Essay by Anonymous UserHigh School, 10th gradeA+, February 1996

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The way a person lives his life and his religious beliefs can greatly affect history and the well being of a nation. A life of stealing and lying can kill you and destroy a nation, while leading a Godly life will keep you and everyone around you protected. Rasputin, in both his distorted religious beliefs and lifestyle, not only got himself killed, but changed the history of Russia and the world forever.

Rasputin was born Grigory Yefimovich Novykh in 1872, to a Siberian family, in the town of Pokrovskoye. Even though Grigory attended school, he remained illiterate throughout his whole life. His licentious reputation also earned him the nickname Rasputin, which is Russian for "debauched one." At the age of 18, he apparently underwent a religious conversion and eventually went to a monastery in Verkhoture where he was taught the beliefs of the Khlysty sect. Rasputin perverted these beliefs into the doctrine that one is nearest to God when feeling "holy passionlessness" and that you reached this state after sexual exhaustion that comes after prolonged debauchery.

Rasputin did not become a monk. Instead he returned home and married Proskovia Fyodorovna, who bore him four children. Marriage did not satisfy him, so he left home and wandered to Mount Athos, Greece, and Jerusalem living off peasant donations as a self-proclaimed holy man with the ability to heal the sick and predict the future.

Rasputin's travels took him to St. Petersburg where he was welcomed with open arms. The court circles at that time were entertaining themselves with mysticism and the occult. So Rasputin's alleged extraordinary healing power was warmly accepted. In 1905 Rasputin was introduced to the royal family, and in 1908 was called to the palace by Nicholas II and Alexandra during one of their...