Free Study Guide for Life of Pi by Yann Martel Book Summary|
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Here again is the syncretic theme. For Pi, the point of religion is to have faith and demonstrate love for God, not to cubbyhole one’s faith into a particular doctrine. He defends this eloquently, as quoted above.
Pi approaches his father and asks to be baptized (as a Christian) and requests a prayer rug (for Islamic prayer). Father is confused and tries to explain to Pi that the different religions have nothing in common. Pi refutes this, listing several prophets and, of course, the one God shared by Christians and Muslims. Father points out to Pi that the family is Indian, implying that Pi should be Hindu. Pi refutes this as well explaining that Christians and Muslims have been in India hundreds of years. Exasperated, Father tells Pi to go ask Mother. Mother then tells Pi to go ask Father. Rather than pursue the issue further, Mother tries to change the subject by suggesting great books for Pi to read. Pi is not to be deterred and makes his point analogizing his multiple religions with Mamaji’s multiple passports. Mother, too, becomes exasperated.
Confident, Pi now goes beyond reasoning with his heart, i.e. “I just want to love God,” to arguing with doctrine and facts. Indeed, the more one studies the various religions, the more one sees they have in common making it easy to accept, as Mahatma Gandhi said, that all religions are true. His parents, not being religious do not know what to make of Pi’s fervor.
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Cassie, Donna L.. "TheBestNotes on Life of Pi".
. 09 May 2017