An Entertaining Theory: NASA Finds Buddha Statue on Mars

A Buddha statue on Mars! Just kidding, it's a rock. NASA

Have you heard the good news? NASA has found a statue of Buddha or some other godly figure on Mars. Or so various Internet venues would have you believe.

According to the website UFO Sightings Daily, "this photo alone should be enough to convince the United Nations that intelligent life once existed on Mars, but NASA doesn't want anyone to know the truth, because they will be asked to share the info and technology that they have found."

The image kind of looks like a human figure, in the same way that another weird rock on Mars looks like a floating spoon.

A floating spoon, er, rock, on Mars. NASA

This tendency to see a familiar figure or pattern where none exists is a common psychological phenomenon called pareidolia. It helps explain sightings of the Virgin Mary in a grilled-cheese sandwich and how people thought a kettle looked like Adolf Hitler (it promptly sold out on JCPenney's website after being highlighted by a Reddit user in May 2013).

Mars has been a particularly rich source of images to which people try to ascribe meaning. In NASA images of the red planet, people have also claimed to see evidence of rats, human faces and even Bigfoot.

An "enhanced and processed" version of the godlike statue on Mars. Paranormal Crucible / YouTube