Life of Pi: A Journey of Choosing Faith

"Life of Pi" is one of those inspirational and emotive piece of work. Along with the story; the staggering visualization of the sea, cinematography that just makes every second worth to see, the beautiful sounds that immerse the ocean. It really is a must-watch movie of 2012.

"Religions has many rooms"
Piscine Molitor Patel, is an Indian boy raised in a zoo as a Hindu. His early childhood was known for being called as 'pissing', which sounds like his name. Piscine stunned everybody by writing the correct long digits of Pi, π. in his school. He had a new identity since then-- he is Pi.

Although Pi excelled in school, he was never satisfied with knowledge he had received-- he always looked for more, yet he was split between his father, a highly-disciplined modern Indian businessman who rather believed something from the Western world, meanwhile his caring botanist-mother, choosed to follow the Hindu custom and tradition. He eventually knew that there are many interpretations of God, Universe and Fate.

Tales of Hindu gods and goddesses accompanied little Pi to sleep. One of the tales was the little Khrisna's mother witnessing the whole universe inside Khrisna's mouth. As Pi became older, a priest in a church told Pi that people can understand, love and follow Jesus because He is human, a son, who sacrificed himself for the love of other human. He started to pray as a Catholic before supper. Not so long after he learned about Jesus, he enjoyed the serenity when shalat after he heard the prayers from a mosque.

His father, Santosh, was a different man that young Pi. Santosh did not want his son to believe in so many things, because Santosh believed that believing in everything is the same as not believing in nothing. He especially prohibited or condemned unconventional ideas, for instance, a tiger that is nice to human (the general idea is that it's difficult for a tiger to be so). He wanted his son to face a harsh reality once, instead of viewing it from other perspectives.

"In the end, the whole life is becomes an act of letting go..."
Pi lost his family during their sail to search for better future in Canada. He went out to the dock to see the storm but under him was already water drowning his family. "Tsimtsum" cargo ship wrecked in the middle of a night full of thunder and gigantic waves, near Mariana trench. Pi survived by jumping onto a lifeboat, somehow he, together with some animals from the zoo brought to the cargo, was fated to leave the ship. A zebra and a hyena, survived the walls of waves that shook their seasickness away with horror together with Pi. Pi could not do anything else aside from seeing the ship approaching the darkness. Unknowingly, an orangutan and a Bengal tiger became the fourth and the fifth passenger on the helpless lifeboat, joining Pi's Ark mourning the loss and the tragedy. Pi was stuck in between the dark clouds and the sea depth.

I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry"
After all, it was only Pi, a Bengal tiger, named Richard Parker, and few supply that were left after the carnivores ate the herbivores. He just lost his family and almost died a couple of times. Above all, he was scared to look at the horizon. To make things worse, Richard Parker was still a hungry vicious tiger. Pi had to kill living things in one way or another to make them co-exist-- so Richard won't eventually eat Pi, and so Pi had 'reason' to live.

"It was a tooth..."
The lifeboat bumped into an uncharted island full of meerkats and eatable vegetation. They nourished themselves during the day. Later at night, he found out that the whole island became carnivorous when the tide came-- the algae released acid and dissolved living things. Pi and Richard Parker immediately left the island and continued the sea journey to fight for chances to live in better place. 

"Which story do you prefer?"
"The one with animals..."
"So it goes the same with God"
In the end, Pi survived the danger of the ocean when he reached a shore, where he was rescued by the locals, whom perhaps are Mexican. Only Pi seemed to be glad, meanwhile Richard Parker just walked away from him and disappeared in the mangrove forests. Heartbroken, Pi was still carried away from the lifeboat to the hospital.
Two Japanese insurance officer came to the hospital and interviewed Pi about sinking of Tsimtsum. Pi didn't recall the cause of the sinking, so he explained the whole thing-- about how he tried to survive, instead. The men didn't believe and asked Pi whether he can give more logical answer-- the story without the animals. The men found the other version of the story to be more dreadful. There were killings between human involved. When asked about which story was preferred, the men answered nothing-- which led to a report that summed Pi's story with the animals.

The conclusion to the story got me thinking that the story was perhaps about Pi's finding of his current religion. He was faced with many perspectives and he ended up choosing one particular belief.

If Pi didn't have a faith; something to protect, something to live by, he would not survive. 

"Mr. Patel's is an astounding story, courage and endurance unparalleled in the history of ship-wrecks. Very few castaways can claim to have survived so long, and none in the company of an adult Bengal tiger."