Are rituals wrong numbers to God? (PK QA 1)
They can be, but what is the solution?
When we come to know that the number we are dialing is wrong, we seek the right number by consulting the appropriate authoritative book, the phone directory.
Similarly, we can find the right rituals by referring to the appropriate authoritative book, scripture. Scripture offers us much more than does a directory. By studying scripture, we can understand much more than just which ritual to perform – we can understand why to perform it and how it works.
When people don’t have scriptural knowledge, they can’t differentiate between proper rituals that actually connect them with God and improper rituals that have come up by concoction and become established as convention. That is, they can’t understand the difference between the right number and the wrong number. As such a state of affairs is widespread in today’s society, there’s an urgent need for systematic scriptural education.
But if instead we indulge, as does PK, in simplistic denunciation of all rituals based on naïve caricatures of some rituals, then that’s like rejecting all numbers as wrong because some numbers don’t work. Such caricature-centered derision of rituals is the surest way of keeping people perpetually disconnected from God, for it’s like telling people to never dial again for the fear of dialing a wrong number.