Rabid fans of ABC’s “Lost” have many suspicions about the meaning of the show, fueled by their examination of myriad clues in exruciating detail. And while I was just as curious about things like where those numbers came from, I was more interested in knowing about the minds behind this hit show, which tells the story of the survivors of an airplane crash on what seems to be a deserted island.

From its very beginning, ABC’s hit has been awash in a sea of faith. Early theories speculated that the mysterious island setting was actually purgatory. The first season introduced us to John Locke, who had been confined to a wheelchair until he miraculously regained the use of his legs following the plane crash. Even the name of the nefarious Dharma Initiative–a project of the Hanso Foundation, which seems to be conducting some form of experiment on the island–and the foundation’s logo–a variant on the bagua, a series of eight trigrams often surrounding a yin-yang sign and commonly associated with Taoism–have spiritual connotations.

As fans know, before Season 2 ramped up the collision between Locke, the man of faith, and Jack, the man of science, the show’s fundamental spiritual disputes really hadn’t crystalized. (And I’m not even going to get into Locke’s faith in fate vs. Mr. Eko’s biblically-based faith.) That’s where executive producers, Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse come in. Creator J.J. Abrams may have given “Lost” its body, but Lindelof and Cuse have given the show a soul.

According to Entertainment Weekly’s “Best of 2005” Issue, the Jack vs. Locke storyline was inspired “by the worldviews of Lindelof (Jewish and empirical-minded) and Cuse (Catholic and willing to leap beyond logic).” EW continues:

“The collision of our perspectives plays out on the show,” says Cuse, who cites [C.S. Lewis’ “Narnia”] as one touchstone for the kind of fantastical otherworld “Lost” is trying to create. “Both of us are searching for the answers to the bigger questions of how you lead a meaningful life, and we’ve chosen to use the show to explorethose questions.”

Narnia? So that’s where the polar bear came from…. (Yes, yes. I know all about Walt’s comic book.)

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