There is no doubt that as humans we have grown up in the ways we celebrate religion. In earlier days there were human sacrifices, animal sacrifices, rituals and rules about how one connects with God or Gods. The "religious" laws that were laid down as immutable in earlier times are very much out of date now. Kosher laws and Shariah laws are medieval in origin and irrelevant today even though they are blindly followed by some even today. We have grown past the need for Stain Glass windows to tell the stories of the Bible, because we can read. We have grown past the idea that Kings and rulers are divine and effectually God on earth, because we realize our equality as humans. As we progress in our understanding of this vast universe and all the people who populate the Earth the "ways" we worship God have changed.
The problem is that our concept of God has not changed. The fact that Deity is still mostly identified as male is just one old concept that is out of date. Some believe that God is a Lord who holds us over a pit of fire with a string. At any moment we can violate his love knowingly or unknowingly and he will cut that string sending us into eternal damnation. We paint God as a conditional, capricious super hero that has a very small tent and heavy cover charge in the form of "accepted belief" for all who want to gain his favor.
The most disturbing thing today is that out of the 7,095,217,980 people in the world, approximately 2,234,993,663 still believe in a God that demands human sacrifice. They believe that the love of an omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient Being is appeased only by the death of a human. Nothing else will get God's attention or curry his forgiveness except human sacrifice. These two and a quarter billion people say that no matter how loving your are, nor good you are, nor what level your sacrifice for others, you have no connection to God's love if you do not believe in human sacrifice. In other words, a real person has to die in a symbolic ritual in order for anybody to have the keys to Gods love, and it is the ONLY way.
The Jews who are credited with the concept of a single Omnipotent God instead of several who share power. That concept of a single God has been embraced by most every religion in the world aside from Hinduism, which is believed to be one of the oldest of religions. But the Jews stopped the practice of animal sacrifice thousands of years ago. Why do more than two billion people still embrace the practice of human sacrifice in 2015?
Why in the 21st century when we have seen so many ideas change, from the shape of the Earth and its journey around the sun, do we still believe in a God who requires human sacrifice? I can see no reason to accept this arcane concept of Deity. The erroneous concept of Deity remains if we believe even in the symbolic sacrifice of a human being. In one commandment this God tells us not to kill, but in order to enter his presence this same God requires a human sacrifice. I can't believe that an Omniscient God would break his own rule against killing. Is it okay to kill as long as God tells you too? Then the commandment should read, "Thou shalt not kill unless I say it is okay and then it is required."
I think it is time to realize that we have created God in our own image, not conversely. We give him human qualities such as anger, jealousy, revenge, holding a grudge and conditional love. Who can worship a God that is so humanly flawed? As the caterpillar is to the butterfly so are we to God. The caterpillar can not conceive of the butterfly nor understand that they are one in the same individual life. A human can not understand God because, like the butterfly, ITS entire Being is different than what we can comprehend from our caterpillar existence.
Ignorance is its own punishment. The only cure for spiritual ignorance is enlightenment. If we hold to outdated concepts of Deity we will never have that communion with the all powerful, which religion promises. I do not see it as heretical nor blasphemous to see Omnipotent, Loving, Omnipresence, Omniscience as greater than the qualities and personality of a human. In fact I believe that we are required to constantly adjust our understanding of God because the nature of God IS change. While the force will always and has always been the same, we have never come to a point where we can define God, and we never will. The eternal quality of God is progress, change and progressive movement toward a greater good. If one does not let his concept of God grow then God is an irrelevant relic. If we hold on to the past and worship a picture that no longer represents what Deity looks like, how will we know what Deity looks like now?
As you were,