3622. You can see from the forgoing that I am the Tsar of the Russians, by the express will of the Almighty, because either He put me here on my throne, or God forbid, there is no God, and this entire thousand years of elaborately decorated architecture, grand hallways with gilded mirrors, ceremonies with ermine capes studded with diamonds and rubies, is just a big pathetic and very expensive farce.
3623. Katuzov had been listening thoughtfully and quietly through the Tsar’s sermon, for a sermon is what you might say it was. It was a meditation on the will of the Lord, a theological inquiry into how God makes his will known on the earth. Everyone knows that God works in mysterious ways, and the Tsar was theorizing on just what those mysterious ways might consist of.
3624. Katuzov was paying careful attention to what was being said, and as often happens in a theological discussion of any sort, he felt joyous agreement with what the Tsar was saying and at the same time other ideas came creeping into his head like little bugs crawling around on some fruit, and these ideas did not completely agree with the thesis of the Monarch.
3425. Since he knew that Tsar Nicholas valued the independent thought of his ministers he ventured to propose a small theological thought of his own saying. “I understand that God must obviously take special care of his royal children, but the question that troubles me is, since he created the poor ignorant and benighted surf’s child with just as much care and attention to detail, wouldn’t he be just as perturbed and upset by its death as the death of any royal child.”