Pirates: A Pagan Agenda?

In his book, True Sexual Morality, Daniel Heimbach includes a chapter titled, “The Return of Sexual Paganism,” in which he exposes the pagan agenda to revive goddess worship. Pagans, of course, despise the Christian God and reject biblical authority. Naomi Goldenburg, a sexual pagan feminist, writes, “as we watch Christ and Yahweh tumble to the ground, we will [soon] completely outgrow the need for an external god” (Changing of the Gods [Boston: Beacon, 1979], 25). Mary Daly, a former Catholic theologian, considers the biblical God one, who “represents the necrophilia of patriarchy, whereas Goddess affirms the life-loving being of women and nature” (Beyond God the Father [Boston: Beacon, 1973], 29). In place of the Christian God revealed in the Scriptures, pagans are encouraging the worship of the goddess, Artemis, or Diana (Heimbach, 67-69).

Here is where I will make the first comment regarding the recent movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (yes, I actually went to see a movie). One of the subplots in this movie involved the pagan goddess of the sea, Calypso, who was trapped in the fleshly body of Tia Dalma, due to the betrayal of her lover, Davie Jones. After she was released from her human body, the crew bows in fear and reverence before her, as Captain Barbosa suggests that she act on their behalf. Without doubt, the movie is not intended to be Christian; however, the reality of the influence of paganism in our culture struck me all the more. For me, the enchanting Calypso was only an illustration of the goddess worship now encouraged by the “leaders” of the pagan feminist movement.

What floored me even more than the goddess Calypso, however, was the role of the character, Elizabeth Swan. Towards the end of the movie, the pirate lords agree to make her, not Queen of the pirates, but King. Why the film writers did not choose to make her queen, I believe, is directly related to what Heimbach also exposes about the pagan agenda; namely, it seeks to erase gender roles (124-30). Evidently, the film writers had no trouble with making a woman king, that is, giving her the title normally ascribed to a male sovereign. As Calypso illustrated pagan goddess worship, so King Elizabeth Swan illustrated the rising pagan influence which challenges the distinct roles set by the Creator for men and women.

Does the movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, have a pagan agenda? It may not. On the other hand, it certainly illustrates it.


4 Responses to “Pirates: A Pagan Agenda?”

  1. billmeister16 Says:

    Arggh! I feel that a pirate has ransacked my idea for a future post! That’s ok, I was going to say exactly the same thing except probably with a little bit more swagger reminiscent of Captain Jack Sparrow. Grace and peace!

  2. Ched Says:

    Very interesting. Good observations. The “goddess” subplot was rather overt (and equally alarming). Though, the “king” of the Pirates seemed to be a perfunctory office. Even Elizabeth referenced her title of “king” with obvious sarcasm.

    On a more random note, whenever you become a world-renowned NT scholar, I’m going to refer to you as the “exegetical Whizzbang that I went to class with in yesteryears.” There is no stopping this.

  3. Brandon Says:

    Bret! I’m so proud of you!

    Look at you…bustin’ out cultural references to display the error of man’s ways and point the way to God’s truth. I’m speechless. You’re like Paul…only with red hair, not Hebrew, not a Roman citizen, and not an apostle…so….yeah.

    I saw the flick as well. As far as action and funny characters go (Jack Sparrow…savvy?) I love this trilogy. I saw all of them.

    But you are dead on in your assertion that a seemingly feminist agenda bubbled to the top of the plot in this film. Even if the script writer did it subconsciously, it reeked of a specific message. And it’s a message that is wrong. Like you said, “Does this movie have an agenda? It may not. But it certainly illustrates it.”

    I think the plot of Pirates III is very telling of what’s happening in our culture concerning the “supreme” will of a female. It has become a sin to question anything a woman does, whether that be to have an abortion, be a lesbian, or to act as a man. This is an area that needs to be redeemed by Christ.

    I’m thankful that sinners though we are, Jesus’ hand is not too short to save. We need to pray over this area.

    (p.s. – Writing this, I can almost sense how volatile the above words are in our culture. I can’t imagine being a prophet back in O.T. times and having to say things that NO ONE wanted to hear.)

  4. benarbour03 Says:


    I haven’t seen the movie (yet), but I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for the things you’ve mentioned. Thanks for the observations.

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