In the absence of a clear direction, a computer will freeze. It will cease to function and wait for direction from a higher power. In contrast, a human being, in the absence of clear direction, tends to make some sort of decision. The basis of that decision has been studied since humans attained the power of reason. The last place you're going to find an answer is here. It's just an interesting issue to ponder.
Reading the Bible and listening to angry evangelists would have you believe that the fatal flaw in humans is the fact that they actually make decisions in the face of a dearth of information. I think the real problem is that people are made to feel that their future actions can have an affect on their past. Thus if you feel guilty enough and do enough penance, it'll erase the past. Or, in other words, you are a good person until you screw up, at which point, you lose any right to feel control over your own life, and owe your salvation to a higher power.
At this point, my only contribution to this debate is not new, but makes a lot of sense to me. It's not how you handle the past, but how you react to your past and how you use that to guide your future. A statement like that only leads to more questions, but at the end of the day, at least helps me to frame them in a way that makes sense and helps me move forward.