The Beliefs Of Religion In Life Of Pi By Yann Martel

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Religion often enriches people’s lives and impacts their attitudes towards the world. Everyone in the world may believe in gods, and whether they believe or not, miracles do happen. In the book “Life of Pi” by Yann Martel, multiple religions inspire the protagonist Pi as a child and ultimately save his life as a castaway after a shipwreck in the Pacific Ocean. As Pi is introduced to Hinduism, Christianity, and Islamic in his early childhood, his mind becomes preoccupied with love, compassion, and gratitude. The elements of love, compassion, and gratitude support this spiritual young man to endure and triumph over the chaos left by the aftermath of the shipwreck. Overall, religion plays a significant role in Pi’s devastating journey by providing…show more content…
Religious beliefs offer hope to Pi. In the story, Pi links the details of his life as a castaway to his gods. For example, at the time he sees his beloved orangutan, Orange Juice, advancing towards the lifeboat on a pile of bananas, which he regards the scene as the “Virgin Mary”(p123) coming in a “…halo of light.”(p123). Pi is relieved when he connects the scene with Orang Juice, who is a family member in Pi’s mind, to his own Christian belief, which produces a stronger desire to live through the upcoming desperation. Furthermore, Pi relates the orange colour, the Hindu colour of “survival”(p153), to the inside of the lifeboat, the tarpaulin, lifejacket, lifebuoy and other emergency items to his Hindu beliefs in order to survive. Pi also “evaluates”(p231) himself when hopelessness approaches, which he points randomly at items on the lifeboat and establish them as god’s possession. For example, he will “point at the sky”(p232) and shout, “ THIS IS GOD’S EAR!” (p232) in order to remind himself that “ The blackness would stir and eventually go away…”(p232) and “…god would remain, a shining point of light in his heart.” (p232) “Blackness”(p232) is referred to as despair as “a shining point” stands for hope and faith. Additionally,…show more content…
As a Hindu, Pi is a vegetarian; therefore, dismembering the bodies of sea creatures is proved to be a challenge and a fear for him. However, Pi faces an even greater fear, starvation. The first time he murders a fish on the lifeboat, guilt runs over him; nevertheless, he dismisses the guilt through appreciation to Lord Vishnu, the supreme god of Hinduism, by shouting,“ Once you saved the world by taking the form of a fish,” (p204) and “ …you have saved me by taking the form of a fish.”(p204/205) It is Pi’s religious beliefs that give him the inner strength to face the difficulties during his voyage. At the time his life is threatened by the beasts on the lifeboat and in the sea, he prays to all his gods from Hinduism, Christianity, and Islam by saying, “ Jesus, Mary, Muhammad and Vishnu!” (p166) or just simply,“God preserve me!”(p155). After receiving mental relief from the gods, Pi is able to take actions to counteract the danger, which he develops plans to establish his superiority over Richard Parker. For example, he trains Richard Parker like a circus animal by blowing his whistle as loudly as he can. He also makes strong eye contacts with Richard Parker during the tense moments. Generally, Religion helps Pi to abandon his vegetarian status and to gain superiority over Richard Parker during his

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