I think this was probably the easter egg of the season. On the desk of the monk who ‘fired’ Desmond was a photo. The woman on the right was the crazy old white haired woman Ms. Hawkings that sold Desmond the ring and broke down all the cyclical time stuff.
I figure that pretty much has to be irrefutable evidence that there are forces at work pushing Desmond down a specific path.
God I love this show.