How much faith do you have in god? Would you be able to last two hundred and twenty-seven long hard days at sea with a tiger? Throughout the novel “Life of Pi” by Yann Martel we see Pi develop a love for religion -three of them actually and god. As the novel goes on and the situations he is put in, his faith for god only gets stronger. Constantly using his famous saying “and so, it goes with god” which is used repeatedly and introduced in the story as a tactic to make you believe or have faith in God. Pi is a young boy who enjoys taking a leap of faith, being very optimistic and being open to many different religions even when they do not mesh with each other. Pi himself practices not one but three different religions, Hinduism, Christian as well as Muslim. With that being said the use of “and so, it goes with god” is used repeatedly and introduced in the story as a tactic to make you believe or have faith in God.
The novel is simply a metaphor for choosing to take that leap of faith instead of the most human realistic version of events the one that has the slightly less enjoyable outcome. In an interview the author Yann Martel gave his own summary of the novel being “Life is a story; you can choose your own story; a story with God is the better story.” (insert source here) In the novel there is a conversation between Pi, Mr. Okamoto and Mr. Chiba. Pi starts off by saying
“So tell me, since it makes no factual difference to you and you can’t prove the question either way, which story do you prefer? Which is the better story, the story with animals or the story without animals?’ Mr. Okamoto: ‘That’s an interesting question?’ Mr. Chiba: ‘The story with animals.’ Mr. Okamoto: ‘Yes. The story with animals is the better story.’ Pi Patel: ‘Thank you. And so it goes with God.” (Martel 317)
with that being said when Pi constantly refers to “and so, it goes with god” he’s simply suggesting that the religious story makes life more magical or meaningful then the life without god and faith while there is no scientific fact if god is in fact real or not there is no harm in having faith in something that could brighten up your life a bit by having a slight glimpse of faith for a better outcome in life.
Life of Pi tells us a lot about suffering and keeping our faith in God. It also tells us that beyond human suffering there is a better story which will teach us about great life lessons. We see Pi in the middle of the ocean struggling with how “Faith in God is an opening up, a letting go, a deep trust, a free act of love – but sometimes it was so hard to love. Sometimes my heart was sinking so fast with anger, desolation and weariness, I was afraid it would sink to the very bottom of the Pacific and I would not be able to lift it back up” (Martel 231). Pi at this point is angry with god and the situation but quickly realizes that if we give up then we lose and if we continue fighting, standing up in front of our enemies will be the greatest reward. This is a prime example with religion and God how people tend to start to lose or question their hope and faith in God due to the fact that why would God do this to them? People get angry with god or stop believing in him when things get tough or something bad happens, we only believe in him when the going gets good and when that stops we tend to think if god did exist he wouldn’t have anything bad happen in this world especially to people who believe so strongly in him when we are suffering or in pain we simply blame god because he is punishing us. Pi throughout the novel continues to practice his religious faiths even while he is at sea with some struggles in-between. It does at times seem like Pi’s faith in the first part of the novel is too easy and untroubled until all his preachers come to realization that he is practising three different religions that do not blend together in the slightest. The great test it undergoes on the ocean during his suffering when “everyone has drowned. Every single thing I value in life has been destroyed. And I am allowed no explanation? I am to suffer hell without any account from heaven?” (insert citation here) Pi often comes close to losing hope.
In conclusion Yann Martel uses “and so, it goes with god” to refer to the fact that anyone can live a life without having any religion or any faith in god but why live a life so boring. Pi had “a germ of religious exaltation, no bigger than a mustard seed, was sown in me and left to germinate. It has never stopped growing since that day” (Martel) he was addicted to learning more and more religions and for that he saved his own life. Knowing and having all that faith in god gave Pi enough power and determination to continue pushing through the water and surviving, without it Pi would have never made it out alive after two hundred and twenty-seven hard long days at sea.