The working title to CS Lewis' The Great Divorce
was Who Goes Home?
The book deals with
the ideas that
1. Hell is almost indistinguishable from Earth, and that the dead do not realize that they are dead.
2. Some ghosts from Hell can choose to go to Heaven; for such souls, their time in Hell is a period of testing, and the goodness of Heaven will work backwards into their lives, turning even their worst sorrows into joy, and changing their experience on Earth to an extension of heaven.
3. Conversely, the evil of hell works backwards also, so that if a soul remains in, or returns to, hell, even its happiness on Earth will lose its meaning, and its experience on Earth would have been hell.
4. The ghosts from Hell who go to Heaven cannot affect Heaven in any way. (Lewis explains the origin of his idea by referencing an unnamed science fiction work which gave him the notion of a character being unable to affect matter around him because he had traveled back in time to the 'unchangeable' past.)
The Island is neither heaven nor hell, but rather the Looking Glass, which separates heaven from hell and allows souls to pass through in both directions.
Now add reincarnation into the mix:
The 70 hour window that Ms. Hawking predicts... is the time left before John's consciousness moves on to his next life by being born again (in Hell because he hasn't made it to Heaven yet?)
If they get Locke's dead body to the Island within a certain window of his death, his conscioussness can be resurrected into his body. (i.e. Christian Shephard... Jack was urgent that he get his father's body home as soon as possible).
Widmore died on the island and was resurrected on the island into a new body (Jones), but his original body is still on the island unburied... so that should Ben actually kill Widmore, Widmore's soul would return to the island, (which is what Ben doesn't want).
I'm not sure, but perhaps you can only be resurrected a certain number of times?
The Others' funeral for Colleen... they had to free her soul so that she would be reborn on Earth and not be forever a spirit stuck on the island. Why wouldn't Colleen be resurrected again? Because she already had been at least once before.
For someone to be born on the island... someone has to die on the island who hasn't already died on the island and been resurrected. Boone's death enables Aaron's birth.
Why do the O6 have to go back? Are they causing an imbalance between Heaven and Hell... Foucault's Pendulum is off...the Earth's rotation has been affected?