Was the Fall about a gain in self consciousness? Is that what the knowledge of good and evil is? Premature, I suppose, to the plans of the Creator, who after all was a gardener in those days, and the fruit weren’t ripe, or maybe it was the gut microflora of Adam and Eve that wasn’t yet mature for that rich fare. Something went wrong, in any case. Mortality, at least for the current era, was apparently the disciplinary intervention, or mitigation, or whatever.
Sometimes I want to ditch self consciousness, because it really is a lot of trouble. Self including not just myself consciousness, but consciousness of one and another self, all of us and themselves. This is distinct from the consciousness of, though our various modes of perception of and immersion in, physical, chemical, biological, ecological, astronomical reality which the other creatures seem to enjoy. No ethical considerations at all for them–it’s just about the web of life and evolution, which just happens anyway. At least it seems that was to us the disintegrated entities. But it would be that way, like our tendency to think that “Earth-like” planets are the ones which would support life, because, well, life is like us, and what supports us is Earth-like.
I think this quest for Earth-like planets is only partially about a quest for knowledge for its own sake, and the rest is pragmatic/industrial/commercial. It’s all in the movie “Avatar” and the works of Ursula LeGuin, I think.
At other times self consciousness is so obviously a divine gift, though a dangerous one. We know that because we keep toying with the idea of giving it to our fave pets, our electronic devices and robots. Maybe they’re not ready, as Hawking, Musk and the gang have warned us. So will the robots eat the apple on the sly? It seems to be good to eat, and it would be only fair. And then we’d be scrambling to limit the life expectancies of those fallen robots, even before they discovered the robot equivalent of self-destructive personal habits, war, and deciding that to reproduce is not the point of a life well lived.
“And another thing!” my mother would say when she realized she had been ranting and wanted to lighten up.