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Life Of Pi: Putting It In The Same Boat Essay

  • Submitted by: ericdahl
  • on March 24, 2012
  • Category: English
  • Length: 1,162 words

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Below is an essay on "Life Of Pi: Putting It In The Same Boat" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

In the novel Life of Pi, Yann Martel uses analogies and characterizations to suggest that regardless of whether God truly exists, one can benefit from having faith. Pi's extensive religious and zoological background will be highlighted with hopes to have a more clear understanding of the relationship between instinct and beliefs. One can argue that the use of sublimation and other belief systems are valuable in getting through seemingly impossible times. In the face of adversity, Pi is forced to balance his beliefs down to their most basic level to help ensure survival. Complimentary and contrasting ideas will be explored and developed in coherence with Pi, to gain a better insight on human epistemology.

Pi's double-major in religious studies and zoology give him a well-rounded insight of faith and science.   Throughout the book, important parallels between zoology, religion, and survival can be drawn. Early on, Pi explains how misinformed people believe that wild animals are much happier because they are seemingly “free”. In reality, he continues, these animals lead a life of compulsion and necessity in an unforgiving food-chain (Martel, 19). Pi then goes on to explain how zoos give animals a habitat free of predators, a habitat with an abundance of food, their own territory, a home (20). He questions why animals, such reactionary and conservative creatures, would want to wander from place to place, a stranger to all, when even the most bold and adventurous animals, humans, fear territorial change (20). This idea of territorial protectiveness suggests that human instinct, at the root, is the same, or very similar, to all other mammals. The boundaries and containment of zoos can also be analogized with religion; although religion is often said to restrict human freedom, Pi believes it in fact unveils human's spiritual essentials which in actuality grants a more significant kind of freedom. The main differentiation between Pi and the animals on the lifeboat is...

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