Three Types of Vishnu Vs Krishna – Who is Supreme and Source?

Three Types of Vishnu Vs Krishna – Who is Supreme and Source?



Hare Krishna Prabhu ji.. Me and my wife are in initial stages of devotional service to Lord Krishna.. Our parents taught us from childhood that Lord Vishnu is the highest diety and supreme among all lords and lord Krishna is his incarnation so did he existed before this incarnation as lord krishna?? I while reading Bhagvad gita and Shri Krishna come across contradictions where in Lord Krishna is Supreme personality of Godhead. So please tell who is supreme?? (Vishnu or Krishna?)


“Hare Krishna! Please accept my humble obeisance! I was wondering if you could clear this confusion that is in my mind.   I was brought up being taught that Krishna is an Avatar of Lord Vishnu. After attending ISKCON classes and talks and reading Srila Prabhupads book , I am clear now that Krishna is the supreme, but I still do not understand clearly the difference between Vishnu and Krishna and why so many people think krishna is an avatar.    Haribol!”


Three Types of Vishnu Vs Krishna – Who is Supreme and source?

This is the doubt that many devotees have and it is natural since there are so many stories about Krishna, Vishnu, avatars, etc.   This article will put a Full Stop for all such doubts of devotees!

(Why Krishna is Supreme as Vyasa Puranas say many gods as Supreme? READ HERE!)

First , Let us read what is said by Srila Prabhupada about three Types of  Vishnu Vs Krishna and their Supremacy:

(1) Krishna is the Adhi Purusha. He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead who is the source of all the deities; He does not directly involve in the creations and He expands into different forms to undertake this process.

Lord Krishna is the original form of the Lord who appears in Goloka Vrindavan, plays with the gopas (cowherd boys), and has loving relationships with His dear devotee.

Srila Prabhupada has said in many places that Lord Vishnu is the expansion of the Lord Krishna who would take care of business in a more formal way – protecting His devotees,  riding on Garuda  (Lord Vishnu’s great winged carrier), in the heart of each soul.

(Why the scriptures claim many Supreme Gods that confuses my devotion to Krishna? READ HERE!)

(2) Maha-Vishnu is a plenary expansion of Krishna. It is Maha Vishnu into whom all the innumerable universes enter and from whom they come forth again simply by His breathing process.

(3) Generally, Srila Prabhupada would refer to Lord Vishnu in the place of Lord Sri Krishna and vice versa, interchangeably.

These two are examples:

(4) BHAGAVAD GITA (1.14): “…and wherever the Lord is present, the goddess of fortune is also there because the goddess of fortune never lives alone without her husband. Therefore, victory and fortune were awaiting Arjuna, as indicated by the transcendental sound produced by the conch shell of Vishnu, or Lord Krishna.”

(Krishna, as Buddha denied vedas & Shiva as Sankaracharya reestablished Vedas, as requested by Krishna. Why? READ HERE!)

(5) BHAGAVAD GITA (2.2): “…Persons who are led by the material conception of life do not know that the aim of life is realization of the Absolute Truth, Vishnu, or Bhagavan Sri Krishna, and they are captivated by the external features of the material world, and therefore they do not know what liberation is.”

(6) “BRAHMA SAMHITA” beautifully clears your doubt as follows:

yasyaika-nisvasita-kalam athavalambya

jivanti loma-vila-ja jagad-anda-nathah

visnur mahan sa iha yasya kala-viseso

govindam adi-purusam tam aham bhajami

MEANING: “The Maha-Vishnu, into whom all the innumerable universes enter and from whom they come forth again simply by His breathing process, is a plenary expansion of Krishna. Therefore I worship Govinda, Krishna, the cause of all causes.”


Therefore one should conclusively worship the personal form of Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead who has eternal bliss and knowledge. He is the source of all forms of Vishnu, He is the source of all forms of incarnation, and He is the original Supreme Personality, as confirmed in Bhagavad-gita.

(7)“Brahma Samhita (5-48)” also describes Lord Krishna as the “original candle” from which many candles are lit, and they appear the same, but the original is Lord Sri Krishna!


The Adhi Purusha Krishna expands into THREE forms (Purusha Avataras) of  VISHNUs

(1) MAHA VISHNU who creates the material universes just with a glance through Pradhana & Mahat tatva;

(Why Krishna alone is the Supreme Personality of Godhead? Why Shiva Purana says Shiva as Supreme? READ HERE!)

(2) GARBHODAKASAYI VISHNUwho enters each and every universe. From His navel, the stem of a lotus flower grows, and on that lotus flower the first creature, Brahma, is born. Within the stem of that lotus flower are fourteen divisions of planetary systems, which are created by Brahma. Within each universe the Lord is present as the Garbhodakasayi Visnu, and He maintains each universe and tends to its needs.

When it is required, this very same Visnu takes the form of Lord Siva and annihilates the cosmic creation. The three secondary incarnations—Brahma, Visnu and Siva—are the predominating deities of the three modes of material nature. The master of the universe, however, is the Garbhodakasayi Visnu, who is worshiped as the Hiranyagarbha  Supersoul. The Vedic hymns describe Him as having thousands of heads.  Although He is within the material nature, He is not touched by it.


is the third incarnation of Visnu, Ksirodakasayi Visnu,  is also an incarnation of the mode of goodness.  He is also the Supersoul of all living entities (residing in our hearts), and  He resides on the ocean of milk within the universe.

Hope you are clear about the three Types of Vishnu Vs Krishna.

(Why only ISKCON says Krishna alone is Supreme and can liberate us? READ HERE!)

Author: RAJAN

RAJAN from Tamil Nadu, India, a Life Patron and an Initiated Devotee being in ISKCON for nearly three decades, serves anonymously to avoid Prominence and crowd as an insignificant, Humble and Neutral Servant for all the devotees of Krishna! He promotes Social media forums and this blog-website as e-satsangha (e-forums) blessed with Lakhs of followers, to give Spiritual Solutions for all the Material Problems of the devotees since 2011! He writes friendly and practical tips to practice devotion (i) without hurting the followers of other paths, (ii) without affecting the personal and career life, and (iii) without the blind, superstitious and ritualistic approach! He dedicates all the glories and credits to his Guru and Krishna.

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