box jellyfish of northern Australia, is the most venomous creature on earth. Within three minutes of being stung by one of his beard hairs, a human being experiences the following symptoms: fever, blurred vision, beard rash, baggy eyes, and the feeling of being repeatedly punched in the chest with brass knuckles.
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« Reply #27 on: August 15, 2010, 10:25:34 PM »

Now here's something to think about: In a fight between Rasputin and Chuck Norris, who would win?  Wink laugh laugh
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« Reply #28 on: August 15, 2010, 10:46:46 PM »

They actually tangled once!  The fight started in a pub in Ireland and served as the basis for the fight between John Wayne and Victor McLaglen in The Quiet Man.  Before their little scrap, Ireland was actually connected to the rest of Great Britain.  They fought across the continent of Europe for more than a month, causing more damage than World War II, and eventually ended up in Beirut (which was a pretty nice place before they showed up).  It was there that Rasputin eventually KO'd Norris by bashing him in the head with a freight train that'd been stuck in his bootstrap since they'd fought their way through Poland.  Rasputin agreed to let Norris live on the condition that he'd start driving a GAZ Group Ural-6370 dumptruck instead of a Dodge on Walker, Texas Ranger.
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« Reply #29 on: August 15, 2010, 11:18:49 PM »

Ooooh, someone who's tougher than Chuck Norris! Wow!   Shocked Shockedlaugh laugh
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« Reply #30 on: August 16, 2010, 01:18:58 AM »

Rasputin was a ten-foot tall bear of a man, who showered in vodka, and fed his daughter live scorpions.  Using his thigh as an anvil, he once shod all of the tsar's mules and horses in two hours!  This other time, I asked Rasputin to dress up as Santa for a Christmas party I was having for my children. Anyway, he shows up dressed as Santa, reeking of Johnnie Walker Black Label, and says I've got goodies for you kids.  He reaches into his bag and proceeds to hand out scrap metal and cigarettes to them. Then he stands up and says, "There is no Santa cause I ate him"!  I was kinda mad, but what was I gonna do?  He's Rasputin!

Hilarious.

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« Reply #31 on: August 16, 2010, 12:05:46 PM »

Ooooh, someone who's tougher than Chuck Norris! Wow!   Shocked Shockedlaugh laugh

It was never a fair competition, really.  While baby Norris was still playing with his Lincoln Logs, Lil' Rasputin was gutting it out through four hour, prostration intensive, pewless, Russian liturgies!  Wink

It's a shame he left the Church, though!  Did you know Rasputin was the one who taught the Rastas to smoke weed?  Before he swam, non-stop, from the frozen port of St. Petersburg to Kingston, Jamaica in four hours flat, they were smoking Chesterfields.
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« Reply #32 on: August 16, 2010, 12:59:45 PM »

When Masse wrote "Nicholas and Alexandera" he did not have access to many of the records that were opened after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. More details about the Romanovs, and those close to them have been available recently. One very interesting treatment of the Romanovs and thier millue is:
The Last Tsar, by Edvard Radzinsky:
http://www.amazon.com/Last-Tsar-Life-Death-Nicholas/dp/0385469624/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1281977469&sr=1-1
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« Reply #33 on: August 16, 2010, 08:37:48 PM »

When Masse wrote "Nicholas and Alexandera" he did not have access to many of the records that were opened after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. More details about the Romanovs, and those close to them have been available recently. One very interesting treatment of the Romanovs and thier millue is:
The Last Tsar, by Edvard Radzinsky:
http://www.amazon.com/Last-Tsar-Life-Death-Nicholas/dp/0385469624/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1281977469&sr=1-1

Perhaps an even better primary source is Andrei Maylunas and Sergei Mironenko's A Lifelong Passion - Nicholas and Alexandra, their own story, a 700-page compilation of correspondence, diary entries, and memoirs from the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881, to the assassination of the imperial family (including Grand Duchess Elizabeth and those with her) in 1918, between Nicholas, Alexandra, members of their respective families, and members of the imperial court. It is not a novel, nor is it historical analysis. It is the words of the people themselves. I thoroughly recommend this book.
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« Reply #34 on: August 16, 2010, 09:19:57 PM »

When Masse wrote "Nicholas and Alexandera" he did not have access to many of the records that were opened after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. More details about the Romanovs, and those close to them have been available recently. One very interesting treatment of the Romanovs and thier millue is:
The Last Tsar, by Edvard Radzinsky:
http://www.amazon.com/Last-Tsar-Life-Death-Nicholas/dp/0385469624/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1281977469&sr=1-1

Perhaps an even better primary source is Andrei Maylunas and Sergei Mironenko's A Lifelong Passion - Nicholas and Alexandra, their own story, a 700-page compilation of correspondence, diary entries, and memoirs from the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881, to the assassination of the imperial family (including Grand Duchess Elizabeth and those with her) in 1918, between Nicholas, Alexandra, members of their respective families, and members of the imperial court. It is not a novel, nor is it historical analysis. It is the words of the people themselves. I thoroughly recommend this book.


Ironically enough, Rasputin himself has never read either of those tomes.  Rasputin doesn't read books.  He stares them down until he gets the information he wants.  Then he put their authors in a figure four leg lock.  Pray Rasputin never reads your book.
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