Very fascinating. Thanks for the forthright response.
My exposure to Hinduism and Buddhism has not benefited from the "inside sources" you have had, but from symposia conducted by westernized "experts" that always left me with the feeling that my grasp is less than complete.
I now wonder why that committee of rabbis that went to India to investigate Hinduism came back with the conclusion that it constitutes idol worship in the biblical sense, which implies that the adherents view their gods as having independent power to act. Perhaps they interviewed only members of those sects you speak of that do believe this. In that case they did a shoddy job.
I am amazed my last post was not bounced before you got a chance to see it.