Essay On Science And Religion In Life Of Pi

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“Science without Religion is lame, religion without science is blind” (Einstein). In other words, science and religion are not complete without each other. In Yann Martel’s novel Life of Pi, Piscine Patel is a young boy who loses his family in a storm at sea and is left stranded in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with a Bengal tiger. Piscine Patel is a very religious boy who practices Christianity, Islam and Hinduism while studying science. At first glance, this may seem peculiar to most because they are two contradicting subjects. However, Pi shows the readers that in both science and religion, humans are simply just searching for the answers to life, and trying to make sense of their existence. According to Pi, science can give the answers to most questions and, then religion must complete the story. From the beginning of the novel, Pi’s love for God and his scientific knowledge is explicit which influences the readers of his ability to show the interdependence between them. Likewise, through Piscine’s knowledge of the world, and his belief and hope in God, he is able to survive many days in the lifeboat unlike many other castaways. In Life of Pi it is evident that science and religion can coexist in society to bring forth an inter-reliant understanding of the world around us.

Piscine’s knowledge of science and his belief in many religions helps him to maintain hope throughout his journey at sea. From the beginning of the novel, Pi’s knowledge of the behaviors and instincts of animals is evident. By applying this knowledge, Pi is able to survive over 200 days at sea with a Bengal tiger. “I descended to a level of savagery I never imagined possible” (Martel 249). Through Pi’s familiarity of Richard Parker he knew that at Pondich...

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...ion because both topics are simply trying to find the answers of life. In addition, Pi’s faith gave him hope, an advantage over many other castaways, without hope, and his scientific knowledge Pi wouldn’t have survived as long as he did out at sea. Furthermore, the meeting between Pi’s two role models as a child, is essential to the fact that both science and religion can be embraced by the same person. Pi’s understanding and love for God, combined with his knowledge of science, proves the impossible, that not only can one survive abandoned at sea against the greatest odds, but can find equal ground between both science and religion. Having faith is the grounds for both the understanding and acceptance of science and religion allowing them to coexist harmoniously in Life of Pi.

Works Cited

Martel, Yann. Life of Pi: A Novel. New York: Harcourt, 2001. Print.

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