Uddhava Gita- Beautiful conversation between Krishna and Uddhava

Value- Faith, Right conduct

Sub value- Surrender, Trust

Uddhava had done a number of services to Bhagawan Krishna from his childhood. He used to drive Krishna’s chariot also.  He never asked for any benefit or boon from Krishna.

At the point of his work coming to an end in Dwapara Yuga, Krishna said to Uddhava, “In this incarnation of mine, several people have sought and obtained benefits and boons. But, you have never asked for any. Ask now. I want to complete my work by doing you also some good.”

Though Uddhava did not desire anything for himself, the conduct of Krishna, whom he had observed from childhood, appeared to be a riddle, with word and deed being divergent. He wished to get an explanation from him for this. “Lord, your advice how to live was one thing, and how you lived was another. In the play of Mahabharata, in the role you took, in the deeds you performed, there are things that I do not understand. I am curious to know the explanation for them. Will you be kind enough to clarify?”


“Uddhava, what I spoke to arjuna in the battle-field then is Bhagavd Gita. What I will now speak to you is Uddhava Gita. I have created this opportunity just for that. Ask without any hesitation.”

Uddhava started, “First I need one clarification. You were an intimate friend of the Pandavas. They trusted you implicitly as a friend in need. Being aware of not only the present but also the future, should you not have prevented Dharma from engaging in the dice play as an illustration of the definition of a good friend that you have preached? Why have you not done so?

Let it be. Once the play started, you could have made Dharma win and taught a lesson to the cunning ones. You did not do that either. Dharma lost his wealth, his kingdom and himself. He could have been spared with that as a punishment for having gambled. You could have entered the assembly when he wagered his brothers. You did not do even that.

Duryodhana challenged, ‘Draupadi is lucky. Play with her as the stake. I will return all that you had lost.’ At least then, you could have swung the fortune by making the bogus dice turn in Dharma’s favour. You did not do that also. On the contrary, only when Draupadi was disrobed and she was about to lose her honour, you saved her and boasted that you had saved her honour.

When a third person seized her tresses, dragged her to the court of cunning people and touched her clothes, what honour was left? What is your pride about? Is not the one who rescues a friend at peril the friend in need? Are you a friend in need, having failed to do so? Is your action righteous?” Uddhava was in tears.

This is not merely the mental upheaval of Uddhava; they are the issues all of us raise after reading Mahabharata. Uddhava has raised them with Krishna for us close on the heels of the war.

Bhagawan smiled.

“Uddhava, the rule of nature is that the one who is circumspect should win. Dharma did not have the wisdom which Duryodhana had. That is why Dharma lost.”

Uddhava looked nonplussed.

Krishna continued, “Duryodhana was not adept in dice play. But he had abundance of wealth to offer at stake. He said, ‘I will offer the stake, my uncle will roll the dice.’ That was a master stroke. Dharma could have said, ‘I will offer the stake. My brother-in-law, Krishna, will roll the dice.’

If Sakuni and I had played, who would have won? Could Sakuni have been able to roll the numbers I called? Or, would I not have been able to roll the ones he called?

Let it be. It might be forgiven that Dharma forgot to include me in the play. But, he made another unwise thing. He prayed, ‘Alas, I have committed to play dice by destiny. Krishna should not come to know of this. He must not by chance come into the gambling house.’ He bound me out of that place. He prayed to me that I should not go there. I stood outside waiting for someone to call me.

When Bhima, Arjuna, Nakula and Sahadeva were staked and lost, they also indulged in berating Duryodhana and cursing their fate; they did not appeal to me.

When Dusshasana went to Draupadi and seized her tresses to comply with Duryodhana, did she

at least think of me? No. She went to the assembly and argued relying on her own strength; she did

not call me. Good luck, she did not fight when she was disrobed and raised her voice saying, ‘Hari, Hari, surrender to you, Krishna.’

I got a chance to save her honor only then. I went immediately when called.what fault is there

on me in this episode?”

“Wonderful explanation, Krishna. I am awe-struck, but not deceived.  May I ask you a further question?”


“Will you come only if called? Will you not come to rescue your friends and establish dharma?”

Krishna smiled.

“Uddhava, human life takes shape based on one’s own actions. I do not conduct it, nor interfere in it.

I am just a witness watching from close quarters all that transpires. That is the dharma of God.”

“Beautiful! You will be watching from near all our sinful deeds. We have to persist with such deeds,

accumulate sins and suffer.  Is it so?” cried Uddhava.

“Uddhava, reflect on the import of what I have said carefully.

When you realize that I am watching as a witness, you cannot do wrong things or sinful deeds. Only

when you forget it, you slip into thinking that you can act unknown to me. It is only then that events with

adverse consequences take place.

That Dharma thought that he could gamble unknown to me was his blind spot. If he had realized that

I watch everything as witness, this dice play could have ended in a different result, is it not so?”

Uddhava was dumbstruck and absorbed in bhakti. What profound philosophy! What lofty truth!


The puja to God and prayer are a mental craving for his help, is it not? When the faith overwhelms that

nothing can move but under His will, how is it possible not to sense his palpable presence as witness?

How is it possible to act oblivious of that?  Bhagawan preached this tenet only throughout Bhagavad Gita.

Though he drove the chariot for Arjuna, he did not take the place of Arjuna and fight. HE is the eternal witness.

If one realises that God is in us, around us, below us and all knowing and all pervading we will never do anything wrong.


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