It has been interesting to me to see the same thing in yoga. People very committed to their practice--even top historical yogis--can have extremely conflicting ideas.
And so I've been thinking about that. Churches are adamant about doctrine. And yet there are always differences...causing division, after division, after division. And we ignore that. We push the divisions aside as if they were unavoidable. As if we aren't culpable in the state of the way things are because we are right.
We don't have a lot of Jesus's prayers recorded, but some of them are. In the 17th chapter of John it recalls Jesus asking: "Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. "
We don't have a lot of one-ness going on.
I wonder if that is because we are seeking one-ness around the wrong things. Clearly it is human nature to disagree about the abstract because we see it all through our own experience. We can point to Scripture (which I happen to believe is authoritative) but the way we see those scriptures can be so different (I don't happen to find us authoritative.). Why would God leave truth in the hands of such a faulty system?
It occurs to me that we may have messed this up. What if truth is more basic than this? What if when Jesus says "I am the way, the truth and the life..." He isn't referring to the facts about Him, He is referring to Himself.
Love and sacrifice--universally understandable experiences regardless of your geography, faith or circumstances--produce unity rather than division. Humility (and there is nothing more humble than God taking human form) also produces one-ness.
It occurs to me that we get lost in the words that are written and lose the big story those words tell. That a God who created the universe wanted to be with us enough that He clothed Himself in humility and loved enough to sacrifice.
How could we find that as truth that and do so little of it? We are called to so much more than a set of ideas written in words.