I suggest a different interpretation of the words - remember it's been tranlated, transposed, and transcribed, so, try this on: "I EMBODY the way the truth and the life, unless you partake of this approach to the infinite, you won't get there" I believe the lord Jesus was saying "I am the universe".
Of course, you are entitled to your opinion, but what Jesus said was exactly what he meant. The many other places in the Bible which echo, expand, and explain his statement leave no room for the interpretation you have applied to his words. Not everything in the Bible is symbolic and open for individual interpretation.
As for the idea that the Bible has suffered from the ravages of time and translation, well, it isn't true. I don't want to go into the vast amount of study that has been done on this topic by men well-schooled in such study, but I do want to say that they have determined that present-day translations are extremely accurate. Many thousands of ancient extant manuscripts make this determination possible.
Practice hard. Practice often.