Both Ramayan and Mahabharat are two great epics of Indian history and both have taken place in entirely different time-periods.
While Ramayan happened in Treta Yuga (the second Yuga), Mahabharat is the story of Dwapar Yuga (the third Yuga) having huge gap of time in between them (millions of years). Still to the surprise of many, there were 15 such characters in Indian history who have been a part of both Ramayan and Mahabharat.
He Lifted Mountain In Ramayana, He Also Met Bheem In Mahabharata
Hanuman being the Chiranjivi( blessed with eternal life), appears in the Mahabharat, he also happens to be Bhim’s brother, both of them son of Vayu. The tale of Hanuman quelling Bhim’s pride, by appearing as an old monkey, when he was on the journey to get the Kadamba flower. Also another tale in the Mahabharat, of Hanuman and Arjun having a bet of who was stronger, and Hanuman losing the wager thanks to help of Lord Krishna, due to which he appears on Arjun’s flag during the Kurukshetra war.
One of the most popular characters of Ramayana, and without his help Rama may not have found Sita in Ravanas captivity. Or we may say Rama could not have won battle with Ravana. There is no need to describe the importance of Hanuman in Ramayana.
Many claim that Hanuman is still present on earth, somewhere in Himalayas.
His Presence Graced Ramayana And His Curse Changed The Track Of Mahabharata.
Parushuram, who appeared in Ram and Sita marriage, is also he is the Guru of the three greatest warriors of the epic namely: Bhishma, Guru Dronacharya and Karna.
The engineer who built the bridge from India to Lanka, who Had A Duel With Krishna.
JAMBVAN, the bear is a known and popular character in Ramayana, who was one of the head in Rama’s army to fight the battle with Ravana. He took a lead part in the Rama and Ravana battle and took an active role in Rama’s victory against Ravana. He was in forefront in many instances and he is well known in Hindus. He was perhaps alone bear in an army of monkeys.
Again he has a small role to play in Mahabharata. Veda Vyasa is very descriptive of all characters who fought Mahabharata battle for 18 days, But a little has been portrayed about war between Krishna and Jambvan which continued for 28 days in a cave. It was for a Syamantaka mani which Jambvan took from a lion, who got it by killing its possessor. As Krishna was blamed for stealing that mani, Krishna fought Jambvan for that mani to clear his name. Jambvan was defeated or he accepted his defeat and in return offered his daughter Jambvanti’s marriage with Krishna.
Raavan’s Father-In-Law Who Became Master Architect For Pandavas
Mayasura, the father of Mandodari and Ravan’s father in law, appears in the Mahabharat too, during the Khandava Dahana incident. Mayasura was the only one to survive the burning of the Khandava forest, and when Krishna finds this out, he lifts his Sudarshan Chakra to kill him. Mayasura however rushes to Arjun, who gives him refuge and tells Krishna, that he is now sworn to protect him. And so as a deal, Mayasura, himself an architect, designs the entire Maya Sabha for the Pandavas.
The Original Possessor Of Bramhastra, He Met Lord Rama Before His War With Raavan
Agastya Rishi met Rama before the war with Ravana and gave him the weapon to win the war. Mahabharata also mentions that Agastya was the one who gave the weapon “Brahmashira” to Drona. This was later on passed to Arjuna and Aswatama.
The Elder Half Brother of Raavan and Fund-raiser of Lanka
We all know that Kuber was the wealthiest king alive. It was from him Lord Vishnu took a loan for his marriage and the hundi at Tirupati is supposed to cover the loan and interest amount. Kuber was the elder half-brother of Ravana and in the Mahabharat he was conferred the lord of wealth title by Brahma, as he lost his kingdom in Ramayan to Ravan.
7. Maharishi Durvasa
Soothsayer in Ramayana, He Went On To Test Draupadi and The Pandavas in Mahabharata
Maharishi Durvasa was the one who predicted the separation of Rama and Sita. He also visited the Pandavas during their exile. It is said that it was Durvasa who gave a mantra to Kunti, the mother of eldest three Pandavas for getting children.
Ram’s mentor. Father of Shakuntala, who is the mother of Bharat after whom Mahabharata is named, rather the country is named
Vishwamitra was Rama’s mentor. He was also the father of Shakuntala who was initially cursed. She also turns out to be the mother of Bharat after whom Mahabharat is named. That’s one long connection.
9. Narad Muni
Smooth Talker Of A Sage, Narada Appears In Both Epics
One of the greatest rishis who is well known for gossiping made his appearance in both the tales. In Mahabharata, he was one of the Rishis attended to Krishna’s peace talks in Hastinapur. Well, Narada is the one who inspired Valmiki to write the Ramayana.
Vibhishana was Another brother of Raavan
Vibhishana was Ravan’s brother who takes the side of Rama during the war. Even though he was crowned the king of Lanka after the war, he knew he would pay the price of betrayal. So in Mahabharata when Yudhistir sent his forces to Lanka, Vibhishana readily accepted the takeover and also sent jewels.
11. Sage Parashara
Vasishtha’s son Sakthi, had a son called Parasara and Parasara’s son was Veda Vyasa, who wrote the Mahabharat. This means Vasishtha was the great grandfather of Vyasa. Brahmarshi Vasishtha lived from the time of Satyavrata Manu to the time of Sri Rama. Sri Rama was Vasistha’s student..
12. Vayu Deva
The God Of Air With Two Mighty Sons
Father to both Hanuman and Bheem, you now know why the two called each other brothers.
A rishi Rama visited. Atri appears before Drona during the Mahabharata war
Parashuram and Hanuman are two of the Chiranjivis in Hindu mythology who’re granted eternal life and stay in circulation till the beginning of the next satyayuga.
So all the Chiranjivis born before/during the Ramayana are obviously common to both the Ramayana and the Mahabharata