The Temple is a location on the Island that is approximately a day and a half's walk from the Barracks. According to a conversation between Richard Alpert and Ben, the Temple was a location that the Others needed to get to during Ben's plan at the conclusion of Season 3 ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 1"). A temple complex was also seen in "This Place Is Death". For the sake of argument, it is described as separate to the temple mentioned by Ben. However, it is possible that Ben was referring to the same location. That said, "Ben's temple" is implied to be associated with a DHARMA station, while the temple seen in "This Place Is Death" appeared to be of a much earlier construction.
Temple from Ben's maps
According to Ben, the Temple is a sanctuary that he believed might be "last safe place on this Island" when the mercenary team arrived on the Island. Ben, fearing for Alex's safety, gave her a map indicating the location of the Temple with a DHARMA logo. When Karl requested that the survivors join them, Ben refused to allow it. He explained that it's "not for them." Before their emigration, some of the Others such as Ben and Richard knew of the Temple. Howver, it had not been revealed to all of them as Alex and Karl were unaware of it. ("Meet Kevin Johnson")
According to the map, the Temple appears to be northwest of the Barracks, not far from the coast. Ben also said that the Barracks is about a day and a half from Temple. ("Meet Kevin Johnson")
Temple from "This Place Is Death"
When Jin time-travelled to 1988, he met Danielle Rousseau and her science expedition team. Jin agreed to take the group to the radio tower on the Island, but the group were interrupted when the Monster attacked them. One of the team members, Montand, was pulled by the Monster into a temple structure. The other members of the team, minus Danielle, went into the temple after Montand. Jin moved through time once more, finding the temple to be deserted. He later saw Danielle confronting Robert after she had killed Brennan and Lacombe. She accused him and the others of being "changed" by the Monster. Robert told her it was not a monster, but a security system guarding the temple. ("This Place Is Death")
The building itself consists only of two wall sections meeting at a corner under which the smoke monster dragged Montand. Each of these sections holds a false gateway crowned by a multi-storey finial. Stylistically it can be associated with the architecture of the Dravidian period, which took place in south India (600-1565 A.D.). The hieroglyphs carved over the temple appear to be rudely carved on the otherwise delicate and intricate decoration. In the Official Lost Podcast for This Place is Death, the producers hinted at the fact that the walls seen in the episode were merely an outer perimeter, and that one would need to hike past the walls to reach the actual temple itself.
Other details of the Temple's construction and function remain unknown, but as Rousseau had stated that Montand lost his arm in the Dark Territory, it can be assumed that the Temple is also within this area. This makes sense as the Monster is also known to be highly active in that region, supporting Robert's claim that it is there to guard the Temple.
- For fan theories about these unanswered questions, see: The Temple/Theories
- Who built the Temple, and when?
- Why is the Temple shown as a DHARMA logo on Ben's map?
- How does the Temple provide sanctuary?
- Why isn't the temple "for" the survivors?
- Why is it okay "for" Danielle Rousseau?
- Who currently has possession of the map to the Temple?
- Did the Others make it to the Temple?
- If so, what did they do there?
- Why was the Temple built?