National Public Radio, and other news sources, have reported on a study which indicates that most North Americans (and others) cannot see the Milky Way, the galaxy that we are part of, because there is too much artificial light (light pollution) in the sky. That’s too bad, for two reasons, at least.
One reason that it’s too bad is aesthetic. The Milky Way is beautiful. Although it’s not extremely bright, it covers so much of the sky that, when visible, it’s the most obvious feature of the heavens above us. If we can’t see it, we are deprived of one of the most beautiful and majestic aspects of the creation. For comparison, consider your favorite wild flower, or wild bird, or mountain, and suppose that, for some reason, you were never going to see this flower or bird or mountain again. You would be deprived, of some of the beauty that inspires and comforts you, and that’s too bad.
The second reason is that the observation of nature is one of the ways that God is revealed to us. (It’s not the only one, or the most important, but it’s one way.) Because the Bible says so.
Psalm 8 tells us that we should praise God, and also indicates that considering the heavens informs us about our place in the creation:
1 Yahweh, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens!
3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have ordained;
4 what is man, that you think of him?
What is the son of man, that you care for him?
5 For you have made him a little lower than the angels,
and crowned him with glory and honor.
6 You make him ruler over the works of your hands.
You have put all things under his feet:
Psalm 97 repeats the first theme:
The photo is from Pixabay, which allows such use.