One of the reasons atheism is probably becoming more common is because we can’t see the stars anymore. Its bad enough that most of us are so removed from nature with concrete walls and paved asphalt, but the artificial lights have put out the majestic order and heavens up above. There is something inherently moving about the heavens and I think it’s rooted in our desire to have that beautiful order within our hearts.
As we stare into that starry space and we wonder at its profound stillness and order we seek that same profound stillness in our hearts. Surah Ad Dhuha begins with “By the Morning Light and the And [by] the (still) night when it covers with darkness”. One of the explanations of these verses is that the morning light is the light of the face of the Prophet Sallallahu alayhi wasalam and the stillness is the stillness of the heart of the Prophet salallahu alayhi wasalam. We seek that stillness. Peace and Tranquility or Salaam and Sakinah. We glue on plastic glow in the dark stars on ceilings and buy nightlights in the shape of stars to calm our babies because there is an intrinsic calmness looking at stars.
But we’ve lost the sky and make jokes about how we can’t see any stars, but we don’t laugh at the disorder and agitation in our hearts. We blocked out the visibility of the order up there and we unknowingly cut off the order in us. We have modern technology, more connectivity than ever before and can even send satellites and people into space, but we lost the essence of being human. The ancients understood that this was all connected and it wasn’t all created in vain. This reality is what made Abraham, peace be upon him, to ponder and realize the reality that God exists.
So as the night sky has less and less stars, its our jobs to make sure we don’t put out the stars in our hearts and we take trips to remember what the night sky was supposed to look like.