Rasputin is one of the handful of historical figures who seemingly possessed a superhuman life force. He is famous for having been particularly difficult to kill, and his unusual gifts as a mystic and healer are often cited as the reason why he came close to achieving immortality.
He was not an educated man but he underwent a religious transformation during a three month stay in a monastery at the age of 18, and although he married and had children, he began a life as a wandering holy man. He was notorious for having a magnetic effect on women. Boney M’s classic song has made him go down in history as a sleaze ball of gargantuan proportions, given to drunkenness and orgies, the lover of the Russian queen, a goatish conman with an enormous wart on his penis that made women pass out cold during orgasm. Others claim he was a victim of anti-tsarist propaganda spread by the communists, and that he was genuinely saintly and a mystic with phenomenal powers. Many Russians think he should be canonised.
He survived the first attempt on his life in 1914 when a woman attacked him with a knife crying, “I have killed the antichrist”, causing his entrails to spill out. She was imprisoned and diagnosed as insane, but following surgery he survived. His healing powers came to the attention of the tsars, and unlike any of the medical men who had tried to treat the young prince Alexei‘s hemophilia, Rasputin was able to help the boy.
Felix Yusupov, a Russian prince and friend of the Romanov tsars, wrote a book from exile in Paris in the 1920s in which he described the events of the 29th December 1916. Exasperated at Rasputin’s influence over the emperor and his wife, a plot was hatched by courtiers to assassinate Rasputin. In the book Felix Yusupov claims Rasputin was invited to his palace on the pretext of healing his wife Irina. He was instructed to wait in a lounge, where pastries and wine laced with cyanide awaited him. Rasputin seemed to hesitate before eating them, but although the cyanide was enough to kill five men, his only reaction on swallowing them was salivation and burping. Rasputin asked Yusupov to play the guitar and sing. For two hours this “nightmare” continued. When Yusupov checked in with his co-conspirators he was pale with despair, saying that Rasputin had eaten and drunk the poisoned food and nothing had happened. Yusupov records that when the cyanide failed to kill Rasputin, he decided to end it and shoot him in the back while Rasputin was admiring a decorative cross. At first Rasputin fell to the floor, but when Yusupov returned Rasputin revived, grabbed him by the neck and fled into the snow. Yusupov shot him again, missed, and bit himself in the wrist to make himself concentrate, then shot Rasputin again in the head. He then beat him repeatedly with a dumbbell, and Yusupov and his co-conspirators tied him up with rope and dumped the body in the river. At some point they also castrated him. When the body was found floating downstream, his hands were in a raised position, causing speculation he was still alive under the ice and was trying to get the rope off his hands.
Modern-day mystics ask:
Could Rasputin, as a mystic, have been told the secrets of tantra at the monastery, channelling the energy of his many lovers to build an extremely powerful life force (see Tantra) ?
Could Rasputin have exercised some control over his reality, as manifest in his healing powers? In the movie The Matrix, when Neo realises his mind and his thoughts are creating the world around him, the bullets have no power to kill him.
Rasputin was buried in secret to avoid desecration, but some have claimed Rasputin was the legendary Count of St Germain, the immortal who appears periodically at times of crisis in earth’s history.
The sceptics claim :
1. Yusupov deliberately missed because the transvestite prince was in love with the monk.
2. The autopsy showed no cyanide in the body, only alcohol. Rasputin did not touch the poisoned food and drink.
3. Historians have suggested Yusupov’s version is grossly exaggerated or falsified.
4. Rasputin was buried in Imperial Park, but dug up by revolutionaries in 1917 and burnt in a forest.
Whatever the truth, Rasputin has gone down in history as a “mad monk” who was almost indestructible. Before he died, if indeed he did die, he was poisoned, shot four times, clubbed, castrated, exposed to freezing conditions and drowned. On his last day on earth he was 47. It is interesting to speculate how long he would have lived if he had not made so many enemies.
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