At first glance, it may seem that the meaning of the Take Me to Church video by Hozier is completely unrelated to the lyrics of the song. But if you listen more closely to the text or read the translation, I’m sure that the connection between the lyrics and the video will become noticeable. Together with you, I will try to figure out what is the meaning of the Hozier – Take Me to Church video, why the song is dedicated to a woman, and the video demonstrates homosexual relationships, why the reference to Russia was needed, and what was still in the mysterious box.
The connection between the lyrics and the meaning of the Take Me to Church video
The text of the song Take Me to Church is built on one key metaphor – the beloved of the lyrical hero is identified with God, and the vocabulary used clearly points to the Christian god: the Heavens (heaven), amen (amen), actually church (church). But there are also pagan references: if I’m a pagan of a good times, my lover’s sunlight In general, the comparison of love with the worship of God in literature and art is not uncommon. But in combination with the video sequence, it becomes obvious that Hozier is arguing with religion, in any case, with the church.
The text is literally permeated with sexuality: she tells me “worship in the bedroom”, there’s no sweeter innocence than our gentle sin (there is no sweeter innocence than our gentle sin), etc. Hozier contrasts sexuality , love between two people – love of god, religion and church. As we know from the words of the performer himself, he does not favor the Catholic Church. And Hozier eloquently expressed his rejection in the lyrics of the song.
Now let’s leave the lyrics and turn to the video sequence. The content is clear in general terms – a homosexual couple whose homophobic neighbors found out about their love is being persecuted. How does this relate to the text about love (for a woman!) and religion? And the connection is very direct. All the same sexuality (in the text – the love of a male hero for a woman, in the video – the love of two men) is persecuted by society (in the text, the opposing force is the church, in the video – other members of society, the neighbors of the heroes). Touching and passionate scenes of love – and the gloomy horror that homophobes carry with them, armed with Molotov cocktails. All this echoes the text, and the general idea expressed by both the song and the video is the freedom of a person to love the one he has chosen, in the form in which both like it. And does not matter, if the sexual relationship between a man and a woman is condemned by the church, and the love of two men causes rejection by other residents of the city. In fact, both scenarios are just particular cases of the conflict between the feelings of lovers and the harsh reality, in whom or in whatever it is embodied.
What does the Russian reference in the Take Me to Church video mean?
While homosexual relationships and marriages are beginning to be recognized in an increasing number of states, Russia is surprising the whole world with a surge of homophobia, the adoption of obsolete laws and more frequent cases of aggression against homosexuals. Hozier himself called the situation in Russia in this regard “nightmare”, and it is not surprising that the heroes of the video watch a report from a gay parade on TV in Russia. Of course, this should not be taken as a reproach towards our country – rather, it is a sign of support for those who live in such difficult conditions, because the heroes of the Take Me to Church video are in exactly the same situation of misunderstanding and rejection as the homosexual community in Russia.
What is the hero of the Take Me to Church video hiding in the box?
At the beginning of the Take Me to Church video, we see one of the characters burying a small box or chest in the ground. In the end, an aggressive mob finds and burns the box, despite the hero’s protests. Many viewers would really like to know what is in the mysterious box. But since the content is not shown to us, we must assume that the box is a symbol, a metaphor. On the Internet, I met opinions that the box symbolizes the fragile relationship of the characters. Having destroyed it, the homophobic neighbors literally trampled on these relations. I believe the box is a metaphor for mystery. The hero puts her in chains and buries her in the ground so that no one will know about his secret – about what is happening between him and his lover. But their secret becomes known, and the crowd deprives the couple of the most important thing in their relationship – the sacrament of what is happening between two lovers, destroys their shared memories. If you really want to have at least something in the box, then it can be, for example, a handwritten oath of allegiance to each other or some other symbolic and significant item for both heroes.
The fame of the young Irish musician was brought to almost everyone by the well-known song “Take Me to Church”, released in September 2013. The song immediately went viral and was on the ears of all popular country charts around the world.
A lot of scandals, in turn, received a video for this song with a content that is very contradictory to the social order and norms. The Internet was immediately filled with various kinds of theories and opinions about the meaning of the video and the song as a whole. Many of them have been refuted by the performer himself and are assigned to the “great” list of erroneous theories. But the fans did not stop trying and still tried to explain such an intriguing clip from different points of view. Let’s figure out the meaning of the video for this great song!
The meaning of Take me to church by Hozier
What is the main question about the clip? The presence of representatives of the LGBT community confused some fans and only confused the listeners even more: the fact is that due to the inconsistency of the video and the lyrics of the song, it seems that they are not connected at all in any way (which, of course, is an erroneous decision ). There is still a non-obvious connection between the song and the video, you can see it if you carefully look at the video and re-read the text again. As always, the lyrics are full of metaphors: the protagonist’s girlfriend is compared (identified) with the church and God, with everything “correct”.
The plot of the video tells us about two guys in love, whose relationship was not accepted by their neighbors (obviously, homophobes) and are trying in every possible way to harm the main characters. Both in the video and in the song, the theme of non-acceptance of passionate and sexual love from the environment can be traced (in the song, the negative side is the church, in the video, the neighbors). It turns out that the song and the video tell about two different examples of the same problem, show the viewer two stories. The main idea is hostility towards people, society, who despise, condemn someone else’s love and try to harm their beloved in some way; a person has every right to love whoever he wants, and in the way he wants it. Also, a minor reference of the musician to Russia and its social order caused bright disputes.
The singer has repeatedly spoken about his personal dislike for the church and its foundations, for homophobic movements, etc. Leaving a visible indication of Russia in the clip, the performer once again decided to show his attitude towards the country, which still prohibits same-sex marriages. As we know now, in 2019, various kinds of organizations to “eliminate” open representatives of the LGBT community began to gain popularity in Russia. Expressing his indignation towards our country, Hozier wanted to draw public attention even more strongly to the wrong way of Russian society and emphasize the importance of the problem of perception of people of non-traditional orientation in different countries. The singer showed us a love story for which we began to feel sympathy, but then he demonstrated a view of the same love of the representatives of society and showed their perception of this “sinful” love. Such an approach only emphasized all the incorrectness of condemning someone else’s love according to personal ideas even more sharply!
In 2013, the Irish musician, singer and poet Hozier released the song “Take me to church”, and later a video for it. In the song, the performer tells about his love for the girl, equates her to the Christian God. The text contains sexuality, which according to religion is a sin. In the clip, there is some discrepancy with the words: the video demonstrates the homosexual relationship of two men. So what is the connection between the song and the video, what is this video about? Let’s try to figure it out.
At first glance, it may seem that what is shown in the video has nothing to do with the words of the song, but if you watch the video carefully and analyze it, everything falls into place. In the Christian religion, sex is a sin, something forbidden and condemned. Hozier contrasts love and sexuality with the love of God. According to the performer himself, he does not have sympathy for religion, which is openly demonstrated in the song.
Now let’s move on to the video for this song. It demonstrates the homosexual relationship of a couple of men, a love that society does not approve of. The heroes are watched by their homophobic neighbors, who harass the lovers in order to destroy their bond. The video has the same sexuality as the song, subjected to hatred by people. Already here there is an interweaving with the meaning of the text – just as the love of a man and a woman is not welcomed by religion, so homosexual relations are not accepted by society. Touching scenes of the life of lovers are replaced by shots showing cruel people who are ready to kill an unconventional couple.
Even at the beginning of the clip, the viewer is presented with a scene in which one of the men digs a box into the ground. Its contents are not shown, but later it becomes clear that the box contains something important for the couple, a symbol of their love, which is later abused by homophobic neighbors. The crowd attacks one of the heroes, beats him up, and then throws his “treasure” into the fire. The box is used here as a metaphor – a symbol of relationships that society has trampled on.
One of the interesting moments in the clip is the scene with the TV broadcasting the gay parade in Russia. Crowd with a banner “Gays for equality without compromise” opposes homophobia. Why Russia? The answer is simple: while same-sex relationships and marriages are becoming the norm in the world, undisguised hatred of such love still reigns here. The performer himself spoke of the situation in Russia as a nightmare, but Hozier did not insult the country – most likely he simply sympathizes with people living in the same conditions as the heroes of his video.
So we figured out the meaning of the video, as well as its connection with the lyrics of the song. After analyzing the work of the performer both on the words and the video sequence, one can come to the conclusion that the singer is dissatisfied with the situations that have developed in the world and stereotypes about a particular problem. Hozier combines the problems of society, quite different at first glance, in one video, not understanding why society’s attitude towards one problem is positive, and to another negative. The performer expresses his opinion about these situations and makes the listener think.
The composition of the popular Irish artist Hozier “Take me to church” became available to a wide audience on September 16, 2013, but the song gained world fame only in May 2014, after the singer’s performance on the popular American TV show David Lutterman. After the program went on the air, the track received rotation on radio stations, and also entered all the world charts, becoming one of the most popular songs of 2014. Covers of this song were performed by many world celebrities, and Hozier himself made a breakthrough and became one of the most sought-after indie artists of our time.
The song “Take me to church”, to which the singer owes his success, poignantly tells about deep and devoted love. The unequivocal meaning of the composition lies in its very name, which can be translated as “Take me to church”, but here there is a metaphor, because it does not mean a temple in the literal sense of the word, but a kind of ephemeral temple of feelings and emotions. The author has turned his love into a religion and is ready to worship his beloved as a deity, which he declares in the lines of the chorus that come right after the very “Take me to church”. He says that he will serve her with dog loyalty (“I’ll worship like a dog”) and repent of all sins (“I’ll tell you my sins”), as if before a confessor. The author knows that for this devotion he will be rewarded with betrayal (“… you can sharpen your knife”),
Another analogy of love attachment with religion is revealed in the verses of the song. Just as a religious object is not always worthy of worship, so the author’s conditional beloved is hardly worthy of blind adoration. The singer describes her as a rather cynical person who is accustomed to the disapproval of society (“Knows everybody’s disapproval”), and their love affair is clearly toxic and brings him suffering. The author puts the object of his love on a pedestal, and solitary worship brings him comfort (“The only heaven I’ll be sent to is when I’m alone with you”), although he admits that there is something abnormal in this, almost sick (“I was born sick”).
In the second verse, the author compares himself to an ancient pagan who worships sunlight and makes sacrifices to a demanding goddess (“She demands the a sacrifice”). He lists all the deeds that he can do in the name of his love, even the most absurd, and then declares that during the rituals of worship he has no other authorities (“No masters, no kings”) and nothing is more important than his sweet pleasures of communication. with your favorite deity. The author admits that he sins, but in the midst of the madness and sorrows of the earthly world, it is sin that makes him feel truly human (“Only when I am human”) and makes him honest about his own desires (“Only then I am clean”).
Hozier himself in many interviews repeatedly confirmed the presence of religious analogies in the text of his famous song, and at the same time compared love with death. Falling in love, a person seems to die and is reborn again into a completely new personality, which is formed by emotions and the object of love – there is no turning back, because the lover will never be the same. For a sincerely loving person, the object of his love is an unconditional deity and the highest of authorities, this is a well-known truth, meanwhile, the author also draws attention to the fact that often such selfless love does not receive a response, turning into admiration for a dumb and merciless god.
“Take me to church” is a song about just such an exhausting feeling