Thinking about this post by TheHeroOfCanton, and trying to reconcile some of my former (now partially debunked) theories with "LA X", it hit me: there might be a different significance to Jacob's Touch in "The Incident" than any of us thought. I keep thinking about the way he touched everyone, looking for differences. In a former post I posited the idea Jacob was touching the Losties to position them in Imaginary timelines where they would go after Jughead detonated. Obviously I was wrong about that, at least in part.
But as I go over those events again, the one thing which sticks out like a sore thumb is what happens when Jacob touches Locke: he seemingly comes back to life. That is the major difference between all of these instances. Does this mean the other touches had something to do with what happened to Locke?
Now, keep in mind the theory about consciousness which I've discussed before: in Lost it seems to be electromagnetic in nature. I know Constants haven't been mentioned much, but what if Locke is the Constant for everyone else Jacob touched? And what if it works in reverse for Locke, where he has many Constants? I keep thinking about the idea of Horcruxes in Harry Potter. What if each of these people had a bit of Locke stored in them, which Jacob could use to resurrect Locke in the Imaginary Timeline we're watching now? I realize Jacob touched most of them prior to any time they'd known Locke...except for the fact they'd all already existed with knowledge of Locke in the '70s, which their bodies - like antennae for their electromagnetic "souls" - had already possibly picked up.
My only real evidence for this is Locke's serene attitude in the new timeline. I'm not sure yet whether it seems he knows any of the people he's talked to so far, but he doesn't let on whether he does. When he says "My condition is irreversible" it doesn't seem he simply means his back. Is it possible he's accepted his condition now because he thinks the Island was a dream? What if, after Ben killed him, he woke up right where he fell after his father pushed him out the window? Could it be when Jacob says "I'm sorry this happened to you" he meant "I'm sorry you have to go through this again?"
So, if TheHeroOfCanton is right, and Jack fixes Locke's back, how is it that body ends up on the beach after the crash without a consciousness, ready for past-Locke to enter? Well, remember that dead body laying on the beach with Richard, Ilana and Ben everyone seems to be forgetting? Could it be the fixed body goes to the past, empty and awaiting Locke's first arrival on the Island, while Locke's consciousness - which has already lived through this once and remembers - goes to the future? Obviously I have no idea the mechanism which would do this; but is it possible that is how we'll get original Locke back?
Is that how he will become the answer to the question Ilana and Bram were so fond of asking last season?