Our "elegant" universe--full of divine purpose (Carl Sagan; Maxwell)
The late Carl Sagan, who communicated effectively about science and the universe, perceptively observed that
in some respects, science has far surpassed religion in delivering awe. How is it that hardly any major religion has looked at science and concluded, ‘This is better than we thought! The Universe is much bigger than our prophets said—grander, more subtle, more elegant. God must be even greater than we dreamed’? Instead, they say, ‘No, no, no! My god is a little god, and I want him to stay that way.’ A religion, old or new, that stressed the magnificence of the Universe as revealed by modern science might be able to draw forth reserves of reverence and awe hardly tapped by the conventional faiths. Sooner or later, such a religion will emerge.
Latter-day Saints certainly should not lack reverence and awe—especially when we contemplate the universe in the context of divinely revealed truths. Yes, the cosmos “as revealed by modern science” is “elegant,” as Sagan wrote. But the universe is also pulsating with divine purpose, so our awe is “added upon,” providing even greater reasons for reverential awe regarding “the magnificence of the Universe”!