A pale full moon illuminates great swathes of night cloud, spectral and voluminous. One mighty behemoth is shaped like a giant starfish, it's ethereal tendrils stretching out across a silent immensity. Beyond flicker tiny ice white stars, the engine rooms of creation, so distant yet so powerful. Some gaze up into such skies and see inky darkness, cold and indifferent; yet I see life, I glimpse the unseen atoms that bind us all, the brethren that for us coalesced into things that live, that evolve, that imagine and ask questions of themselves. Indeed ask yourself, how great are we? How improbable, how majestic? So many drift through life with no sense of their inner grandeur or any wonder of what is around them. How impoverished is that? Not to understand what we are, or have at least some grasp of how we came to be?
I am stood in my tiny residential garden, the universe an immense dome above me, it's magnitude beyond the grasp of my tiny mind. Yet somewhere out in the dark splendour, some vast eons ago the processes that would lead to my becoming took shape. Only now are we beginning to grasp our true origins, the truth about how we emerged from, quite literally, nothing. From the quantum conundrum that even now our most advance theoretical physicists are trying to fathom, something happened that set the whole show in motion. No voice in the dark booming "Let there be light"; no place for tawdry fairy tales in the real scheme of things. Yet the truth, when we finally lock it down, will surely yield us facts so spectacular that we will marvel all the more.
Our planet is one of billions; our galaxy one of billions. Whilst rare, it grows increasingly likely that we are not alone amidst the void. Somewhere out there perhaps wander fellow lonely travellers, denizens in this universe. I wonder; are they conscious as we are? Do they yearn, wonder, caress, nurture?
Somewhere in the world tonight a young couple are kissing under the same moon as the one I stare at now, starting another journey in a life consisting of many journeys all leading to many destinations. Their story will be unique, as is your own. But please I implore you, when you look up into the night sky, and it affords you a glimpse of its essence, don't be so quick to look away. Stay outside for a while; put on a coat to keep you warm. Look upwards, look beyond, and seek to connect yourself with the greatest story of all. Those stars, those planets, the grass beneath your feet. All the same material, just formed in a different way.
Don't break this great connection too quickly. The world will still be waiting when you return.