Friday, May 30, 2008

Are you Lost?

A pretty unsettling title for a Christian blog, don't you think? But the truth is, I'm a total geek for the TV show Lost. Last night was the big finale, and I haven't watched it yet SO DON'T SPOIL IT. But I usually read up on the "Doc Jensen" preview put up at Entertainment Weekly and it inspired me to post. (I admit to falling way behind and lacking motivation, so at least this gets me logged on.)

Religious themes are stashed all over in the show as there is an ongoing tension between the theological and philosophical, the empirical and the spiritual. There are mysteries throughout, and one of the funnest parts of being a "Lostie" is trying to keep up with other fans' theories as to what in the world is really going on.

Early on, the main theory was that the island was Purgatory, but the writers/producers have said that's not true. And there's been too much science since the first season for that to be the case. There's always something mystical going on, but usually later explained by science. But we still have unexplained healings, apparent moral judgements by "smokey", and ghosts, a lot of ghosts.

My theory, once Purgatory was shot down, was that the island is Eden and all that we've seen since season two have been the results of people trying to exploit Eden for science. I've expanded to think that the purpose of the Dharma Initiative was in fact to scientifically either create or prove/disprove God. I'm still sticking with that theory in some form, but the show is good at proving most fans wrong.

I hope the show doesn't take a strong anti-religion theme, which has become too common of late. But Doc Jensen sees the signs. I'll post his observations and let you figure the rest out. Namaste!

''GOLDEN JESUS'' AND OTHER SUBVERSIVE SYMBOLS

I know some of you don't buy my theory that the smack-stuffed Virgin Mary idols were an encoded reference to Karl Marx's critique of religion as the opiate of the masses. But what do you make of the golden Jesus statue belonging to Hurley's mom — the one he almost employed as a club in last week's episode? According to a simple Google search, ''Golden Jesus'' happens to be street slang for heroin. Explain THAT one, non-believers!

Okay, fine: coincidence. But what about ''Oceanic 815''? Ever do research into that? ''Oceanic Feeling'' was Sigmund Freud's famous term to describe the (misunderstood) yearning for/belief in God. But almost as a parry to Freud's thrust, there's ''8:15,'' which correlates to the Bible's most famous oceanic survival tale, the story of Noah's Ark, in which God destroys the world, then rebuilds it through a ''chosen one'' and his family. The verse, Genesis 8:15, is famously one of the shortest in the Bible: ''And God said to Noah:''

And then there's ''Bearing 305,'' which is the directional heading the freighter needs to take to the Island, lest it get lost in the time-storm anomaly. This surely links to John 3:05, which was also one of the Biblical citations on Mr. Eko's stick. It reads: ''Jesus answered, 'I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and spirit.' This verse is part of a larger passage that serves as the foundation of ''born again'' Christian theology. However, it should be noted that the story of this verse involves a discussion between Jesus and a learned man named Nicodemus, who walks away from his initial encounter with Christ deeply confused.

Taken together with ''Christian Shephard'' (Jesus) + ''Empty Coffin'' (Empty Tomb) – ''Christian Shephard was a boozy, emotionally abusive, untrustworthy, adulterous jerk of a man,'' and the sum total is a show that is supporting its ongoing thematic debate between science and faith with cleverly constructed symbols and allusions that mirror that discussion — and specifically grapple with the most critical, non-negotiable elements of the Christian faith: the claim that Jesus Christ died and rose from the dead.

Am I wrong?

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