How can I relate Life of Pi to real life?

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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think one way to relate The Life of Pi to real life is to think about Pi's outlook on religion.  Pi claims that he is Christian, Muslim, and Hindu . . . at the same time.  Every time I see the "Coexist" bumper sticker, I think of Pi.  I think of Pi, because he doesn't have a problem with all three religions coexisting within his life.  He sees the three religions coexist within the city of Pondicherry, and he believes that they can successfully coexist within himself as well.  I think that outlook on life and religion is incredibly relevant to "real life."  If more religious fanatics could see religions like Pi sees religions, I think there would be a lot less violence around the world.  

A bigger "real life" application of the story for me is the theme of never giving up.  Pi is in a bad situation.  He's stuck on a life boat with minimal supplies in the middle of a huge ocean.  Oh yeah, and don't forget that there is a giant, hungry tiger in the boat with him.  But despite Pi's dire circumstances, he works one problem at a time and ceases to give up.  If you've read Andy Weir's book The Martian, it's the same kind of concept.  Both Watney and Pi are somehow able to correctly work one problem at a time and maintain high levels of hope.  I think that is incredibly applicable to real life.  That kind of positive thinking and "keep moving forward" attitude is something that I try to instill in my students and the athletes that I coach.  Life will always throw curve balls and give you set backs.  That's to be expected.  What's important though is how you handle those set backs and find ways to keep moving forward.  That's what The Life of Pi teaches readers about real life.