Does Life of Pi Have a Happy Ending? – Research Paper – Asad Abbas
Does Life of Pi Have a Happy Ending?
Does Life of Pi have a Happy Ending?
Throughout history, the notion of a “happy ending” has been used by numerous authors and writers. More than likely, these stories consist of a protagonist that overcomes their difficult circumstances. Many readers prefer these stories because they encourage the idea that all individuals have control over their lives. In Life of Pi by Yann Martel, Pi lives through one of the most harsh scenarios imaginable. He survives on a lifeboat for 227 days with a massive Bengal tiger. Once saved in Mexico, he quickly goes on live a new life in Canada. Although he had trouble adjusting to the lifestyle, Pi lives a much better life which ultimately provides the reader with a happy ending. Life of Pi is a novel with a happy ending because Pi continues to practice his faith even after living as a castaway, learns a variety of essential skills for survival and goes on to live a great life in Canada.
After living his life as a castaway, Pi continues to keep his trust in God. This is because it was extremely difficult to survive in the circumstances Pi was in. The fact that Pi lived through it all showed him that God was always by his side. God was the one who provided Pi with the ability to survive. Most individuals would struggle mentally and likely lose hope. They would ask why they were placed in such a tough situation and would turn away from God. Instead, Pi does the exact opposite and remains faithful. During times where Pi felt great anger and desolation, he would aid himself by remembering that God was with him. Pi goes on to explain “I would touch the turban I had made with the remnants of my shirt and I would say aloud, ‘THIS IS GOD’S HAT!’ I would pat my pants and saw aloud, ‘THIS IS GOD’S ATTIRE!’ I would point to Richard Parker and say aloud ‘THIS IS GOD’S CAT!’” (Martel, 209). This shows the amount of faith Pi entrusts in God. Even when Pi was hunting his first fish, he pledged “All sentient life is sacred. I never forget to include this fish in my prayers.” (Martel 183). Throughout his days on the boat, Pi stayed loyal to God. It was the Lord who gave him the will to never lose hope and provided the additional push to live. Thus, God remained a significant part of Pi’s life which exhibits a content ending to Pi’s story.
Surviving on a lifeboat for 227 days is already an extremely difficult task for the majority of individuals. On top of this, Pi was stuck with a 450 pound tiger who was looking to be fed. During Pi’s childhood, his father commanded for goat to be placed in front of a tiger. He wanted to show Pi and Ravi what tigers are capable of. In a matter of seconds, the tiger killed the goat which demonstrated the danger of tigers. These animals do not hesitate to eat other animals, including humans. The fact that Richard Parker did not kill Pi showed Pi that God was with him. God did not want Pi to die because of Richard Parker. Instead, Pi learned to train Richard Parker with the use of his whistle and the tide waves. During the training, Richard Parker could have attacked at anytime. Fortunately, he did not do anything which added onto Pi’s trust in God. A piece of the training program Pi was practicing read “But you must be careful. You want to provoke your animal, but only so much. You don’t want it to attack you outright. If it does, God be with you.” (Martel 203). With a leap of faith, Pi continuously trained Richard Parker and ultimately tamed the tiger. According to Pi’s rationale, he was not attacked because God was there to protect him.
Throughout the novel, the author takes several pauses from the story to discuss Pi’s lifestyle in Canada. This provides the reader with a better understanding of who Pi was and how he lived after his castaway experience. As a result of studying Pi’s house, the author exclaims that “[Pi’s] house is a temple” (Martel 45). Pi has a picture of Ganesha in the entrance hall. His living room contains a small image of the Virgin Mary alongside a photo of the Kaaba in Mecca. Next to his bed, he had a bible on his nightstand. Alongside these, his house is filled with several other religious artifacts. This shows that Pi has continued to practice his faith. He never gave up on God and was able to follow all three religions. For Pi, this is a happily ever after scenario as he stays loyal to all three faiths. If Pi did not have the religious artifacts around his house, it would portray that his faith changed somewhere along the way. Thus, the artifacts show that everything worked out fine and that his beliefs never diminished.
Apart from the continuation of religious practices, Life of Pi had a happy ending because Pi learned many key skills necessary for survival. One of the most important skills was learning how to catch and kill animals. Although Pi was a vegetarian, he was forced to do what was required.
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(2016, 06). Does Life of Pi Have a Happy Ending?. EssaysForStudent.com. Retrieved 06, 2016, from