I agree, and I do understand all that is written above (the long explanation), frankly. To me, it's generally inaccurate. On the mat, not only in theory. Total practicality.
My starting points have also been what has been before. I don't ignore or throw out anything. I take it in, and test it as best I can. As my Shamanic mentor says:
"Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the Ancient Ones -
seek instead what they sought."
That has been my Lifelong, daily path. I believe that that can work, for some people. Not everyone. Nor should it.
Besides, I haven't eaten white bread in years. Literaly, and figuratively.
George S. Ledyard
My own experience is, in the end paramount. It is all "inflation and obfuscation" if I can't reality it to some reality of my own. But my starting point is always to look at what has come before and try to understand it. You have thousands of years of development by people on the spiritual quest. There were people who spent every minute of their entire lives working on spiritual matters. That's where all this stuff came from. To ignore it or throw it out because initially I don't understand it, or it seems removed from my experience in the white bread, middle class suburbs of America seems to me the height of arrogance. What are the chances that, I am likely to rediscover, on my own, things that generations of teachers and students took to discover? I look to them first. By doing so it directs my attention towards what I might have missed if I hadn't already been looking. Then, it's all about my own practice and making the knowledge my own, not just something I read somewhere.