A friend of mine has loaned me the full set of Battlestar Galactica episodes. All the hooplah about the Cylons having "souls" as much as the Humans do merits much thought as today in "our" world, many humans believe that other life forms that are not human do not possess a soul. Scientifically speaking of course, there is no evidence of a soul, anyhow. Instead the nearest topic that could be applied would be that of "senescence" - the ability of an organism to be aware of itself as an independent entity and aware of it's thoughts as being localized to itself. Not a textbook definition, but accurate nonetheless.
My purpose here is not to say whether one is right or wrong in believing either which way, but to merely report of memories that I have of both dreams and thoughts about life as an entity other than human.
When I was around the ages of 3-6 I had dreams and daydreams of seeing beings that resembled old cathode ray tube televisions complete with the rabbit ear antennas. There legs were like tripod leg stands. And I'm not quite sure, but there may have been a humanoid face in the screen. Yeah, I know it's a major feature not to be sure of, but nevertheless, the idea remains the same.
It all goes back to the old question - what does it really mean to be human. And, are there other entities than human that are truly capable of the emotions? If we do happen to meet any silicon based life form, how will we treat them?
Is it necessarily logical that humans were the ones that created the machines. What if the silicon based life form were able to naturally evolve into the same type of intelligence who could then create carbon based life forms and they could create a more "rudimentary" form of silicon based life in which if the developed would turn in the highly sophisticated "Cylons" of Battlestar Galactica.
OK, the Ambien is beginning to kick in and I had better stop now, before I write something that I won't be able to explain.
Kudos to Battlestar Galactica --- Great Frakin' show