Life Of Pi And The Five People You Meet In Heaven

1931 words - 8 pages

Relationships are a fundamental part of life. By connecting to other living beings in different situations, people are able to put their lives into perspective. The novels The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom and Life of Pi by Yann Martel both highlight the impact of chance encounters in people's lives. In the former, main character Eddie changes greatly after meeting five people in what he believes is heaven and in the latter, the titular protagonist Pi must create a new lifestyle for himself when stranded on a lifeboat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with a tiger named Richard Parker. These relationships mark a new beginning in Eddie and Pi’s lives and offer both characters a sense of wisdom, truth and an accurate insight into life.
Relationships tend to be fragile, but from that same fragility one can procure a sharp sense of wisdom when making decisions. Pi realizes that Richard Parker brings structure to his otherwise hopeless and bleak circumstances. The creature’s mere existence on the lifeboat occupies Pi with a quest for survival while motivating him to stay one step ahead of the tiger. Pi affirms this in Chapter 57:
It was Richard Parker who calmed me down. It is the irony of this story that the one who scared me witless to start with was the very same who brought me peace, purpose, I dare say even wholeness (Martel 162).

Richard Parker forces Pi to learn how to survive on his own. As the story progresses, Pi begins to value his life more and more, even discarding personal beliefs for the sake of his well-being. At the same time, Pi does his best to placate Richard Parker by satisfying the tiger’s needs for food and water, fearing the repercussions of a hungry carnivore. In this quotation, Pi becomes aware of how Richard Parker is affecting his life, which is in a positive way. Richard Parker is the catalyst in stimulating Pi to work towards his survival, in turn helping him to adapt to his situation on the lifeboat. Consequently, Pi is able to combat his fear, an emotion he discusses in Chapter 56. He sees fear as “life’s only true opponent” and goes on to explain that “…only fear can defeat life” (Martel 161). This is proof of Pi’s growth and that he is maturing into a calmer, rational individual ready to take hold of his situation and do anything in his power to survive. He is wise enough to understand that he has no other alternative than to live with Richard Parker on the lifeboat, because killing the tiger off is too difficult and dangerous for him. Pi attributes his relationship with Richard Parker, through which he overcame his fear, to his desire for survival. If Pi can keep Richard Parker content, his safety is ensured. Similarly to Pi, Eddie achieves a sense of wisdom after learning about his past. In the fifth chapter of Albom’s novel, Eddie meets his first person in heaven, a circus freak show participant from his past called the Blue Man. Eddie learns from him that he could have almost died in his...

Find Another Essay On Life of Pi and The Five People You Meet in Heaven

Choices in Life and religion. Quotes from "Life of Pi".

1051 words - 4 pages been around since a human being began walking on earth. There is no doubt that Pi Patel in "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel was asking himself the same questions. He was a young curios boy who tried to understand how life "works". Over the centuries since the bible was written, many different schools of thought have been established around the world, for example Catholic, Hebrew, Presbyterian, and Baptist. However, many people that are raised in

The Role of Religion in The Life of Pi and The Scarlet Letter

528 words - 2 pages survive. Pi believes in God strongly, and said prayers every night during his journey on the boat. This could be the reason he had survived in the first place; religion gave him reason to never give up hope and fight for life. It seemed as though religion was always working along with Pi, while religion put Hester in the bad situation she was in. If the people of her town didn’t believe so strongly in religion, she would not have been punished

The Journeys of Survival in Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist and Yann Martel’s Life of Pi

1852 words - 7 pages Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist and Yann Martel’s Life of Pi In his first voyage in 1492, when Christopher Columbus set out to search for India, he ended up landing in America on a small island in the Caribbean Sea instead of Asia. He then made several other voyages to the New World in search for riches, thinking that he was exploring an already explored land. He had discovered America, which was the greatest riches of them all. This shows that

Survival in Yann Martel's Life of Pi and The Story of Keesh

1088 words - 4 pages In the short story, “The Story of Keesh”, and the novel excerpt, “Life of Pi”, the authors develop characters who have the will to survive in extreme environments. “The Story of Keesh” is mainly about a teen boy, named Keesh, who has to find the strength to live in an extreme arctic environment, long ago, on the rim of the polar sea. Similarly, the “Life of Pi” is mainly about a young man named Pi who makes an effort to survive in extraordinary

Similarities Between Human and Animal Characters in Life of Pi

1034 words - 4 pages story of animals and the real people in the factual story. In Life of Pi, Pi meets many different animals on his journey on the lifeboat that influence him in many ways, including the zebra, which represents the Taiwanese sailor; the hyena, which represents the chef; Orange Juice, the orangutan, which represents Pi’s mother; and the Royal Bengal tiger, Richard Parker, which represents Pi himself. A beautiful Grant’s zebra jumps onto the lifeboat

The Significance of Richard Parker in Life of Pi

1821 words - 7 pages ears. A second later you are standing in water up to your knees. Then in a blink of an eye you are alone. In the darkness, with nothing but water surrounding you. That is exactly where Pi was in Life of Pi. Sitting in a lifeboat in the middle of Pacific Ocean watching the Tsimtum go down not knowing if his family survived. The only things around him were a hyena, orangutan, zebra, and Richard Parker, who is a tiger. The other animals on the

The Challenges in Yann Martel's Life of Pi

1219 words - 5 pages Bengali polymath, Rabindranath Tagore, once said “you can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” In the novel Life of Pi by Yann Martel, the protagonist, Pi, faces many challenges at sea while being accompanied by a tiger by the name of Richard Parker. This tiger, though a nuisance, proves to be essential in the role of Pi’s survival. Throughout the story, Richard Parker symbolizes survival, a reflection of Pi, and a

Aspects of Pi in Richard Parker - Life of Pi

596 words - 2 pages Aspects of Pi in Richard Parker: Humans often see themselves as having split personalities to a degree, be it when they're angry or calm, happy or sad, or drunk and sober. They may have different views of which of these personalities are better, which may be 'evil,' but they exist in almost . In the novel The Life of Pi by Yann Martell we see Piscene Patell (Pi) has allowed for this other personality become personified as a tiger on his

The Human Struggle in Yann Martel's Life of Pi

1021 words - 5 pages Humans generally face struggles in their lifetime. Such struggles could be within themselves or with someone or something else but commonly stem from some sort of opposition in lifestyle. In Yann Martel’s novel, Life of Pi, Pi’s passion for personal survival conflicts with his moral obligations to himself internally, morphing his external character. Throughout the novel, Pi’s thoughts reveal and internal struggle between his desire to live and

In Life of Pi, how does the relationship between Richard Parker and Pi change as the story progresses? What is its significance?

1124 words - 4 pages As the final chapter of Part Two comes to an end, Pi breaks into tears, crying the following words: "Richard Parker, a companion of my torment, awful, fierce thing that kept me alive, moved forward and disappeared forever from my life." In the world today where civilization exists, the idea of an innocent sixteen-year-old boy surviving his ordeal with a feral Bengal tiger lies beyond our concept of reality. However, it cannot be denied that the

Coping With Fear in Life of Pi

1758 words - 7 pages There are many conventional methods to coping with one’s fears but the most effective is by facing it. In the novel, Life of Pi, the main character, Pi, is one of astonishment; even through the darkest points in his life, he is still able to somehow remain both faithful and hopeful. Pi clings to his religious faith as a way of coping with his fears as opposed to acknowledging conventional methods. He is able to do so through praying

Similar Essays

The Five People You Meet In Heaven

1730 words - 7 pages The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom is an allegorical story of a man named Eddie who dies, goes to Heaven, and meets five people who, in some way or another, were impacted or had an impact on his life. Whether or not Eddie knew it, God had put these people in Eddie's life for a reason, and he goes to Heaven and finds out answers about his life and the people he is meeting. The story starts with Eddie, an old man (Eighty years

Mitch Albom’s, The Five People You Meet In Heaven

1069 words - 4 pages understand. One decision causes an effect, maybe on your life or maybe on someone else’s life. That effect will cause something else. It’s what I think of as a ripple effect. Everything happens for a reason, and all of the events that lead up to our “now” makes us who we are. Works Cited Albom, Mitch. The Five People You Meet in Heaven. New York: Hyperion. 2003.

The 5 People You Meet In Heaven

1393 words - 6 pages little hands, then nothing. A flash of light, a big impact, then .. Nothing.      The rest of the book is about Eddie’s journey through heaven, meeting the five people who have made an impact on Eddie’s life in one way or another. “Everything happens for a reason”. I think we have all heard that quote. Sometimes you know the reason, and sometimes you don’t. Sometimes it takes your whole life to figure out and understand

The Savagery In The Life Of Pi

1177 words - 5 pages In the book Life of Pi, written by Yann Martel, the idea of the boundaries between savagery and humanity are tossed around quite a bit. In Pi’s life or death situation, the idea of savagery becomes a little obscured by the desperation to survive. There are several acts within the story that people who are not in Pi’s situation would possibly see as being savage. As I read the text, I see most of Pi’s actions as a need to survive. Pi creates