Via Chet Raymo’s excellent Science Musings blog, a beautiful and thought-provoking essay by poet and essayist Nancy Mairs.
Summer 2006, Notre Dame magazine
If there’s anything the modern mind cannot bear, it’s the suspicion that no one is in charge. Individuals want to control their own destinies, and they expect assistance in the venture from a variety of social institutions. If a smooth course gets disrupted, someone can always be found to blame: the negligent parent, the inept schoolteacher, the corrupt cop, the sleazy manufacturer, the greedy lawyer, the power-hungry politician. Most would not lump God in with this unsavory assembly, but in attributing life’s accidents to Him, unconsciously they make of God a similarly remote and even inimical other (to whom they invariably refer with the masculine pronoun) just for the reassurance that Somebody is in control.
I’m pretty sure that the cosmos is meaning-less in any human sense of the word, without purpose or consequence. It is not for. It is. Yahweh, in Hebrew Scripture: I Am. What God offers is not significance for a chosen few but mystery for whoever chooses to see it, an inexhaustible source of devout astonishment.