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But I have heard people say that Buddhists worship idols.
Such statements only reflect the misunderstanding of the persons who make them. The dictionary defines an idol as "an image or statue worshipped as a god". As we have seen, Buddhist do not believe that the Buddha was a god, so how could they possibly believe that a piece of wood or metal is a god? All religions use symbols to express various concepts. In Taoism, the ying-yang is used to symbolise the harmony between opposites. In Sikhism, the sword is used to symbolise spiritual struggle. In Christianity, the fish is used to symbolise his sacrifice. And in Buddhism, the statue of the Buddha also reminds us of the human dimension in Buddhist teaching, the fact that Buddhism is man-centred, not god-centred, that we must look within not without to find perfection and understanding. So to say that Buddhist worship idols is not correct.