I came across this saying in Osho’s discourse series The Razors Edge…
“There are three hundred religions in the world. They are all different, but they all have one thing in common. That is the role of the priest as indispensable intermediary.”
He then goes on to talk about how the Catholic Church made it a sin to confess directly to God, and how the priest thus became more important than God himself in getting one’s sins forgiven. Which is a singular example.
Then it occurred to me that while Buddhism was the one religion in which one just focusses on waking up, the monks have been made into a kind of priesthood by their knowledge of the Pali canon and their path of practice. Often when one first comes to Buddhism one learns from a teacher who either is or has been a monk.
So are monks the indispensable intermediaries to Buddhist teaching?