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Retrieved on Archived from the original on October 31, Retrieved November 7, Retrieved November 12, His parents were zealous Moslems—his father taught himself to read the Koran, and carried it around with him, often retelling stories from it to Erkhan. Nevertheless, he made the request of Erkhan's mother for her son's permission to be baptized.
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The man of God Stoyan became his spiritual instructor. Whether it was by the strength of his new faith or for the sake of his humility and enormous desire, we don't know; but in a miracle happened: Emmanuel's wife gave him a healthy son, who they baptized with the name Alexander. It was the birth of the child for whom had he long waited and suffered that inspired him to study in the theological seminary, and become even more convinced of the power of the Christian religion. Now Father Deacon is ready to begin the path to the priesthood—although his ordination into the deaconate was a greatly unexpected event for him.
Faith in Christianity
It took place at the personal decision of Metropolitan Kirill. Before this, Emmanuel served as a subdeacon and altar attendant. Now as a deacon he has the right to read certain prayers in church.
His first-born son Alexander is also learning to read: he says the "Our Father". The baptism of Erkhan is not without precedent in these parts. He is not the first Moslem who has decided to change his religion after getting to know Fr. Nikolina, also a Moslem, once found herself in an utterly hopeless situation and went in search of salvation from the priest. She received living space for her children, work for herself, support, friendship, and security for tomorrow. For all this goodness she wanted to convert to the Christian faith. Stoyan's wife Elena became her godmother.
Erkhan's biography is essentially a story with Christian virtue as the main theme, and not a clash of religions. Regardless of many people's skeptical relationship to their country's traditions and religion [Orthodox Christianity], there still are people in Bulgaria who convert out of personal conviction. That is their right. In this story, the important thing is the desire of some people to help others, regardless of religion. After all, Fr. Stoyan teaches that God creates people—it is not people who create God Just as the exquisite beauty of the ocean is revealed just beneath the drama unfolding on the lifeboat, the true meaning of the film lies gently beneath the surface of the story.
The story is so moving that even President Barack Obama, in a letter to the author, described it as "an elegant proof of God, and the power of storytelling". This story is a gedanken experiment for the worst case scenario, a modern day story of Job, all about how you can find spirituality and the meaning of life in the throes of all that is horrible and terrible in the world today. It is by surviving and making sense of all that goes wrong in the world, that uncovers the meaning of man.
Clearly, Pi preferred the better story, a massive extrapolation of positive thought, that leads him to make sense of things, that carries him to a new life with a loving wife and family.
The other story, where humans are reduced primal terror, could lead only to a brutally shattered life. In this story, you could see the entire story as an abandonment by God… but at the same time, it becomes evident that God was actually present at every moment.
And in the end, he realizes that Richard Parker is actually his savior. In the same way, God is actually all around us, and still, so many of us are unable to receive the manna of heaven. In Hindu culture, water symbolizes the 'ocean of life,' with all living creatures existing as one contiguous body. The sea torments Pi with waves, threatens him with sharks, and even robs him of his family. At the same time, the sea also gives him life. It rains flying fish upon him, it grows a magical garden of algae, and in the end, bestows the gift of wisdom.
The characters in The Life of Pi — like in any dream, since film is essentially collective dreaming — are all actually components of the self. All are essential for becoming who we are.
However, the most important component of self is the raft… which represents his faith. It is something that he has to construct by himself, in order to be effective. The through line — ie, the spine of this remarkable tale — is that it is his raft that never forsakes him. More than any other part of the the tale, it is the invisible force that finally brings him to safety and the force that transforms him into the individual he finally becomes.
Our challenges are what help to define us; what guides us to becoming more. What greater challenge can there be than trapped with a ferocious tiger? More so, if that tiger is your own fear , anxiety , depression , desolation, and despair. It is our faith that helps us cross the cruel and endless sea. This is a message for all entrepreneurs and innovators as well, never give up your faith — faith in yourself, faith in your vision, faith in a better world. In the final analysis, just as pi is a mathematical construct that can never be fully comprehended, The Life of Pi is essentially unfathomable… as is the battle between religion , science and spirituality.
I turned to god. I think your suggestion that the story suggests the existence of a god is fanciful. I think it does the opposite It is a story of survival and perseverance and the notion that god intervened in some way does not add anything to it Your comment illustrates the central point of the story.
Faith in God is a choice - you've obvioulsy choose the other story. Good luck with that. The former is intriguing, because it would trace the gradual healing of his brain to accept the tiger as part of himself.
James: Faith and Work | Bible Commentary | Theology of Work
An unlikely aspect is that he would so easily relate the true story on the hospital bed, but the disappearance of the tiger and days to work it out may indicate that his sanity had returned. I would think that only from that point on, he would begin to explore and embrace the religious meanings that are so discussed in the blogs. I agree.. The other more obvious themes in the story like the harsh and unforgiving nature of the world contrasted with beauty and calmness The way in which humans tend to romanticise relationships with animals was also interesting Of course the alternate story showed human behaviour to be very similar to brutal self interested animal behaviour under extreme conditions I am also fascinated by the religious themes I'm not sure about that I didn't see any evidence that his somewhat uncertain belief in a god saved him?
It certainly didn't help the others on the ship! As someone who is not religious at all, I think that relying on an imaginary god for protection is self deception which may have positive or negative outcomes either of which would ultimately be rationalised as being the will of the god. Because he survived he may have been inclined to attribute it to a god..
I didn't expect to learn a lesson from Life of Pi but I did. First of all, it is fictional and, therefore, not meant relevant as a psychological case study. Secondly, it helped me understand so much of what I see and experience at work, home, church, and with life in general. No one is exempt from the competition we call life. Many Christians deceptively compete with some restrictions. For those of us struggling to overcome our sinful nature, and striving to live a life worthy to be called a Christian, we have discovered another way to compete.
As a Christian, I have learned the power of waiting on the Lord. Over and over again, I have seen him work and move in a manner that was so much better than I could have ever thought to do myself. But seeing God work, always means taming my fleshly need to look out for my own best interests. So, what does this have to do with Life of Pi? In the story where Pi is in the boat with other people, we see what happens when he relies on his own instincts and judgment. It is the painful, disturbing and ever present human reality we prefer not to face. Pi had to tame his basic instinct the Tiger in order to fully trust in God.
The first story of survival with the Bengal Tiger is the story we prefer but it is also the story that is only possible through faith in God. Interesting to see this played out in a movie. I struggle to see what faith provides to assist in survival other than possibly a delusion of life after death ala the suicide bomber who is apparently happy to die in anticipation of virgins etc. To me 'faith' is pretending you know something that you do not know so in a genuine survival situation I would prefer to face reality head on and deal with it rather than pretend that it is something else.
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If one believes a god is involved somehow, giving up or fighting to survive might both be rationalised as gods will It is definitely a thought provking story. Yes, thought provoking - like all good art! I almost don't want to know what Yann Martel really was thinking no, that's a lie! But it's intriguing how everyone brings a different aspect of interpretation based on their own experience, philosophy, and interest. So, back to the plot, the part I struggle most with is that fanciful island - it threw me when I read the book too, where did this thing come from? If you pull the mental-coping thread of explanation, I can see it symbolizing Pi's realization that he's got to deal with this fantasy that his mind's created.
Did he really find a small island, and decide to leave? Who knows. Metaphorically though, during the day, it works for him to be separate from the tiger, but during the night his brain is realizing that it's not healthy or sustainable. So he goes back and finishes taming Richard Parker i. Or was Mr.