The Purpose of Religious Storytelling
The entire novel is a story about Pi surviving in a lifeboat with hungry animals. But at the end we learn that the animals were never there and in fact he had been stuck with other humans who died. This shows that he created the animal story to comfort himself and avoid facing the harsh reality in which his mother was eaten and he killed a man, proving that religious storytelling is used as a comforting mechanism by Pi Patel to protect his psyche.
The Existence of God
Throughout the novel god is referenced repeatedly by Pi, who is devoutly religious. But seeing the horrors that occur, such as the horrible death of his mother, makes the reader wonder where was god when all this was happening? In the end Pi asks the reader to choose between the two tails and in essence is asking whether you prefer to believe in God or the dry truth.
Man's Fierce Will to Survive
Pi Patel, who is a peaceful and religious boy, murders a man and begins to eat meat in order to survive. If he had been asked as a child if he was capable of either of those actions he would have denied it. This clearly shows that man has a fierce will to survive and will do anything when its existence is threatened. In the story Pi's will to survive is represented by Richard Parker, a Tiger.