In reply, I had the following discussion with my friend and fellow roboticist, Carol Lynn Hazlett.
Reprinted here - so you can read it better...
Carol Lynn HazlettIt is quite a stunning project but why do the people think they need such an elaborate and expensive building to worship in? Wouldn't all the time and money be better used for hospitals, schools, libraries, day care and such things?
Thomas Whitfield Stodghill III"Wouldn't all the time and money be better used for hospitals, schools, libraries, day care and such things?" Carol Lynn Hazlett - This is (of course) the exact same question that many ask about the space program and the exploration of our universe. I believe we are fundamentally explorers. We are in search of answers. Grand endeavor - in what ever form - helps us in that quest. We learn not only about the unknown or unknowable, but about ourselves.
My reply really encapsulates my personal creed - Our questions drive us to do great things!