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Uddhava Gita

Uddhava, the son of Devabhaga a yadava hero, was a cousin friend of Krishna. When Krishna decided to send the news of his welfare to the gopis of Vrindavan who had been very much worried, it was Uddhava who acted as his messenger. Before Krishna left for his eternal Abode, Uddhava approach him for his last message. This has now become well-known as Uddhava Gita (Bhagavata, 11.7.29).


Q1. Who was Uddhava in Mahabharata?

Uddhava is mentioned as a great devotee, paternal cousin, and friend of the Supreme Lord Krishna in Mahabharata. He was a disciple of Brihaspati and had the fortune to learn Bhakti Yoga (the science of pure devotion to the Lord) from Krishna Himself. Srimad Bhagavatam mentions that Uddhava looked the same as Lord Krishna. Therefore, when he went to Vrindavan to deliver Krishna’s message to the Gopis, they mistook him for Lord Krishna. According to the Mahabharata, Uddhava was the minister of the Vrishnis and everyone treated him with great reverence.

Q2. What did Krishna give to Uddhava?


Uddhava was a staunch devotee of Lord Krishna. His only aim in life was to please the Lord with his every action. When the Lord was preparing to leave the planet after having performed all His pastimes and fulfilling the purpose of His descent, He instructed Uddhava about the Absolute Truth, the science of God. This conversation between Sri Uddhava and Shri Krishna came to be known as the “Uddhava Gita”. Lord Krishna then sent Uddhava with these transcendental teachings to deliver them to the sages of Badarikashrama.


Q3. What is written in Uddhava Gita?


Uddhava Gita, a great mystery, is a divine conversation between the Supreme Personality of Godhead Krishna and His intimate friend and devotee Shri Uddhava. While going back to His eternal abode Goloka, Lord Krishna spoke the Gita to Uddhava in which He elaborately explained the path of self-realization, the modes of material nature, various Yoga and mystic perfections, and the path of pure devotional service unto the Supreme Lord.


Q4. What is the difference between Uddhava Gita and Bhagavad Gita?


Although Uddhava Gita and Bhagavad Gita have been spoken by Lord Krishna to His intimate friends Uddhava and Arjuna respectively, there are slight differences between the two. In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna explained to Arjuna the real nature or identity of the living entities and their relationship with Him. Whereas, the Uddhava Gita takes the knowledge of the Absolute Truth one step further. Lord Krishna elaborately explained to Uddhava how material nature works, what the different paths of self-realization are, what the nature of the soul is, and how it can achieve the highest perfection of life by performing pure devotional service.


Q5. Who is the father of Uddhava?


The father of Uddhava was Devabhaga who was the brother of Lord Krishna’s father Vasudev. In other words, Uddhava was the cousin of Lord Krishna. The bond between them was not on the bodily platform but was completely spiritual. Because Uddhava was very attached to Lord Krishna and always remained absorbed in His thoughts, He looked the same as the Lord.


Q6. When was the Uddhava Gita written?


Uddhava Gita was spoken by the Supreme Lord Krishna to His dear devotee, friend, and cousin Uddhava. The Lord wanted to enlighten Uddhava with the highest philosophy of Bhakti (pure devotion) before leaving the planet Earth to Goloka Vrindavan. He elaborately explained the path of self-realization and sent Uddhava to pass that knowledge to the sages in the Himalayas (Badarikashrama). After Lord Krishna and all the Yadus went back to Goloka, the beginning of Kaliyuga took place and Shri Vyasadev compiled all the Vedic scriptures and presented them to be accessible to common people.

Q7. Where is Uddhava Gita?


Uddhava Gita, a divine philosophical conversation between the Supreme Lord Krishna and His dear friend and devotee Shri Uddhava, is part of the eleventh Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam (Bhagavata Purana). In this conversation, Lord Krishna explained everything in detail about the Absolute Truth, different ways of approaching it, the real nature of living entities, the nature of the material nature, various paths of self-realization, and the ultimate goal or purpose of all living entities. The Uddhava Gita is therefore a great mystery that opens up the path to the highest perfection.