Saturday, December 8, 2007

Learning from LOST

My wife and I are watching the old seasons of LOST so we can prepare for the new season. It is my favorite show, but since I don't watch TV any other time (unless a football game is on) that may not mean a lot to you.

I thought something that happened early in the season was very interesting. Not interesting to just viewers of the show, but interesting to anyone.

The people who crash land on the island find a leader in a man named Jack Shepherd. He is a trauma surgeon and is able to help the wounded and organize the castaways and lead them through trials. But, something is missing.

He is able to help them with every Earthly need, but they are always wanting more. He doesn't want to officiate a funeral for those who died in the crash. He isn't interested in theories about the seemingly magical properties of the island. When the castaways need leadership in these metaphysical matters, he comes up short.

Enter John Locke, my favorite character. He is a man of faith (and rightly so, if you've seen the show) and a spiritual leader for the island. While Jack is thinking about signal fires or radio transmissions, John is thinking about how each person is growing spiritually on the island and how they can all come to a better understanding of themselves. A sense that this crash landing is not an accident, but their fate, has gripped the survivors and it is John who is able to lead them into this fate and give them answers and direction when facing the mysteries of the island, which only parallel the mysteries in their own souls.

Why do I bring this up? Because it reminds me that people are not complete without spiritual food. We can have a money and friends but still lack. Humans are needy for physical things, like food, but we also are needy for spiritual things. It seems that we have been wired to want to eat after so many hours, to sleep on a daily basis, and to ask for spiritual fulfillment regularly. Isn't that an interesting thing? Why do humans exhibit this nature but other animals do not? I've never seen chickens worship foxes or seen my dad's cattle choose different paths than their well worn cow paths in order to find happiness. LOST reminds me of just how mysterious it is that humans are built this way.

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