Andrew C. Backus, Ph.D. has been a minister, a teacher, a scientist, and always a musician. And a student of being alive:
Life is full but finite. Consciousness is the greatest gift, but a curse, as well. It is truly the knowledge of good and evil — and death, the ultimate encouragement and discouragement at the same time. I wake up every morning amazed and thankful at being alive, yet saddened.
We believe, against all evidence, that our souls are immortal. To prove that, we commit heinous acts as well as heroic deeds. We are driven to stand up out of the mud (Ernest Becker). And it works, temporarily.
The only question, then, is how to remain heroic and not slip to the easier, dark side. The latter is our genetic heritage. The former our cultural heritage. It is a battle between the two. And if there is a galactic community out there waiting to see if we can fit in, the decision hinges on the outcome of that battle — not to mention our survival.
Unfortunately, the hardware/software analogy is none too accurate.