Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - Slava Bogu!

Pages: [1] 2
The Feodorovski Cathedral & Gorodok / Our Lady of Tsarskoe Selo Icon
« on: June 24, 2009, 09:46:53 AM »
Can anybody help me with where I might purchase a copy of this icon?

The Imperial Family / Re: Romanovs and Faith/Orthodox Religion
« on: August 12, 2006, 11:19:20 AM »
I totally agree, Georgiy ... I guess that's why I asked in the first place. It should have been quite a straightforward case but apparently it wasn't at the time. (He's very easy to love ... I'm Catholic but I definitely have room in my heart for "poor Serafim"  :))

The Imperial Family / Re: Romanovs and Faith/Orthodox Religion
« on: August 11, 2006, 06:11:31 PM »
What was the IF's role, if any, in the 1903 canonization of Serafim Sarovskii? Also, I remember reading somewhere that it was something of a controversial canonization ... can anybody shed some light on why this was so?

Rasputin / Originals of Rasputin's Writings
« on: August 10, 2006, 09:15:45 AM »
Hi Helen_A,

Great question! If you return to the actual site, there are links to the original texts at the top of each English translation. Here they are:

My Thoughts and Reflections

Life of An Experienced Wanderer

Great Days of Celebration in Kiev (my favorite text)

The "Great Days of Celebration in Kiev" text is actually kind of neat to download because it appears to be a scan of a contemporary pamphlet and it's printed in the pre-Revolutionary alphabet. It also has a cool pic of Rasputin as a frontspiece.

Although I'm most open to correction, there are two factors which made me accept these versions as basically an accurate reflection of Rasputin's works, at least for the time being:

1. They match the excerpts of Rasputin's writings found in other sources (e.g. the Radzinsky biography, excerpts that were translated and/or adapted for the 1996 movie starring Alan Rickman)

2. They often sound like something dictated by an excited child ... which is exactly how I'd expect Rasputin to talk about such matters.

While I'm on the subject, I'd be most grateful if anyone could provide alternate links to online Russian-language versions of "My Thoughts and Reflections" and "Life of An Experienced Wanderer" ... ideally I would like to place the Russian-language versions on my own site but my current host does not permit non-English pages and I often have encoding issues while working with Cyrillic.

Rasputin / Rasputin's Writings Online in English
« on: July 28, 2006, 07:14:00 PM »
As I've seen some interest here in Rasputin's writings, I decided to translate excerpts of his work into English. No doubt I've made a number of mistakes, as I am not fluent in Russian, but it should allow readers to get a sense of the subject matter Rasputin used to write about and perhaps a glimpse of his quirky style. Anyway, if you're interested, check out my work in progress:

Rasputin / Re: Pictures of Rasputin
« on: June 26, 2006, 09:58:27 PM »
Thanks for posting these. I love the eyes ... they're so intense. In Petersburg, I came across the following contemporary sketch by E. N. Klokacheva:

It's softness suggests that the artist was quite comfortable with her subject. On a funny note, I heard what I thought was the best-ever comment on Rasputin's appearance from my aunt last week as she was looking through a collection of Rasputin images I brought from Russia: "Rather nice looking when he's cleaned up ... gorgeous eyes ... who is he, anyway?"  :P

Grishka, what do you like to paint when you're not painting Rasputin?

Rasputin / Rasputin text available for download
« on: June 22, 2006, 09:32:56 PM »
I haven't read it myself yet (too busy with "My Thoughts and Reflections"), but there's a scanned Russian-language copy of Rasputin's 1911 text "Great Days of Celebration in Kiev" available for download if anyone's interested:

Rasputin / Re: Portrait of Rasputin
« on: June 22, 2006, 09:20:01 PM »
Hi Grishka,

I'd love to see your other Rasputin portraits. If you're going to paint more, try working from a variety of photographs. In my opinion, Rasputin tends to look more guarded in post-1914 photographs ... there's just something about an assassination attempt that's very damaging to one's faith in one's fellow man, and of course, there was his anxiety over the war. I have two images here that might interest you. One is Grigorii in the 1890s as a wanderer and the other is him on vacation in Yalta in 1913. The latter is especially interesting because it shows Rasputin unusually relaxed. Anyway, good luck with your work. (I have to give credit to the Prostatology Center of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences for the images ... yes, the sex museum, but I actually picked these up in a bookstore on Nevsky Prospekt a couple of weeks ago.) I posted the images here:

Rasputin / Two Rasputin Essays
« on: June 22, 2006, 08:32:59 PM »
Hi Johnny ...

Do you know where I could find the two Rasputin essays you mentioned? Edited as they are, I'd be interested in seeing them ... are they available in English or French? If not, where can I find them in Russian? Also, do you happen to know the title of Teffi's autobiography?

Rasputin / Re: Reasons for canonization?
« on: May 20, 2006, 06:39:45 AM »
In response to above from Grigorevna:

"Wouldn't the real actions be more important than the rumor? Can the church really pay any attention to slander? "

I  would say that yes, I hope that officials in the Russian Orthodox Church (or anyone else, for that matter) would be as fair as possible when assessing the nature of someone's actions. I just bring up the reputation problem because canonization is so complex. Church officials would have to consider the concerete effects on people's thoughts and actions, among many other factors.

But, as has been said before, the canonization is not going to happen. How great the danger of schism is I cannot assess at this point.

I'm in Russia right now (across from Lubyanka in Moscow) so I won't be able to post much for a while but if I get wind of anything interesting over here, I'll keep it in mind.

Yes, I think Grishka is having a very good laugh right now ;D

Rasputin / Re: Reasons for canonization?
« on: May 17, 2006, 03:15:24 PM »
I can't answer all your questions, but I can point out a few resources:

Radzinsky's biography discusses the canonization issue briefly. The overall pro-canonization line of argument is basically that Rasputin was a very holy man who has been slandered for political reasons. Radzinsky highlights one of the more unfortunate aspects of the canonization movement, which is its connection with anti-Semitism. (An insult to Grishka's memory, in my opinion ... whatever else he might have been, Rasputin had shown a willingness to advocate for Jewish rights by the end of his life.)

If you want to hear an interview with a pro-canonization thinker, you can go here:

To read an article (now rather dated) on the Russian Orthodox Church's official position, look at:

Now, I'm Catholic, not Orthodox, but I think I can say with confidence that martyrdom and canonization do not necessarily go together in the Orthodox Church either. A martyr dies for his or her faith, but a person may be canonized for other reasons.

I agree that the whole canonization case is quite ridiculous ... and sad because of its divisiveness. As for myself, I've given up caring what Grigorii's sins were (or weren't) ... and I'm entirely content to let that be between Grishka and God. I make no secret of the fact that I feel that I've grown spiritually because of my long-term project of studying Grishka's life, that I admire certain things about the man, or that I've found his teachings, garbled as they may be, helpful during the personal crises I've experienced in the past year.

However, just as a "thought experiment", let's suppose that Grigorii was as pure as an angel and never did any of the bad things he's been accused of over the years. His canonization would still be terribly problematic simply because, given Rasputin's reputation, it would serve as a signal that anything goes. My confidence in the mercy of God tells me that there are many, many uncanonized saints in heaven, and I sincerely hope that Grishka is among them, but the ultimate purpose of canonization is to bring glory to God, and as things stand, I don't think that the canonization of Rasputin could ever accomplish that.

Rasputin / Re: Where to find Rasputin's teachings?
« on: May 17, 2006, 02:27:47 PM »
Actually, if you want to buy this book, which is in very limited circulation (2nd edition dates from 1965), your best bet is either or Copies are also sometimes found on Ebay. As for price ... right now there's a copy for about $23 on, which is the lowest price I've ever seen. Typically, prices for this book range from about $35 to $150. With a bit of comparison shopping, you should have no trouble finding a copy at the low end of this price range. Many copies out there are apparently signed by the author.

Rasputin / Rasputin's Teaching in ENGLISH
« on: May 15, 2006, 08:13:18 PM »
Actually, some of Rasputin's teachings are available in English and I have a copy. Elizabeth Judas's book "Rasputin: Neither Saint Nor Devil" contains transcriptions of some of the talks Rasputin gave at his home. These are, of course, written down by the author from memory and not by Rasputin himself. However, they do capture the spirit of Rasputin's teachings as recorded in his own (dictated) works and they reflect the same wildly non-linear style I've grown to know and love in working with Rasputin texts. Judas notes that there were many other such talks, but that the accompanying notes were lost in a Bolshevik raid.

I think what I admire about these talks is that they address issues that cut across denominational lines and they contain material that seems even more relevant in our own time. They have been very helpful to me. One theme that runs through the entries is Rasputin's call to become active participants in the world rather than passive victims. Another is the necessity of risk taking, especially the risk taking involved in building relationships with others.

Anyway, used copies of the book can be purchased but tend to be quite expensive. Having been written by an acquaintance of Rasputin's who saw him neither as a great starets nor as a demonic presence, it's a interesting read and a fine addition to any serious Rasputin collection.

Rasputin / Russian Copy of "My Thoughts and Reflections"
« on: May 13, 2006, 07:59:22 PM »
Thanks, Grigorevna.

There are three Rasputin texts (RUSSIAN ONLY) to be found in the "R" section at

The last of the three, apparently Rasputin's last letter, is perhaps of dubious authenticity (see, for example, Radzinsky). The other two are his spiritual reflections and match up well in style and content with other materials, including the messages Rasputin scribbled on drawings of himself when he was convalescing in Tobol'sk after Guseva's assassination attempt. This suggests that they were written (or more likely dictated) by Rasputin.

Just so everyone knows ... despite the fact that I accessed these documents where I did, I'm not part of the whole "canonization" movement. I'm not even Orthodox. (It is possible that the site I listed is so associated, but I can't say for sure. My Russian is not good enough for that.)

Rasputin / Translations of "My Thoughts and Reflections"
« on: May 06, 2006, 08:21:11 PM »
Hi ... does anyone know of any online and/or print translations of "My Thoughts and Reflections"? I'm looking for a translation in French or English. I have tried reading it in Russian, but my Russian is weak and Rasputin's use of language reflects his somewhat disconnected thinking. (In other words, it's very hard for a beginner in Russian.)


P.S. The Russian title of the text in question is "Moi mysli i razmyshleniya".

Pages: [1] 2