The Mahabharata war has been given a date of around 3300 BC by back-tracing planetary positions from scriptural references (archeo-astronomy). The Ramayana is speculated to be anywhere between a few generations prior to the Mahabharata to a few millennia before. But is there any reference in the Puranas that affirms that both these stories happened in the current Yuga cycle we are living in? Because, do planetary positions repeat themselves in each Yuga cycle?


1 Answer 1


Yes, both the Ramayana and the Mahabharata happened in the present Vaivasvata Manvantara.. Let me address each one separately. Keep in mind that we're currently living in the 28th Kali Yuga of the Vaivasvata Manvantara.

  1. Ramayana: Here is what the Matysa Purana says, while enumerating various incarnations of Vishnu in the Vaivasvata Manvantara in chronological order:

    In the 24th Treta Yuga, the seventh manifestation was that of Sri Ramchandra, as the son of Dasharatha, and with Vasishta as the priest, to kill Ravana.

    As you can see here, the Vayu Purana says the same thing. And the Skanda Purana says the same thing here.

  2. Mahabharata: This excerpt from the Shatarudra Samhita of the Shiva Purana, in the course of describing the various Dwapara Yugas of the Vaivasvata Manvantara, says this about Krishna:

    In the twenty-eighth aeon of Dwapara, there will be Dwaipayana Vyasa, the son of Parashara, and the most excellent of Purushas [Vishnu] shall be born as Krishna with his one-sixth part, as the foremost of the sons of Vasudeva.

By the way, the Shiva Purana excerpt I linked to also describes an incarnation of Shiva named Lakulisha, whom I discuss here.

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    According to the text quoted above Ramayana happened in 24th Treta Yuga and Mahabharatha in 28th Dwapara Yuga. So that means Ramayana did not happen in the Treta Yuga immediately preceding the Dwapara Yuga of Mahabharatha, but happened 3 yuga cycles earlier. How does this explain the common characters between Mahabharatha and Ramayana? Also, Which Yuga/Manvanthra/Kalpa did King Muchukundhar(of Kalyavan vadham fame) belong to?
    – Naveen
    Commented May 9, 2015 at 0:25
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    @Naveen As far as how there are common characters in the Ramayana and Mahabharata, it's because there were some characters in the Ramayana who were blessed with long life or immortality. Rama blessed Hanuman with immortality, for instance. And Parashurama was blessed with longevity/immortality because of his Tapasya. Commented May 9, 2015 at 1:05
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    @sysinit Well, first of all, lots of incarnations of Vishnu live long past the Mahayugas they were born in; Parashurama is still alive, and so is Varaha, as I discuss in this answer: hinduism.stackexchange.com/a/2086/36 Also, Vishnu has appeared a lot of times in this Mahayuga, including Balarama, Krishna, Vyasa, Buddha, Venkateshwara, etc. And in the first Satya Yuga of the Swayambhuva Manvantara, Vishnu had multiple incarnations including Varaha, Kapila, and Yagna, whom I discuss here: hinduism.stackexchange.com/q/3664/36 Commented May 11, 2015 at 3:50
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    If that is the case , why do we call Dashavatar? Why do we primarily recognize only 10 avatar across various mahayuga of this kalpa .
    – tekkk
    Commented May 11, 2015 at 4:09
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    @sysinit The notion of the Dashavatara doesn't really have a basis in Hindu scripture; people have just made various lists of what they consider Vishnu's "top ten" incarnations, as I discuss in this answer: hinduism.stackexchange.com/a/935/36 In reality, Vishnu has taken countless incarnations; here is a list of just some of the incarnations that Vishnu has taken in the Vaivasvata Manvantara: hinduism.stackexchange.com/q/7192/36 Commented May 11, 2015 at 5:18

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