In my view, "Buddhas" are symbols for human potential. The historical Buddha was a human being. A Buddha or Ancestor (Jesus or any Saint in any religion) dies and ... century by century ... those in the religion (looking from afar at what those attainments actually were on the part of their "religious heroes" and with need to depict their power) start to imagine, fantasize and exaggerate the wonderful nature of the teacher and teaching into something super-human
. What was merely "Great, Profound and Wonderful
" must become "Mysterious, Wondrous and (often) Ridiculous
". The result is called an "hagiography
A hagiography is a biography, usually of a saint or saintly person, and usually written to idealize their life or justify their sainthood. In other words, a hagiography is usually a positive presentation of a life, rather than an objective or critical biography. When using a hagiography as a research source, the purpose and style must be taken into consideration, as the writer probably omitted negative information and exaggerated or even created positive information about the subject of the hagiography. Lives of the saints are typically hagiographies.
That does not mean that his teachings were not wondrous, that does not mean that there are not true miracles of liberation in this practice ... It just means that people may be looking for miracles afar when they are right before our eyes.