The villains in Disney's new fantasy are the greedy white males who have come to exploit the land and steal its gold. Even the best of them, handsome John Smith, is made to look foolish compared to the nature-wise woman he loves. Their exchange of wisdom flows one way only: from Indian to European. So when Smith unwittingly offers to build an English civilization on Indian lands, Pocahontas shows her disgust, then teaches him a lesson on pagan oneness. Her message now echoes in the hearts of children everywhere through the hit song "The Colors of the Wind", which keeps reminding them that mountains, trees... everything is filled with spiritual life and linked in a never-ending circle.
It all makes sense when you watch the movie. With subtle mastery, its makers highlight the anti-Western message and stir predictable indignation: How can the crude British sailors, so ignorant of the spiritual things, call natives "heathen"? Those Christian intruders are the real savages who batter the earth and rob its friends.
In contrast, the Indians seem flawless. They care for the land. They commune with its spirits. They love each other. Kekata, the tribal shaman or medicine man provides spiritual protection and guidance. The ghostly images in the smoke from his magic fire warn the tribe to shun the newcomers who "prowl the earth like ravenous wolves." The only exception is John Smith who has learned to see life and nature from Pocahonta's perspective. In the end, he risks his life to stop the war.
In line with today's quest for gender "equity", the deep spiritual insights come from women. As multicultural lessons tell us: patriarchy brings war and oppression; matriarchy brings wisdom and peace -- especially if the female heroines are non-Western. It doesn't matter if the source of matriarchal wisdom comes from humans, ancestral spirits, or nature spirits. So when chief Powhatan feels the spirit of Pocahontas dead mother guiding him, he heeds her lofty wisdom: "...there will be no more killing. Let us be guided instead to a place of peace."