Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God;
   and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
      He that loveth not knoweth not God; for
            God is love.


    God is love;
        and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God,
           and God in him.

the first epistle of John

How much literal truth is there in the various stories contained in the collection of texts that we call the Bible? Even the most ardent evangelical minister, if he or she is to be honest, would have to answer, “I don’t know.” What we have is a collection of texts, written down over the span of hundreds of years by several dozens of people, none of which was written quite at the time period that it purports to describe, and much of which obviously consists of allegorical parables. … translation.

Even the familiar Biblical term, “God” does not come to us as a derivative of any word used by the authors of the Bible. It is derived from the German term, “Gott,” which originally referred to the pagan deities of northern European mythology.

In Christian scriptures:

Name of God in Exodus: I AM that I AM

Apostle Paul’s comment quoting Greek philosophers: “In God we live, move, and have our being.”

John: God is Love

Simplistic interpretation. Especially in instant gratification world.
Salvation for the individual or harmony for society is not to be had by a simple set of words or acknowledgment of a belief or doctrine as if it were a magic formula. “Sinner’s prayer” or whatever the Muslim equivalent
Religions and their corresponding rituals and scriptures offer an often useful cultural context. But principles are universal.
Golden Rule follows directly from the nature of man. Can be derived from human needs and human compassion. Still have base desires. Need to overcome. Cannot let run rampant in a civilized society.
Higher aspirations vs. lower desires. Requirements of a just and organized society.
In the same way that the familiar form of a very human-like entity is often the easiest thing to come to mind in contemplating the idea of “God,” our concepts of many aspects of spiritual teachings and precepts often take on the most familiar, easiest to imagine, and, therefore, the most shallow and simplistic forms. Especially in our modern industrial world of instant gratification, we often most easily accept the easy solution, the “quick-fix,” the instruction that says, “just do this one thing and you’re good to go.” And so, all over the country, preachers sell from the pulpits, and people buy, the instant-gratification version of spirituality.
Many preachers are quick to use the famous “There is a way which seemeth right …” quote from Proverbs when they want to promote the supposed superiority of their “way” over someone else’s “way,” but they are also just as quick to jump to the most superficial interpretation of what their same sets of text say about requirements for “grace” and “salvation” when they are trying to gather and satisfy a large audience. And while the self-same preachers insist that “you must not pick and choose Biblical passages,” and that you need to take the entire Bible as a whole, they also seem at the same time to be adept at skimming right past certain key teachings that repudiate their own one-dimensional reading of what is meant.
It’s too bad that such kinds of preachers, in a number of different religions, have somehow gained the label of “fundamentalist” because, in reality, understanding the actual fundamentals of spirituality requires a deeper view of Life and the Universe than can be found in the dead-letter reading of selected passages that indicate the “quick fix” way to “salvation.”

American Transcendentalism
Ralph Waldo Emmerson
Henry David Thoreau
Spirit of Life
Eclectic … include Samuel Clements (Mark Twain) … etc. etc.
see the Spirit of Life weaving its way through the inspiration behind all literature just as it is pervasive in Nature.