Matthew Temlett Grade 11 Life of Pi Essay
A difficult path to a greater understanding of the universe and the world around us. A spiritual journey thrust upon a young and fragile child. In the novel Life of Pi we watch a fledgling boy as his life is taken from simple everyday corporeal voyage of living into a dismal and completely different state of affairs than he has ever experienced as he is thrown into the profound blue sea aboard a lonesome lifeboat. His family missing and everything he has ever know gone he finds his only company coming from a zebra with a broken leg, a quirky orangutan, a vicious hyena and a mysterious yet influential Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. If we consider to what extent this novel is as a bildungsroman, we find that Life of Pi deals with the growth and change of Pi’s entity, spiritually and mentally. “The presence of God is the finest of rewards.” As a child, he reads widely and embraces many religions and their rich narratives that provide meaning and dimension to life. Pi’s belief in God inspires him as a child and helps sustain him while at sea, his lifeboat representing his faith. In Pondicherry, his atheistic biology teacher challenges his Hindu faith in God, making him realize the optimistic power of belief, the need to overcome the otherwise austerity of the universe. As Pi’s forlorn journey progresses we watch as he grows from this young boy into a curious teenager, however Pi’s true spiritual journey does not truly begin until he finds himself having to gradually mature and take care of himself as well as his alter allegory ego Richard Parker, a turning point where he develops independence. “Solitude began. I turned to God.” He never loses faith with God even as we see him take on a more animalistic persona as his days on the lifeboat escalate. His vegetarian lifestyle is washed down the drain as he has to learn to adapt and learn to survive. Upon arriving at the Algae Island Pi finds it to be his...
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