(Image by La Fada)

Anybody interested in figuring out what’s happening in Lost should definitely be reading J. Wood’s blog, which I found while reading Above the Convenience Store. His analysis is transcendentally thorough.

I’ve posted some fascinating posts from his most recent blogs below but first – The Sri Lanka Video, explaining the origins of the Dharma Initiative, and the meaning of Hurley’s numbers.

LINK

Lost: Draw Me A Hexadecimal

Hexadecimals are interesting; they’re sometimes used to encode messages, and that was the case with the DHARMA Initiative Recruiting Project alternate reality game. One of its components was Ajira Airways, whose logo was on the bottle found in the outrigger. This one’s for the code-cracking geeks and the book nerds: The source code for the Ajira Airways web pages contains embedded hexadecimal code, code that wouldn’t show on the page itself. When translated, one block of code gives the famous biblical passage from John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Given the Catholic sub-themes, that’s understandable.

But the hex in the source code for the flights page gives: “So off they started about Irish sport and shoneen games the like of lawn tennis and about hurley and putting the stone and racy of the soil and building up a nation once again and all of that.” This particular line comes from chapter 12 of James Joyce’s Ulysses, the “Cyclops” chapter, and the context seems apt.

. . .

And so we have Ben’s van, the side of which reads Canton-Rainier, Carpet Cleaning. Canton-Rainier is an anagram for reincarnation. We have an encoded reference to a passage in a chapter that has a dead man walking, and we have seen supposedly dead people do things like drive cop cars, work in hospitals, and hang out at an asylum. But when it comes to the question of reincarnation, the Ulysses chapter from which the encoded passage comes is more of a teaser than an answer.

Those are the main books for this episode, but there are still some questions. Why does Aaron need to get back to the island? Is he a reincarnation of someone? Many will be wondering about Ben’s ulterior motive, or for that matter Sun’s, and for that matter, where is Ji Yeon? Something from a while back may be playing a role: We know that Sun has taken a controlling interest in her father’s business, Paik Heavy Industries (whose logo resembles the Orchid station logo). She’s also carrying that pistol everyplace; remember Chekov’s rule-if you show a gun, it has to be used.

Back during the first alternate reality game, it was learned that Paik Heavy Industries was building some sort of special ship for the Hanso Foundation, the Helgus Antonius. It departed in 2006 for Sri Lanka. Sun was already back by 2005, so she may have learned something through her father’s business.

Lost: Telling Time

That disjointed and reconstructed experience of narrative time and island time recalls a theme hinted at through references like A Brief History of Time, A Wrinkle in Time, Black Holes & Time Warps, and Minkowski: Wormholes. The freighter Minkowski was a nod to the Polish mathematician Hermann Minkowski, who in 1907 worked out the mathematics for Albert Einstein’s special theory of relativity (Minkowski was Einstein’s professor). In his calculations, he found that the theory worked if three dimensional Euclidean space was expanded to include time as a fourth dimension. This meant that time wasn’t just something we experienced, but that time occupied space like mass-time was part of space, spacetime. This also meant that just as all space is existing at once, so did all time, but just as we experience space in a mediated way — we can’t be everywhere at once — we experience time in a mediated way.

A wormhole is a shortcut through spacetime to overcome this limitation, and could theoretically be created by utilizing something called the Casimir effect. Ostensibly, a wormhole could allow us to experience different places in time, just like we can take a plane to experience different places in space. Both Wormholes and the Casimir effect, as well as Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne, have already been discussed in the Orchid orientation video and the first, eleventh, and last posts of the fourth season, so we’ll save some space here. But we have all the ingredients to make one: Crazy electromagnetic properties? Check. Casimir effect? Check. An enormous source of energy? According to Dr. Marvin Candle in the Orchid, check.

So far, it seems wormholes have been used in two ways: First, both Ben and the polar bear that Charlotte found in the desert were transported across time and space to Tunisia. Second, Desmond and the island inhabitants are being transported through time, but are statically located on the island. We still have a lot to learn about wormholes, but Ms. Hawking’s Foucault pendulum may hold a key (more on that later). For now, the one question is which came first, the electromagnetic anomaly or the Casimir effect.

Wormholes also have an analogue in narrative structure; what’s a flashforward or a flashback if not a wormhole through narrative time? And like spacetime, narrative time exists all at once, but is experienced in a mediated way; you can’t watch every scene in a film, or read every word in a book, at the same time. Narrative has long been returned to by those trying to model a theory of time.

Lost: Of Myths and Pisteutics

Why is it frozen down there — is it just because it’s so deep, or does it need to be cold for a purpose? What do the hieroglyphs on the wall say? And haven’t we seen that wheel before?

The wheel is another example of the eight-rayed star symbol that has been appearing through Lost, and it’s now become a mystical symbol used in a scientific context. It was on Mrs. Gardner’s wall, engraved on a tree, on the ceiling of the Pearl Station, on a ceiling in Michael’s flashback in “Special,” it surrounded a porthole in the Looking Glass Station, and is branded into Juliet’s back. (And since 2001: A Space Odyssey was brought up, it’s worth noting that Stanley Kubrick has employed the same symbol in his work.)

This is an intriguing symbol that’s not particular to any one culture or tradition, but retains some common traits wherever it ends up, particularly resurrection, rebirth and regeneration. Given the DHARMA Initiative’s namesake, the go-to place is Buddhism and the dharmachakra, an eight-spoked wheel that represents the eight-fold path of Buddhism, as well as rebirth or escaping the cycle of rebirth (see: all the DHARMA Initiative material). Similarly, in Catholicism, an eight-rayed symbol known as the baptismal represents resurrection and rebirth; the number eight also has more biblical symbolic significance than can be enumerated here (see: Mr. Eko, Charlie Pace). Early Gnostic Christians used the same symbol to represent the eight fundamental Aeons of their Ogdoad, as well as resurrection. In some versions, there was a snake in the center of the symbol, which is another emblem of rebirth (see: Valis, Smokey). The Gnostics borrowed the eight-rayed symbol from ancient Egypt, where the symbol stood for the eight fundamental emanations of creation called the Egyptian Ogdoad (see: all the hieroglyphs, on the Swan Station countdown, Ben’s back door to the back door of his closet, the pillar in the ice cave, Locke’s Eye of Horus scar). Through some twisting moves of mythic borrowing and revising called syncretism, this symbol also ties the Egyptian goddess Isis via a back door to the Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar and the star Sirius, and around again to the Gnostic wisdom principle Sophia. (The symbol takes its own hero’s journey.) This all has implications for Juliet, the person with the eight-rayed symbol seared into her flesh.

The amount of Lost analysis available online is far to vast to ever be calculated. Even Popular Mechanics writes about the show. This recent article features an Egyptologist’s interpretation of the show’s Hieroglyphics.

Lost Channels Ancient Egyptian Legend to Explain Smoke Monster

Allen agrees that the animal-headed human in the hieroglyphic Ben is fixated on is probably based on Anubis, though he says in actuality, no Egyptian scene looks like what’s shown on Lost. “I suspect that the colossus is also meant to be Anubis, too,” he says. But he points out, it’s actually more of a hybrid of Anubis and Taweret, the demon-wife of the Apep, the Egyptian’s original god of evil. (It’s said that Apep was only present at night, and therefore any evil happenings during the daytime were attributed to Taweret). “The thing on the head definitely looks like Taweret’s, but she never wears a kilt, which is clearly there in the back shot of the colossus. The colossus is probably holding two ankh-signs, like the one Anubis holds in this image, but he’s holding them like Taweret holds the two signs she holds, which are ‘protection’ signs, not ankhs.” Allen also notes that “the four toes on the statue fragment are more Taweret than Anubis, who has a human body and therefore five toes.”

Another interesting fact about Taweret: She’s the goddess of maternity and childbirth, the protector of women and children who was said to guard mothers and their newborn children. The creatures she’s made up of—hippopotamus, crocodile and lion— are all animals that would kill to protect their young. So if the statue does have elements of Taweret, and it was destroyed, could that explain why mothers who conceive on the island can’t carry to term?

LOST on Earth’s Mirror Matter Moon

The dark side faction is headed by someone who is born on Earth, moves to the island, and loses his father (e.g., Widmore, John); and the light side is led by someone who is born on the island and moves to Earth (e.g., Hanso, Aaron). These representatives are symbolic of the dots in the yin-yang. They’re identified and directed by dark and light guides: Alpert and Abaddon (then maybe Walt). There seems to be a supernatural force that ensures the balance between factions. The force might communicate in the form of figures associated with duality (e.g., maybe Jacob Bauthumley, the British shoemaker who wrote “The Light and Dark Sides of God;” and before him perhaps Thoth, Egyptian god of equilibrium, the moon, and the underworld). • Flight 815 crashed on the September 2004 equinox to deliver Locke and ensure Aaron’s birth on the island; Michael was kept alive to ensure that Aaron would get off the island; and John Locke will play the savior of this little world, as suggested by the cross formed by his right eye and the cut he received in the crash.

“The island is invisible. If you fly over it, you can’t see it. Satellites can’t take pictures of it.” [from a co-creator] Mirror matter (aka shadow or Alice matter, after Lewis Carroll’s works) is a hypothetical form of (invisible) dark matter. It’s based on a very basic concept in physics. Check out the latest Nobel Prize. Recent theorizing on mirror matter was sparked by work by physicists in Ann Arbor, MI. The key is that “our” side and the mirror matter side don’t “talk” all that much. But gravity is shared between them, and the electromagnetic force can be felt between them to a limited extent. This weak bond lets the chunk of mirror matter remain loosely connected to the surface of Earth, allowing some freedom of movement.

This theory is on some levels inspired by hard science, but it’s absolutely science fiction. The one book focused on making mirror matter understandable is by Australian physicist R. Foot. A co-creator made the odd remark that the show would end “just outside the Crab Nebula.” On the cover of Foot’s book, ‘Shadowlands’ (the name for the mirror matter side of the universe) is placed, almost amazingly, just outside the Crab Nebula. That is, it might just be an artful way of saying the show ends on the island. And that huge foot… Paying homage?

And I have to say I find interpretations like this to be interesting as well:

PATH[L]OS[T] – U Gotsta Be Inish 2 Finish!

In keeping with the FX used in creating the scenery Lost moves away from coloured lights to more diffuse colours mixed with shapes.
This blue capsuleless pyramid of light hovering begins this weeks continuation of Ordealis Masonica

The first 3 degrees of certain Masonic Lodges they call the Blue Degrees. This blue , a shade called Little Blue Alice Dress Blue, maid famous not by the intrepid Wonderlander , but a relative of Teddy Roosevelt , ALICE Roosevelt Longworth, also begowned a young James Shelby Downard , as he stepped into the dark night on a dark street to meet some strangers at his mother’s behest. The best laid plants of micey men were not to be an’ the diminutive dandy Downard saw them off , and who knows, maybe culled a kipple.{ An episode from JSD’s terrifying CARNIVALS OF LIFE AND DEATH]{Did Chuck Palahnuke read Downard?}

Standing at the Blue Gate we have the composite oppositrum ensconced firmly and fairly within James LaFleur [ aka Sawyer], a former killer and conman, now the Head of Security >>>
LaFleur-The Flower – Criminal- Policeman
here he awaits the oncoming trio of Jack-Kate-Hurley

Blue welcomes the new recruits , or masonically, the Initiates [ Inish = Island in Irish].
The Welcome banner invites the ‘nishies’ to go all the way, the octogon = 8. 8 slit top to bot = 33.
Splitting the Atom – increasing the force exponentially – 8 to the 33 times
=== 633825300042690425408022642688 ===

I have to recommend the Lost imagery at the Synchromystic Librarian as well.

Links:

Lostpedia
Lost Novel – Bad Twin
Lost Island Time
Rachel Blake
Hanso Exposed
Eye M Sick
Find 815
Lost on Twitter
Harold Perrineau Music Video
Oceanic Hotline
Hatch 23
Capcom’s Lost Blog
Locke’s Badass Journey
Where is Alvar?
Lost La Fleur
DJ Dan
The Hanso Foundation
Hanso Careers

(Image by Synchromystic Librarian)

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