If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.
For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.
Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.
If we long to believe that the stars rise and set for us, that we are the reason there is a Universe, does science do us a disservice in deflating our conceits?
But the fact that some geniuses were laughed at does not imply that all who are laughed at are geniuses. They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright Brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown.
A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism.
We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces.
Our species needs, and deserves, a citizenry with minds wide awake and a basic understanding of how the world works.
Our posturings, our imagined self importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark.
In our obscurity in all this vastness there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us.
It's been said that astronomy is a humbling and, I might add, a character building experience.