Cristiano Ronaldo caused an international stir a couple of years ago, when he posted a picture of himself outside his Madrid home posing with his foot next to a Buddha head. Although to many, this seemed like an innocent pose, many Buddhist fans responded angrily.
“Hey dude but its basic knowledge that you cannot put your foot on a religious statue,” one follower wrote.
“This is not cool at all man. I know ur not Buddhist but plz respect for other religions,” added one disappointed fan.
In Ronaldo’s defense, the Knowing Buddha Organization of Thailand, says “these kinds of incidents happen all the time, not because individuals mean to intentionally disrespect Buddha’s image, but due to a lack of understanding what Buddha’s image represents. Buddha’s image has been so commercialized in the past few decades, that most people have forgotten that Buddhism is a religion and Buddha’s image belongs in a temple, not as decoration in Hotels, Bars, Spa’s or people’s homes.” says the KBO Foundation.
To awaken the world to the right way to treat the Buddha, The Knowing Buddha Organization focuses on educating through media, billboards, events, campaigns and working with individuals and companies previously unaware that they mis-using the Buddha’s image.