The value in studying any literature depends many factors. So far as interpreting such in the light of the author’s original intent, there lies the basic challenge of translation (if written in a language foreign to the reader). Then again, cultural differences must be accounted for and taken into consideration. The style of writing is key and important, for figurative and mythical literature, which may be of great value if read with that understanding, may prove detrimental to reality and reason if ascertained from a perspective of literal interpretation. Indeed there are several factors to consider when reading any literature which may affect or even hinder the value of such writings.
A key danger in reading any literature is to attach an assumed supernatural origin to its production. Although such may offer followers of a certain faith a feeling of security and consolation, the fact is that to elevate any given literature to a position of authority is a detriment to reason and worse yet has proven historically to obstruct reasonable behavior. Basic human values, so lacking in our ever confused world, are oftentimes denied due to a reliance upon the writings of humanity as being authoritative revelations from an alleged deity. Frankly, the danger lies not so much in the writings, as in the reliance upon such as a product of a supernatural source.
A departure from reason and rational behavior are all too often the effects of a reliance upon any set scriptures as genuinely supernatural. Even worse, and all too commonplace, are entire cultures based upon such thinking. When people depend upon what they perceive to be sacred scriptures for their beliefs and their values, they may very well depart from their own original nature which equipped them with an innate understanding of values and reason. In fact, the actual value of philosophical literature is whether such inspires the reader to return to and to live by their original, preconditioned values with which each person is born.
These are my thoughts on sacred scriptures.