LOST Theories - DarkUFO

Recently, I've been thinking about the Dharma Initiative; how did they discover the Island; why the Others permitted them to stay on the Island, and what their purpose is/was for the Island.

The simplest explanation, in my mind, is that one or more of the people responsible for the creation of Dharma, Mr and Mrs Gerald deGroot and Alvar Hanso, were in fact Candidates prior to founding the D.I.

If one of the founders had been a Candidate i.e. he/she had been selected by Jacob to come to the Island, it would be both a simple and believable explanation for how the D.I. initially found out about the Island and all the phenomena contained therein.

I believe that one of these Candidate-Founders learned of Jacob's goal, that of proving the goodness of humanity to MiB, and began to get frustrated with his laissez-faire attitude. We know from The Lost Experience that the three Dharma Founders that we are aware of, Karen & Gerald de Groot and Alvar Hanso, are all science-degree-holding intellectuals; so I'd like to take a moment to discuss some characteristics which I consider to apply to most intellectuals that I've met:


If we imagine that an intellectual who displays the aforementioned characteristics were to discover that the fate of the world rested on Jacob's seemingly test of humanity, how do we imagine them behaving? I certainly don't see them using their free-rein as Candidates to move around the Island living as nomads, waiting for something to happen a la 815; nor do I see them living in an ancient Temple, learning to make obscure poisons; rather I see them 'taking the Initiative' (pardon the obligatory pun) and applying their rationality, their scientific background, to fulfilling Jacob/MiB's criteria for salvation. Certainly, what we've seen of the Others so far has been, to say the least, a prohibitive atmosphere for any independent-thought.

So let's take a look at what I've imagined to be the seeds of the D.I. - An independent-minded Other (let's assume it's Karen de Groot for convenience) decides that she has had enough of Jacob's laissez-faire attitude and decides that she'll take saving the future of humanity into her own hands. Now, she won't be effectual on the Island as most of the Others have been indoctrinated into following Jacob's personality-cult; therefore she needs to leave the Island to build the task-force with which she'll prove humanity's worth to Jacob/MiB.

I'm going to take a leap of faith at this point and assume that Karen uses an FDW (of which there may be many, each with unique destinations, across all the Island's wells) to transport herself off the Island. She meets with Alvar and Gerald, notices an uncommon intellect in both of them and utilises their skills and resources to found Dharma. With Dharma founded, the first task is to find a mechanism which will allow them to locate the Island whenever they need to - enter The Lamp Post station. Having constructed the locator-station, Dharma begins to find rationale, open-minded intellectuals to sign up to travel to the Island, under the guise of furthering research on myriad fields, electro-magnetism, zoology, psychology etc. These people, the Goodspeeds, Radzinsky et al, are Dharma's idea of great human beings; they work to further the human race, they've devoted their lives to bettering themselves and perhaps most importantly to Dharma, they're peaceful. They'll come, but! they won't fight and they certainly won't kill, Mr Smoke Monster, sir.

So now we have our Dharma members moving to the Island, slowly building their base, constructing the stations and beginning their 'research'. How can the Others, the people who seemingly
overpowered a well-equipped United States Army brigade, using only bows and arrows, allow them to gain a foothold on the Island, no, their Island? Here's the beauty of this theory - they have to. As Candidates, it's the Dharma-founder(s)'s right to go about their lives as they wish, with the Others bound to acquiesce to their wishes, according to Jacob's rules. The Others have to sit by and watch Dharma assemble their operations as they're forbidden to go against the will of a Candidate. Presumably, a Candidate's authority is still intact when off-Island.

We've seen some of Dharma's experiments; the polar bear, the shark etc but the main thrust of their entire operation, in my opinion, is the button-pushing. Think about Jacob's analogy of the Island as a cork which keeps evil 'bottled up'; I imagine that the wine doesn't in fact represent evil, I believe that it instead stands for the massive, possibly cataclysmic amount of energy stored within the Island. Jacob and MiB seem, in my opinion, to be both required on the Island in order to contain this energy. I guess one could go so far as to say that keeping the EM energy contained is a 'two-man-job'. Not unlike pushing a certain button...

This seems to be the goal of Dharma, at least to my mind; where Jacob sees the task of containing the 'evil' as some sort of metaphysical challenge, Dharma believe that they can create a scientific proxy experiment, in the Swan, and use that to prove the goodness, the reliability of humanity. What Jacob, with his touch-of-destiny, and MiB, with his ability to transform into the dead and the smoke monster, do to contain the EM energy, so do the pairs in the Swan. I believe that Radzinsky's goal in drilling toward the source of the energy was to wrest some control of the phenomenon from Jacob/MiB and to give the responsibility to Dharma. 'Anything you can do, Science can do better,' might be one way to look at it. Another of the faith/science dualities ubiquitous in Lost.

I think that this kind of (here we go again) initiative is exactly what Jacob is looking for in the Candidates/Others - to move beyond blind adulation of a mysterious god-figure and to take some action, to prove that we, as a race, are worth saving.

If we look back at the characteristics which I have attributed to the Dharma founders, can we see any connection to other characters on the Island? How about the will-they-won't-they couple of the 1970's, the Widmore-Faradays? I can see certainly see Charles Widmore being on friendly terms with the Dharma founders, after all, we do know that he liked to go off the Island occasionally to father kids, to invest a few shillings here and there etc. and who better to provide some financial backing to him than Alvar Hanso, supposedly the funds behind Dharma? Perhaps he was banished due to this rapport with Dharma. Eloise's connection to Dharma, I believe, is evidenced by the fact that she appears to be the sole guardian of the Lamp Post station in modern-day Los Angeles.

Now, how to reconcile the Purge with my theory that one or more of the Dharma founders were a Candidate and therefore above reproach from the Others? My guess is that whichever of the Founders, be it Alvar, Karen or Gerald de Groot were Candidates, died in the late eighties to early nineties, thus removing the Dharma members' mandate to continue living on the Island. Once the Dharma-Candidate died, the Others were free to reclaim their Island. My guess is that the people in the swan were either not noticed by the Others, or more likely, allowed to continue their duty, as it had become paramount to the survival of the Island.

Well that about wraps up my theory, it may be miles off, it may contain some truth but I hope that it was interesting to read and I'd like to thank anyone who persevered. Looking forward to any
feedback/criticism (oh, there'll be criticism!) that you guys would like to bring up. I just thought that it was interesting to think about, especially given that we may not see any more Dharma scenes between now and the end of Lost. Something that I think is (sort of) interesting about this theory is that Dharma's origins may never be covered, with Darlton leaving it up to us to come up with our own theories about such a mysterious organisation. I'm aware that I didn't touch on the Valenzetti Equation but I don't believe that it's relevant anymore, more so an easter egg for us to think about during the earlier seasons, sort of a metaphor for the Jacob/MiB situation, a manipulate-the-pieces-correctly-or-face-the-consequences type of dilemma. Apologies if the formatting may be a little screwed-up.

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