> Mathematics is a religion, you say? How can the derivation from a set of
axioms and rules to a number of theorems be a religion?
Because to avoid infinite regress (i.e., to get a theorem B from axiom A, you would need the axioms "A implies B", "(A implies B and A) implies B", "((A implies B and A) implies B) implies B)", and so on), you need to take the definition of "implies" from somewhere in your psyche. Philosophers argue endlessly about where this definition comes from. Mathematicians generally take it on faith.
You can certainly do mathematics without ever thinking about the religion or philosophy of it. But all of mathematics is built from logic and set theory, which I would say are religion.
>Mathematics says nothing about the nature of the Universe.
No, but as soon as you accept that the two in "I have two hands" is the same as the two that mathematicians use, you have indeed made a statement about the universe (and one that also requires faith!).