The Life of Pi

1 January 2017

How can converting to another religion affect your community?  In the book Life of Pi, Yann Martel describes Piscine as an outstanding Indian boy that practices many religions. A child should have the same rights to choose their religion, like an adult, regardless of the religion of their parents. Religion is based because of Pi’s choices in life he has discovered three religions he wants to follow. In one occasion Pi even mentions how people loose God throughout their life, but that wasn’t his case.

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He refers to how he has always been interested in God and religion and how he has explored different religions. Throughout the book, Pi explores three different religions Hindu, Christianity, and Islam. He was born into a Hindu family and has been a part of the faith ever since. His faithfulness to Hinduism did not change his curiosity towards exploring other religions. Pi shows a great deal of independence to learn as much as he can. This independence is present when Pi is on the boat and has to fend for himself. His enthusiasm towards religion doesn’t change while he is on the boat.

By reciting his daily prayers, religion gives Pi a sense of hope that will help him to survive. Different perspectives of Hinduism can change the way we face religion. There are many times that we feel trapped, and don’t know how to confront problems within religion. “Religion faces the same problem; certain illusions about freedom plague them both” (p19). Many religions tried to change how a person sees life or how they act, meanwhile Hinduism doesn’t. While Hindus in each of these societies have altered their religion to suit the needs of their cultures all Hindus share a core of rich poetic, and complex traditions”(Wangu p14).

Even though many were born and raised there don’t show that all are Hinduism. “Unlike Buddhism Confucianism Taoism, Christianity, Islam, or most of other active world religions, Hinduism was not found by one individual” (p14). You can admire many Gods, unlike other religions. Pie actually did this in a certain point of his journey! Hinduism is considered one of the oldest religions in existence; many other religions are not suitable to be counted as a “stable religion. ” Life can change from one moment to another and surprises you in every aspect.

When you see your life gone in a second, you think about your journey. “From its beginning, Hinduism has been a polytheistic religion, meaning that its followers believe in many gods” (Wangu p16). Pi made his own temple in his house adoring many Gods, unlike Christianity! The name Hindu came into use when the Persians; in their attempt to label all non-Muslim people living beyond the Sindhu river, mispronounces the words Sindhu. We can assume that this religion come from all those years, we assure that it’s a truthful religion. Pi felt safe only in the zoo, he saw the animals as his second family.

This made him miss everything he had there, because he grew up with all the animals in there. Another reason why Pi’s life was changing was because his peers kept making fun of his name. For example, “He increased his arm; pointed at me and shouted, “ It’s Pissing Patel” (p20). Along with that, when you become ill, you believe that God is not helping you at all. Mr. Kumar didn’t believe in God because he believes that he didn’t save his life. “Religion will save us,” Pi said. “Since when I couldn’t remember, religion had been very close to my heart” (p 27).

In a large population we see God and religion as a shadow in our life. Pi says, “Darkness? I was puzzled. I thought, Darkness is the last thing that religion is. Religion is light” (p 27). If we see deep in religion, most of us say that we don’t want God in our lives because of something that happen. Other than that when we really need him, we pray, and seems like he don’t listen. I think that if we really pray with devotion and be within God in the troubled and happy times everything would be different. Mr. Kumar explains, “When I was your age, I lived in bed, racked with polio” (p28).

Many of us can understand that when something like this happens, we all lose faith in God. His faith was gone after praying to God so many things about his illness. “I asked myself every day, ‘where is God? Who saved me- it was medicine” (p28). You can’t neglect God before other things. God was there for you since you were born and it’s not fair for us to put him as the last person we think of. “Hindus recognize three possible paths to moksha or salvation” (Hindus Beliefs p1). Those outrages times that we lose faith or belief in our religion, all we want to do is be in different ones.

Pi had three religions that he had “converted” into. “The priest broke it when he said, with pride in his voice, ‘Piscine is a good Christian boy’ I hope to see him join our choir soon” (p66). We all lie in a point in our life; we just have to make sure that our lies are beneficial. There is only one God that we can count on, the one and only! Converting from one religion to another can be hard for itself, family, and the community. “You must be mistaken. He is a good Muslim boy” (p66). Pi itself was in a big conflict with the priests coming to his parents and confronting him in front of them.

Muslims beliefs follow the Five Pillars of Islam, which they regard as the most important practice of their religion. Once again one more time, the pandit said, “You’re both wrong. He is a good Hindu boy” (p66). One way that Pi could repent from his sin, like changing his religion, is by karma; yoga. We never know when we can die, and our only hope is religion. It’s like if we have a watch and as it stops so do we, and we die. Us, as humans have to fix what’s not properly done by nature and fast or else a destruction can happen. Every one is going to be judged and until that day comes we have to do our best. One day we will take hold of the means of productions and there will be justice on Earth” (p28).

Religion is what we believe in and yes it can mean many things. “No definition allows for identification of “faith” with “religion” (p1). Religion has been defined as a system of beliefs base on humanity’s attempt to explain phenomena. Many people can tell us what religion is, but do many of us know? I believe the answer is no, we can say stories and myths about it, but nobody can really assure us. That’s many of us have to study to go in deep in religion, and for nobody to tell us what’s wrong and right about religion.

Loosing someone special is like loosing everything in your life. Piscine lost his parents and his brother, his only family. Pi explains, “To lose a brother is to lose someone with whom you can share the experience of growing old” (p127). Pi went through a rough time, after he was in the boat by himself he missed his mom. “To lose your mother well, that is like the sun above you” (p127). The human minds has a mentality to survive and support everything. “I survived 227 days. That’s how long my trial lasted, over seven months” (p189).

For example in my real life I lost my father, and yes it hurts me because he was the that created me. Many years has passed since he passed away, my whole life to be exact. I understand what Pi went through when he lost his mother, is pain that nobody can take away from you. Yet many people think it’s easy to just let it go, but most haven’t lost a special someone! My family and I lost hope when he passed away, because my mom had to take care three of us. Pi was a child when he lost his family and that’s something you keep for the rest of your life. While trying to fight for survival, we take things to deep.

We should not cling! A plague upon fundamentalist and literalists” (p70). Pi remains unattached to any one interpretation of God. He believes in religion, but he doesn’t guard specific jealously. He believes to be in a major misstep by some believers. “There are always those who take it upon themselves to defend God, as if ultimate reality, if it was something weak and helpless” (p15). Even if the days passed, Pi kept practicing his religious faith at sea. “I practiced religious rituals that I adapted to the circumstances solitary Masses without priest or Communion Host” (90).

The soul calls to God, and God calls to the soul. “Braham Saguna is Braham made man; fest to our limited senses, Braham expressed not only in gods but in humans, for everything has a trace of the divire in it” (Solomon p1). Pi’s education includes both science and religion, he comes to love both these disciplines. “I’ll be honest about it, it is not atheist who get stuck in my craw, but agnostics” (p163). One day we will take hold of the means of productions and there will be justice on Earth. All of us probably don’t even think about changing our religion or to have any other thought of God.

There are many perspectives about life, religion, and love. Accidents can happen, or anything can happen for us to just change what our parents have thought us, as better people. We don’t take hold of our selves because we are humans and we can’t control what we think! Religion shouldn’t be converted to darkness, it should be something that you are proud of. For example Pi, he had three religions to choose from, the teens from now a days don’t even think about going to church or a temple. Now a days going to parties or reunion with friends is the “new” thing. Pi charms the socks off everyone with this story.

Pi also uses his friends mishearing to lay out one of his essential beliefs. All the three beliefs he practiced are really the same except for small differences in the practice of their faith. Hindus have a great capacity for love. Muslims see god in everything, and Christians are quiet devout. By knowing that Hindus have a lot of love for God, you know that Pi had to try some other religions. Last but not least, religion is an organization or system of human thought that practicing to give a meaning to a practitioner’s life by reference the higher power, or ultimate truth, usually includes a set of narratives, symbols or beliefs.

In the story “life of Pi”, the main character Pi, is practicing three religions at the same time: Hinduism, Islam, and Christianity. They are three totally different kinds of religions. But they helped Pi; they gave Pi the faith, the power to survive, in those deadly situations. However, religions does not bring blessing, also brings chaos and crisis. Religion can brainwash people, and turns them into extremists. For instants, those terrorists, what makes them so daredevil, willing to do anything for their organization?

It’s their religion, their “true God”. And also, religion can be a tool for those dominators to dominate people. Some rules in a religion would be like: be peaceful, God does not want people to fight, or some kind of stuff. Those rules weaken people, reduces the power of resisting of people. Some time, dominators could win a war, and kill people without their resistance. In conclusion, religions are not all that good for people, but you can still choose any religion you want.

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