How "Lost" illuminates the future

I'm a huge fan of the television series, 'Lost,' so it seemed inevitable that I'd write about it at some point. Given the fantastic season finale last night, that time is now; and it really does relate to mediation. Honest.

Last night's episode of 'Lost' concluded season 3. All previous episodes were either set in the present day of the island inhabitants, or in the past of one or more of these characters. Last night changed all that. For the first time in the series, two of the main characters were shown living in the future and they were off the island. I suppose more astute viewers may have predicted this possibility, but it was definitely not something I saw coming. I never thought they'd get off that island. More importantly, though, I never thought we'd get a glimpse into the future lives of these complex characters. Unless it's a sci-fi series, most shows are either set in the present day or in the past. Having the characters in 'Lost' inhabit all three-- past, present and future--was shocking, exciting, intense, and perhaps even a bit disturbing.

When I meet with clients in mediation, particularly those going through a divorce, they often focus their discussion on the past. That's why they're paying me; to help them move through past conflict in a way that creates a relatively conflict-free future. Yet there are times when it's virtually impossible to get people to move off the topic of previous betrayals and transgressions. Often, even once they do take the conversation in a different direction for a while, they always end up backwards in time somehow.

That's why 'Lost' was so brilliant last night. It provided the viewers a glimpse into the future of these beloved characters, a wonderful opportunity that we could only experience as voyeurs. I wish there were some way to give my clients a glimpse into the future. 'Lost' creatively and dramatically crammed all sorts of life lessons into one 2-hour episode: be careful what you wish for, don't rush the present moment, you create your own fate.

If only we could all see the big picture of our own lives: past, present, and future. I wonder how that would affect our present-day decisions.

By Laura L. Noah
Published on
Send comments to: