Sunday, February 24, 2013

What I See In Movies

So, yesterday I went to see 5 movies nominated for Academy awards.  Each one resonated with me in some small, yet significant, way (especially Beasts of the Southern Wild (not in any small part due to the fact that their home reminded me of my dining room table and therefore reserved all judgement!!).
One in particular, in this moment of my journey, was Life of Pi.  As it happens, I am currently reading the book and am looking forward to continuing it to see how the book plays out compared to the movie.  (And, not for the last time, seeing the movie is RARELY, if EVER, the same as reading the book!!)  The life of a young Indian boy turned man and the trials he faces in between.  In no way do I mean to belittle his journey that was most extraordinary.  But his connection to the 3 religions of Abraham is the thing that really captured me.  He connects himself to each and is a self-described Christian, Muslim, and Hindu.  In the book, he is called out by the leaders of these three faiths in an unexpected encounter on the street.  (I was going to say "unfortunate" encounter, but I think that would be a flimsy translation of the incident.)  The are confounded that Pi can partake in each of their rituals and faiths; each leader defends their faith as one true path to God, condemning each of the others for this and that which conflicts with their own deep beliefs.  In the end, Pi expresses that all he wants to do is love God and show God's love in the best way he knows how.  Pi sees God in each of these things.  He sees how they are connected.  He unites them in his one being.  I love this so much because when I speak to my Christian friends, my secular friends, my Muslim friends, Jewish friends (well, you get the idea), I'm always looking for likenesses.  How do we see things similarly?  On what can we agree?  None of us are the same.  None of us are clones, physically, mentally, or spiritually.  But the more I see how we are alike, the closer I find myself to peace.   Each of us have trials we must face.  Each our own burdens to bear.  This is a quote from the movie with which I will leave you:

Adult Pi Patel: Faith is a house with many rooms. 
Writer: But no room for doubt? 
Adult Pi Patel: Oh plenty, on every floor. Doubt is useful, it keeps faith a living thing. After all, you cannot know the strength of your faith until it is tested. 

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