LOST: Ab Aeterno... Translation Implications, Richard bonds with Jacob, and more!

This last episode of LOST, Ab Aeterno, definitely gets bonus points for being moving! Poor grieving Richard (or rather, Ricardo) trapped in the hold of that horrible ship, watching his fellow prisoners murdered and then experiencing the loss of his wife all over again, nearly had me in tears.

I'm a little burnt out on Lost right now (life has me preoccupied ;P), so this will be a short post and later I'll link to some of my favorite Losties like I've done in the past. One thing though... the translation of "Ab Aeterno," if you haven't already looked it up, is apparently "from the beginning of time" or "from eternity." The phrase can be found in Psalm 92 in the Vulgate... which corresponds to Psalm 93 in the English Bible. This wasn't the passage Ricardo was seen reading in prison (the passage in Isaiah about a prophet never being recognized as such in his home town. Though he might have been reading where Jesus quotes in it the New Testament. Did anybody notice?), but I figured it was worth mentioning just the same. Psalm 92 is very clearly discussing God, which would make the title of the episode more about the God-figure Jacob then about Richard himself. Some of the people on the message boards were complaining that Richard wasn't old enough to justify the whole "from the beginning of time" thing, so the Bible connection does serve to clear that point up at any rate.

Questions answered or clarified:

In a recent post I hypothesized that it would be revealed that Jacob was actually protecting the world from the island, and not the island from the world (see the section "My Best Prediction"). Jacob himself did indeed confirm for us that this is the case... at least as he sees it.

We know now when/how the statue was broken... but we still don't know when/how/why it got there. PS The ship crashing into the statue seemed kind of dumb to me. Like, 'oh we gotta have a reason for it to be broken... here, we can do that quick while the Black Rock is wrecking...'

Richard's role was to be Jacob's "representative" to the people Jacob brings to the island. In a way, I think he was kind of supposed to act like a prophet, steering the islanders in the way they should go and reminding them when their ways were faulty. That seems like it would fit with the Bible passage he was reading, right?

New or Continuing Questions:

Do y'all believe what was communicated in this episode, that Smoky-Dude is basically a manifestation of evil? I felt like this episode was trying to set up clearly the good/bad dichotomy, and I was curious as to whether y'all think we can trust that, or if it's just another rug that will be jerked out from under our feet later.

Smoky-Dude has wanted to get off the island for ages. When he says that Jacob took away his body and his freedom, does he mean that Jacob is responsible for the whole smoke-monster thing? So is Jacob the authority on the island, or was he too a man at one time, and there is some higher authority that made him into the island's keeper?

If Jacob can die... can Evil Smoky-Dude die?

Let me know y'alls thoughts! Also, there's a couple fun threads on the ABC message boards relating Lost to Greek and Egyptian mythologies, if you're interested in exploring some of those further. :) Come back later for updates and links to my favorite Losties, and keep me posted on any exciting theories you come across!

5 comments

  1. I did feel like there was that big aha moment when Jacob did the object lesson with the bottle. I also feel like the writers either want us asking which one is good or believing one is good so that they can go another direction.
    Other than that, I got little to nothing.

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  2. I loved this episode and cried like a little girl at the end when Ricardo was talking to his wife for the last time. I loved how Hurley came to his aide and I hope Richard stays on the right side whoever that may be.

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  3. I'm pretty sure that Richard was reading from the book of Luke. I tried to get the reference, but I couldn't catch it.

    I also was wondering what Jacob was before he took MIB's body. And if Jacob has his body, then whose body did MIB take?? And why couldn't he just stay in that body? Why did he move to Locke's???

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  4. Yep. It was Luke chapter four. I haven't taken the time to read that passage in light of this episode, but make no mistake it has significance of some sort. Even if it's just to shed a light on a small part of the episode.

    This episode was a confirmation for me that the MIB is indeed evil. Until last night I was still vacillating over the issue. I guess it came down to the fact that evil often tries to impersonate good in order to manipulate. And that is what the MIB always seems to be doing. Manipulating. Making promises he cannot and has no intention of keeping, appearing as one who has been wronged and being all self-righteous about it, and deflecting inquiries as to why he kills so many people.

    Once he deems them as someone who is useless, cannot be manipulated or eventually turned to his side, then he kills them.

    It just hit me that Jacob allowed himself to be killed. I don't remember him looking surprised when it happened. He saw Ben with the knife, right? He even provoked him by saying "What about you?" I wonder if Jacob thought he'd be more powerful once he was dead? And he can prove his point that man is not inherently corrupt, by dying and having a human take his place in protecting the Island. Hmmmm . . .

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