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It seems that incarnations of Lord vishnu always worship Lord shiva. Is it because it is embarrassing to worship themselves?Or because shiva being their kula Daivam? Or Is it because shiva is the same self in another form? And why not worship devi Durga?

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Did Krishna or Rama ever worship Narayana/Vishnu?

Yes, it is mentioned in Vaalmiki Raamaayana: Ayodhyaa Kaanda: Sarga 6

शेषं च हविषस्तस्य प्राश्याशास्यात्मनः प्रियम्।

ध्यायन्नारायणं देवं स्वास्तीर्णे कुशसंस्तरे।।2.6.3।।

वाग्यत स्सह वैदेह्या भूत्वा नियतमानसः।

श्रीमत्यायतने विष्णो श्शिश्ये नरवरात्मजः।।2.6.4।।

English translation 1

The son of the king (Rama) partook the remainder of the havis seeking his own welfare. With a restrained mind and a vow of silence, he meditated upon Lord Narayana and slept along with Vaidehi on a wellspread bed of kusha grass in the auspicious temple of lord Visnu.

English Translation 2

Rama ate the remainder of clarified butter after finishing the sacrifice, which he performed for his own good, silently meditated on Lord Narayana with controlled mind and slept along with Seetha on a properly laid bed of Kusa grass in a splendid temple of Lord Vishnu.


It seems that incarnations of Lord vishnu always worship Lord shiva...

This is duplicate of Why do Lord Vishnu's incarnations worship Lord Shiva? post.


And why not worship devi Durga?

We already have a post ( Did Lord Rama worship Devi Ambika? ) on this.

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The questions are:

It seems that incarnations of Lord vishnu always worship Lord shiva.

Is it because it is embarrassing to worship themselves?Or because shiva being their kula Daivam?

Or

Is it because shiva is the same self in another form?

And why not worship devi Durga?


The subject matter is very complex. In order to understand the complexity of the issues involved, we have to understand the background also.

  1. The backdrop of Ramayana

  2. The interpolations that crept in the Ramayana.


1. Backdrop

The epic was composed for spreading the importance of Dharma.

a) Ramayana was composed in the post Vedic period and that too when Yajur Veda was given importance. Sri Rama was mentioned as yajurveda vinItasya.

Brahma appears as swayambhu, pitaamahaH and the Ruler of worlds in Ramayana.

तेषां केतुरिव ज्येष्ठो रामो रतिकरः पितुः |१-१८-२४ बभूव भूयो भूतानां स्वयंभूरिव सम्मतः |

Among those princes the eldest one Rama is like a flagstaff and a delight of his father Dasharatha, and he became acceptable to all beings like the self-created Brahma.

स चतुर्भिर्महाभागैः पुत्रैर्दशरथः प्रियैः || १-१८-३३ बभूव परमप्रीतो देवैरिव पितामहः |

King Dasharatha is highly gladdened with four of his highly fortunate sons like the Forefather Brahma with gods in heaven.

तेषामेवं प्रभावाणां सर्वेषां दीप्ततेजसाम् || १-१८-३५ पिता दशरथो हृष्टो ब्रह्मा लोकाधिपो यथा |

then their father Dasharatha is contented in respect of all of them who are such radiantly brilliant and potential princes, like Brahma.

b) Though he was described as boon giver, still Indra was described as Chief invitee of rituals (पुरु हूतस्य ), chief of Gods (विबुध ईश्वरम् ), as was described in the Veda.

ये हयाः पुरु हूतस्य पुरा शक्रस्य नः श्रुताः | अन्तरिक्ष गता दिव्याः ते इमे हरयो ध्रुवम् || ३-५-१४

"Of which horses we have earlier heard from our teachers telling that they belong to Indra, the Chief Invitee in Vedic rituals, they are these divinely green horses that now abide in the firmament, and definitely these must be Indra's horses

c) By the time Ramaayana was composed, deifying of Gods, instead of referring their names as epithets, had started. That was why appearance of Indra, in human form at Sarabhanga Ashrama was described.

d) Vishnu was described in Ramayana as upendra, retaining the position of Indra as Chief of gods.

e) brahma was described as elevator of Earth from waters, contrary to Puranas in which Vishnu was described so.

सर्वम् सलिलम् एव आसीत् पृथिवी यत्र निर्मिता | ततः समभवद् ब्रह्मा स्वयम्भूर् दैवतैः सह || २-११०-३

"All was water only in the beginning" from which element the earth was formed. After that, the self-existent Brahma with all the gods came into existence."

स वराहः ततो भूत्वा प्रोज्जहार वसुंधराम् | असृजच् च जगत् सर्वम् सह पुत्रैः कृत आत्मभिः || २-११०-४

"Thereafter, that Brahma, assuming the form of boar, caused the earth to rise from water and with his sons of pure soul, created the entire world."

f) The episodes in which Shiva or Vishnu appears as Supreme Gods are interpolations as described below.

g) There was no mention about Durga/Uma, etc, in Ramayana.

h) One of the member raised the aspect of mentioning of Sri Rama's worshiping Narayana or the word Narayana here and there in Ramayana.

गते पुरोहिते रामः स्नातो नियतमानसः | सह पत्न्या विशालाक्ष्या नारायणमुपागमत् || २-६-१

After Vasistha left, Rama took bath and meditated on Lord Narayana with undistracted mind along with his wide-eyed wife, Seetha.

In my opinion, it must be understood as an interpolation, because of the following reasons.

  • As mentioned above Ramayana was composed in the post Vedic period and Indra was still regarded as Chief of Gods. We have to remember that it was Indra, but not Brahma or Shiva, who gave back life to dead Vanaras at the request of Sri Rama after the great war in Lanka.

श्रुत्वा तु वचनं तस्य राघवस्य महात्मनः | महेन्द्रह् प्रत्युवाचेदं वचनं प्रीतिसंयुतम् || ६-१२०-११

Hearing the words of that great-souled Rama, Indra the lord of celestials endowed as he was with delight, again spoke the following words:

समुत्तिष्ठन्तु ते सर्वे हता ये युधि राक्षसैः | ऋक्षाश्च सह गोपुच्छैर्निकृत्ताननबाहवः || ६-१२०-१३

"Let all those monkeys and bears along with long-tailed monkeys, who have been killed in battle, by the demons and whose heads and arms have been severed, be alive and active again."

  • In many areas, Sri Rama was equalled to Indra. - शक्रस्य इव पराक्रमः

  • The word Narayana may not be found in Rig Veda

i) Coming to Krishna, it requires a separate narration. We have to remember that there was no mention about Durga/Uma or Ganapati in Bhagawad Gita also.

j) hence, worshiping of Vishnu/Narayana by Sr Rama cannot be expected.


2. The interpolations that crept in the Ramayana.

This issue was discussed by under various questions, and in a nutshell the answer is here.

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