The [Buddhist] Scripture is no more nor less than the finger pointing to the moon of [Divine Truth]. When we recognize the moon and enjoy its benign beauty, the finger is of no use. As the finger has no brightness whatever, the Scripture has no holiness whatever. The Scripture is religious currency representing spiritual wealth… [It] is a mere substitute. What it stands for is of paramount importance. Those who spend most of their lives in the study of the Scriptures, arguing and explaining with hair-splitting reasonings, and attain no higher plane in spirituality, are religious flies good for nothing but their buzzing about the nonsensical technicalities. –Kaiten Nukariya
“Arguing and explaining” Holy Scripture “with hair-splitting reasonings” that stifle spirituality rather than nurture it is a challenge shared by many who claim a religion.
Religion is like scaffolding. Throughout history, people from all faiths in every corner of the world have climbed it for only two reasons: to get closer to the Divine or to control those still on the ground.
The trouble with religious doctrine – especially the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran – is that each claims to be the one and only way. To me this isn’t feasible, because though portions of each were surely written by those who climbed to get closer to God, others undoubtedly came from those who climbed to control. Though we’re given discernment to help us decide which is which, many have become complacent and are content believing anything religious leaders tell them, effectively absolving themselves of personal responsibility for spiritual health. The only “leaders” who seek and accept this responsibility are those who climbed to control.
To call any Holy Scripture “the inerrant word of God” is to deny human imperfection while at the same time giving these “leaders” the justification to direct religion and its followers as they see fit. Because their agendas are often self-serving (be they political, economic, to propogate personal bias, and/or to bolster their egos) these individuals are ill-equipped to bring anyone closer to God.
If you spend your days preaching and debating the small details of Holy Scripture to justify “hating the sin” or something similar, you haven’t climbed to reach God – you’ve climbed to control.