Going to the Solovetsky Islands, I certainly wanted to see one of the most famous Russian monasteries and the harsh but beautiful nature of the Russian north. On the other hand, I realized that the terrible history of Stalin's labor camps and prisons (Gulag) changed the spirit of this place. For me this was one of the biggest contradictions of the Solovetsky Islands. But most importantly, I wanted to see and understand how the inhabitants of the islands survive in such difficult conditions of the Russian north, in a place that has concentrated both bright and darkest pages of my country's history. Indeed, the dark side of history completely degrades Solovki as one of the spiritual centers of Orthodoxy. It was hard to understand how people can unite all these historical contradictions in their minds and find the meaning of life in this place. Simplicity and openness, neighboring with a moral callousness and a kind of animal desire to survive, is the reality that is difficult to accept.