I'm very glad I did. Every inch of this museum celebrates evolution and its first champion, and every inch was designed to astonish visitors with the grandeur and majesty of the natural world. Here's a view of the main lobby, shot from above:
And a close-up of the beautiful statue of Charles Darwin:
I did not feel simply as if I was inside a place of learning, but a place of celebration, of devotion, of inspiration. (I got pretty teary-eyed.) And on top of it all, the place was filled with remarkable specimens. The jaw-bone of the first t-rex ever discovered! Fossils discovered by the remarkable Mary Anning herself! Taxidermied passenger pigeons and dodos! I just sort of stumbled around, babbling to myself.
When I got done with my tour (cut short because of the need to meet some great people), I felt uplifted and full of joy. I have to imagine it's how religious folks will feel tomorrow, when they celebrate the biggest day of their calendar. I'm just glad I can get that feeling from the beauty and wonder of science, and the minds and creatures that fill the world around me. And I thank places like the Natural History Museum for helping me tap into that wonderful emotion.