I remember a story that I heard/read long ago that Ramakrishna Paramahamsa told Swami Vivekananda that what you are seeing before is the same Rama and Krishna who incarnated earlier.

Is it recorded in any biographies? If yes, is it true in advaitic sense that everything is one? Or did Ramakrishna Paramahamsa meant he was incarnation of Vishnu? Any other instances where he said similar thing?

  • " If yes, is it true in advaitic sense that everything is one?" What do you mean by everything is one here?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 7:25
  • 1
    Related or duplicate of Where is it written that Ramakrishna Paramahamsa was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 7:27
  • @TheDestroyer I meant 'everything is Brahman'. Here I am asking if RamaKrishna himself said that he is incarnation. It is not a duplicate.
    – user16895
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 7:48
  • Still i'm not clear with that. How is "everything Brahman" related to Avatar?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 8:13
  • @TheDestroyer since everything is Brahman. I can say I am Vishnu who is saguna brahman.
    – user16895
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 10:00

2 Answers 2


Yes; on his deathbed, when he sensed Vivekananda still had doubts:

Page 430:

the thought flashed across the mind of Noren, “He has said he is Divinity-Incarnate. If he now says in the midst of the throes of death, in this terrrible moment of human anguish and physical pain, ‘I AM the God Incarnate', then I will believe " It was but a dare he had ventured to make in the inmost recesses of his own mind, without thinking for one single moment as to the results. Suddenly the Master turned towards him and summoning all his energy, said, “O my Naren, are you not yet convinced He who was Rama and Krishna, is now Ramakrishna in this body, not, however, from the standpoint of your Vedanta, but literally so"

  • 2
    Thanks. Swamiji regarded as the Incarnation of the Divine Mother Kali which again prove to His followers that Vishnu and Shakti are One.
    – user17294
    Commented Feb 7, 2019 at 13:20

Other than above answer, Sri Ramakrishna also talked about himself as an incarnation of God. It's recorded in Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna by Mahendranath Gupta.

Also many other devotees had vision of Sri Ramakrishna as God incarnated.

  1. Master (Sri Ramakrishna) about himself AND How God incarnates Himself on earth :

Master: “Well, after seeing all this, what do you feel?”

M (Mahendranath Gupta): “I feel that Christ, Chaitanyadeva, and yourself—all three are one and the same. It is the same Person that has become all these three.

Master: “Yes, yes! One! One! It is indeed one. Don't you see that it is He alone who dwells here in this way.

As he said this, Sri Ramakrishna pointed with his finger to his own body.

M: “You explained clearly, the other day, how God incarnates Himself on earth.”

Master: “Tell me what I said.”

M: “You told us to imagine a field extending to the horizon and beyond. It extends without any obstruction; but we cannot see it on account of a wall in front of us. In that wall there is a round hole. Through the hole we see a part of that infinite field.”

Master: “Tell me what that hole is.”

M: “You are that hole. Through you can be seen everything—that Infinite Meadow without any end.”

Sri Ramakrishna was very much pleased. Patting M.'s back, he said: “I see you have understood that. That's fine!”


M: “Among all the forms God chooses for His lila, I like best His play as a human being.”

Master: “That is enough. And you are seeing me.”

~Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna - Tuesday, July 28, 1885

  1. Devotee's vision :

Nistarni, the wife of Navagopal Ghosh, was a devout woman. After her marriage, she went with her husband to see the Master at Dakshineshwar. A temple cat had some kittens. The guards had been hitting them and the mother cat had taken shelter in the Master's room with her kittens. One day the Master asked Nistarni to take them to her home. She agreed. Pleased, the Master blessed her, saying: "You saved me from a great responsibility. By Mother's grace, may all good attend you and may you have the vision of your Chosen Deity." Her Chosen Deity was Ramachandra. One day while repeating the mantra, she had a vision of Lord Rama. Immediately she bowed down. And when she was taking the dust of his feet, she saw the form of Ramakrishna in place of Ramachandra. The Master smiled and said: "Now you know who I am."

~How to Live With God by Swami Chetanananda - page.43

  1. Devotee's vision :

Gauri-ma was living at Balaram's house in Calcutta. One morning she began her daily worship of Vishnu as usual, by bathing the stone image of the deity. She was about to place it on the altar when she saw two live human feet there, without a human body. At first she thought that it was an optical illusion, but upon observing the altar carefully again and again she saw only those two human feet. Gauri-ma was frightened. The hair of her body stood on end, and her hands started trembling so much that she dropped the image. She took the image from the floor and put it back on the altar. She repeated the mantra, and while offering tulsi leaves upon it, she again saw those two live feet. She lost outer consciousness and fell to the floor.

She remained in an ecstatic mood that day and the following night. The next morning, Balaram and his wife took her to meet the Master (Sri Ramakrishna) at Dakshineshwar. When she bowed down to the Master, she saw the same two feet that she had seen on the altar the previous day. She was overwhelmed with joy and astonishment. Sri Ramakrishna just smiled.

~How to Live With God by Swami Chetanananda - page.31

  1. Devotee's vision :

Atul Chandra Ghosh saw the united form of Radha and Krishna in Sri Ramakrishna. Akshay Kumar Sen described this episode in his book “Sri Ramakrishna Punthi”. Swami Abhedananda wrote in his autobiography:

“Atul, Girish’s brother, was a great devotee of the Master. He could ascertain the condition of a patient by checking his pulse. For that reason, the Master would sometimes call for him. Once at 10:00 pm, he [Atul] came from Baghbazar and found that the gate of the Cossipore garden house was closed. He knocked at the gate many times, but got no response. Still he continued knocking. At last Brother Gopal heard the sound and opened the gate. Atul went upstairs to see the Master. There he saw that Shashi was fanning the Master and Latu was sleeping on the other side of the room. Seeing Atul, Shashi handed the fan to him and went downstairs to rest. The Master was then sleeping, covered by a shawl.

After a while, Atul had a wonderful vision: He saw Krishna on the right half of the Master’s body and Radha on the left half. Seeing this united form in the Master, Atul thought that it was a hallucination. In the meantime, Sharat entered the room to serve the Master. Then the Master turned his face to Atul and asked: “Hello, how long have you been here? You go downstairs now and take some rest. Sharat will be with me”. Amazed, Atul went downstairs. He never forgot that united form appearing in the Master".

~How to Live With God by Swami Chetanananda - page.38-39

  1. Devotee's vision :

The Master's (Sri Ramakrishna) nephew Ramlal told the following story:

A young Ramait monk in Ayodhya had a vision that Lord Rama had again incarnated on earth, somewhere in the East. In order to see him, the monk started on foot eastward from Ayodhya. When he reached Bengal he heard that there was a great saint named Sri Ramakrishna near Calcutta. He finally found Dakshineswar after a long search and asked someone, "Where is Ramakrishna Paramahamsa?" The people of the Kali temple told him that the Master had just passed away a few days before. Hearing this heartbreaking news, the monk exclaimed: "What! He passed away? I have come from Ayodhya on foot [nearly 1000 miles] just to see him. I went through so much hardship to get here and he has left the body!" The young monk began to sob.

The manager of the Kali temple offered him some food from the temple store, but he refused it. He went to the Panchavati and stayed there for two or three days without eating. One night Sri Ramakrishna appeared before him and said: "You have not eaten anything for several days. I have brought this pudding for you. Please eat it." He fed the monk and disappeared.

The next morning I [Ramlal] went to the Panchavati and found the monk full of joy. I asked: "What happened?" Then he told me everything. He even showed me the clay bowl in which the Master had brought the pudding.

(Ramlal preserved the bowl for a long time, but later on it was somehow destroyed.)

~How to Live With God by Swami Chetanananda - page.43

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