Once a man happened to pass through a forest area and he saw a small creature on the trunk of a tree. When he returned to the city, he told his friend that he had seen a beautiful creature of red colour on a certain tree. The friend replied that when he went into the woods he also saw that creature, but it was green in colour. Another man who was present there interrupted them both and insisted that it was yellow. Then others arrived and asserted that it was grey, white and blue and so on and so forth. Soon they started quarreling among themselves. To settle the dispute, all of them went to the forest and arrived near the tree. They saw a man sitting under it. He said that he lived under that tree and knew the creature very well. He added that all their descriptions were true and the creature assumes different colour at different times because it was a Chameleon, and at times it had no colour at all. The moment it has a colour, the next moment the colour changes and the moment after that it becomes colourless.
Using the above example Sri Ramakrishna used to say, only those devotees who constantly think of God and thereby live in His presence, alone can know His real nature. Such a devotee knows that God reveals Himself to seekers in various forms and aspects. He knows that God has attributes and again He has none. Just as the man sitting under the tree all the time knows the real nature of the Chameleon, only the devotee who constantly contemplates on God and thus tries to live in His presence all the time knows His real nature.