Author Topic: Alexandra and Rasputin  (Read 137443 times)

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sushismom

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Alexandra and Rasputin
« on: January 28, 2004, 12:58:30 PM »
Although most accounts of Alexandra say she was influenced by Rasputin and did as he told her to do, I tend to believe otherwise. This was a woman who for all intents and purposes felt that she was the backbone of her weak-willed husband. It's my belief that Rasputin knew what she wanted to hear and that his influence was much less than usually believed.

investigator

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2004, 09:09:20 PM »
In my opinion Alexandra had a lot to worry about.  Firstly, she had a weak husband who was also a weak ruler.  Secondly, she had a son, who was heir to the throne but he was sick and would never become Tsar.  Thirdly, she was well aware of how people felt about her.  Fourthy, Rasputin was a great influence on her because he had been able to save Tsarvich Alexei when the doctors failed to do so.  Rasputin did have influence over Alexandra and there is no doubt about that.  But inspite of all this Alexandra was a vulnerable woman and she had to take charge because someone had to take a stand.  Her weakness was her son and Rasputin was hope sent by God, she clinged to Rasputin and believed that he could save her son from death.  But she also feared Rasputin because she became really upset when Rasputin was sent away by the Tsar.  She became desperate because he must have put some negative issues in her mind.  For example in his will it was written that if any one of their relatives were his cause of death then all of them will be killed by the Russian people.  Now Alexandra's reaction at this was, she became hysterical.  She believed in Rasputin with all her heart and this was because of Alexei. Had Alexei been a normal child, there would have been no Rasputin.  Now the general masses were not aware of Alexei's sickness, so they saw Alexandra and Rasputin as partners in crime.  There were very few people who knew about Alexei and Rasputin took advantage of that.

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2004, 09:08:47 PM »
Very good points, Investigator....

sushismom

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2004, 01:15:28 PM »
While I agree that Alexandra depended on Rasputin I believe that it was primarily where Alexei was concerned. She knew he had the ability to help her son and thus was extremely upset when he was sent away. However, I still think that politically Rasputin had little influence on her. She herself has said that she "longs to poke her nose into everything" and that she "has on trousers unseen".

Joanna Mayer

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2004, 10:33:20 AM »
Well,
I think that AF was most decicedly influenced by Rasputin...She had a history of encouraging faith healers, mystics "astral doctors" (M. Philip from France)
and the like. When she converted to Orthodoxy I think that she became a little unhinged, and became a real Muskovite Tsaritsa - more Orthodox than the Orthodox.
Mind you I am not trying to say that religion is wrong - but sometimes some folks just seem to become a little irrational. She believed that Rasputin was the very voice of God -he seemed to save her son when noone else could- so she listened to him.
The behaviour is understandable but still not healthy.

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2004, 01:39:24 PM »
Nicholas and Alexandra prayed with all their heart for God's help to save their son.  Rasputin appears and everytime he is called upon his prayers appear to save their son.  Think of it from Alix's perspective -since you believe completely in God,  in Christianity and God's love and you have asked Him for help how could you deny the emmissary who carried His answer?

How could God be so cruel and to send a devil to save your son - remember the Gospels and what Jesus says about prayer - "when a son asks his Father for a loaf a bread does he give him a stone?"  How could Alexandra doubt Rasputin without doubting God?  To doubt God would have pulled the very foundation out from underneath her life the essense of who whe was.  Eveything would have collapsed.

Each time Rasputin came back and 'did it again' Alexandra found it harder and harder to look at what was happening objectively; faith was the only answer she could find.  She was not a casual or nominal Christian.  As she was growing up her teachers pushed her towards a Lutheranism based on personal & intellectual conviction.  When she professed Christ it was not a nominal act done to satisfy others, but the outward sign of an inner transformation.  This faith in God, along with her love for Nicholas, were the two most important factors in her spiritual, emotional and even intellectual life.  Her 'reason for being' and indeed the very meaning of life flowed between the banks of these two passions, these two loves; one for God and the other for a man.

I am sure Alix prayed for hours and anquished about Rasputin - as an intelligent woman she must have had doubts.  In the end the consequences of him not being from God where so utterly mind-boggling, so terrible in any other explanation that she found it impossible to accept the negative things that people were saying.

As for Rasputin's advice I think she and Nichiolas listened to him when  it agreed wsith their own opinions.  Rasputin was clever in this regard he didn't express opinions or advice that didn't match up with the views he thought the Imperial couple already held.  The one exception to this was his opposition to the war, which he passionately expressed and Nicholas ignored.  This time they should have listened.


Joanna Mayer

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2004, 01:53:20 PM »
Bob,
You really put your finger on it! "N & A listened to Rasputin when he appeared to agree with them!" Brilliant insite! Most  people usually only want to hear what they already believe ( I certainly have discovered that - to my great frustration and chagrin !)
I thought that I read of a few comments Rasputin made about peace that were "politically incorrect" at  the time, so noone seems to have too moved by those statements.
Considering the vast gulf between  N&A 's perspective on Rasputin and the rest of polite society's notions of the situation, no wonder that Alexandra's need for faith so alienated her from the subjects.

Joanna Mayer

Janet Whitcomb

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2004, 05:42:16 PM »
But remember too that this was a time of far greater privacy than now, and Alexandra felt that while they did owe their subjects much of their time, energy, consideration, and devotion, they did not owe their subjects windows into their own private lives.  She considered her association with Father Gregory to be very much a private association and felt people who were discussing Rasputin and asking questions about him were rude and intrusive--much as we would resent someone criticizing our choice of a religious or medical consultant.

I'm sure that if Alexandra had known what it meant, she would have made frequent use of the "MYOB" acronym!
:-*

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2004, 05:45:59 PM »
Excellent points, Janet!

Bob

Silja

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2004, 03:00:35 PM »
Quite agree with Bob as regards Alix's relationship/dependency with Rasputin. Fuhrman has touched on this in his notes on the correspondence.

wintermead

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2004, 01:41:43 PM »
   yes it seems pretty clear to me that alix somehow saw rasputin as in touch with god...naturally with her temperment she would be bound to be influenced by him.

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2004, 08:00:04 AM »
It's a huge mistake, in my opinion, to read the correspondence between AF and N during WWI-in reference to Rasputin-at face value.  Rasputin crops up over and over again-and thus the idea of his influence.  But when you start to look at actual ministerial appointments, the list grows small when we're talking about either his direct influence or even peripheral influence.  The single best analysis of this has been Martin Kilcoyne's "The Political Influence of Rasputin."  He aptly shows that it was largely Alix who was in control of Rasputin, not the other way round.  While this may be a somewhat controversial take, having studied it I'm sure it's the correct explanation.  Rasputin was crafty enough to recognize what Alexandra wanted to hear, and he often echoed these views back to her-allowing her to then approach Nicholas with them.  In the letters she often makes proposals, suggestions, even demands of Nicholas in relation to political questions.  Most often, Rasputin's name is not mentioned at all in connection with these, or when it is, it comes much later in the discussion-after the Empress had presented her own ideas.  Bringing Rasputin into the mix-either having his opinion of a candidate or his impressions-allowed her to bolster her arguments to Nicholas.  It endowed what Alix felt with religious conviction, and the certainty of correctness.  By couching her arguments to Nicholas in these terms, she presented them as not merely her own, but also approved by God in the person of "Our Friend."  That raised the stakes, taking the issue out of the political arena and elevating it to a question of faith, where Nicholas-faced with his wife's certainty and her "evidence" of God's support for her position-had to either refute it (which he did do-he refused several times to go along with AF's and "Rasputin's" ideas about this or that minister) or agree.  And in agreeing, N was in a sense absolved of responsibility, since it was "God's will."  Blaming Alix for being under the influence of Rasputin is too simplistic a reading of a complex situation involving a multitude of characters.

Greg King

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2004, 11:13:22 PM »
Hm, interesting. I never even thought about that aspect of it before. I wonder if she ever even asked for any intercessions or saved it all for Alexei? He was her precious Baby and perhaps she saw her illnesses as proper punishment for having inflicted the horrible disease on her son and heir? Maybe she thought she was unworthy of divine intervention and was prepared to accept God's will, whereas Alexei was an innocent who was suffering mightily for no reason.
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DaneRomanov

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #13 on: November 10, 2004, 05:37:20 PM »
Has Anyone heard te song "Ra Ra Rasputin" one of the lines is " Ra Ra Rasputin Lover of the Russian Queen" first im kinda annoyed they call the Tsarina a Queen >:( but i guess they had to rhyme lol, but it got me thinking if Aleksandra and Rasputin were lovers? i personally dont think so, i think its clear Aleksandra loved Nicholas so much, i think he was there to heal Alexsey ad thats it, what do you think, were they lovers???
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Elisabeth

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Re: Alexandra and Rasputin
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2004, 05:41:29 PM »
Don't worry, no serious historians believe that Rasputin and Alexandra were ever lovers! The rumor started in prerevolutionary Russia as a form of political character assassination. It's completely unfounded.

"Ra, Ra, Rasputin" was a famous (well, famous in Russia) song by the pop group Boney M. back in the 1970s. It's mentioned in a lot of books about Russia written during this time.