In my last article I shared with you the different gitas from Mahabarata. In this article, I would like to share with you the different gitas from Srimad Bhagavata. Srimad Bhagavata is one among the eighteen puranas. It is a very famous purana written by Sage Vyasa. It has twelve skandas. I would like to view Srimad Bhagavata as a philosophical work drenched in Bhakti. There are seventeen gitas in Srimad Bhagavata and I would like to give a gist of them so that it may help anyone to trace the source and refer to them to develop the spiritual knowledge. Some special sections in Srimad Bhagavata are traditionally considered as gita. It may not be in the format of gita, still it is considered as gita.
1. Bharata Gita – Bharata Gita comes in the fifth skanda (chapters 11- 14). The teaching of Sage Bharata to king Rahuguna is Bharata Gita. Bharata is the son of king Rishaba; after whom this land is name as Bharata. The teaching of Sage Bharata is to control the mind, senses and to have love towards the Lord.
2. Bhikshu Gita – Bhikshu Gita comes in the eleventh skanda (Chapter 23). It is a dialogue between Sage Suka dev and king Parikshit. Its core content is advaita vedanta. It is a story of a poor Brahmin from a place called Avanti who realizes the truth, after much suffering in life.
3. Gopi gitas
There are a set of six gitas in the tenth skanda which are famously said as Gopi Gitas. They are different hymns of the Vraja Gopis, which are deep in emotion, pure selfless and divine love towards Lord Krishna. They are the
1. Venu Gita – When the gopis are at home during the night, they hear the flute song (venu ghana) of Lord Krishna. When they go to work in the morning (to tend the cows in the forest), they sing in praise of the Venu ghana. This hymn is Venu Gita (chapter 21).
2. Pranaya Gita – Pranaya or Prema is pure love, which is a spiritual mentality of equality and oneness of heart between two people, the lover and his beloved. It describes that how one leaves their individuality and identifies with the other (lover). At this stage, they feel that the prana, mana, bhuddhi, deha and vesha (costume) are identical with the other. They do not feel any difference between them. It is the highest state of bhakti. The hymn praising this state of emotion is called the Pranaya Gita (chapter 29).
3. Gopi Gita – Gopi Gita is also a hymn by the gopis assembled on the banks of river Yamuna. While searching for Lord Krishna, they sing about the feeling of separation from Lord Krishna. This hymn is Gopi Gita (chapter 31).
4. Yugala Gita – Yugala gita is pair of verses glorifying Sri Krishna, which the gopis sing in the late afternoon to pass time. It comes in chapter 35.
5. Viraha Gita – When Akrura comes to Vraja to take Sri Krishna and Balaram to Madhura city, the gopis of Vraja including Radha was saddened by the news. They openly express their deep feeling of separation from Sri Krishna and it is Viraha Gita (chapter 39).
6. Bhramara Gita – After going to Madhura, Sri Krishna will sent Uddhava from Madhura to console the gopis of Vraja. He came in the early morning to Madhura. At that time, a gopi spotted a honey bee near Akrura. She thinks that it is a special messenger from Sri Krishna and she laments to that honey bee about her feeling of separation from Sri Krishna. This is Bhramara Gita (chapter 47).
4. Kapila Gita – Kapila Gita comes in the third skanda. Kapila gita is the teaching of Sage Kapila to his mother Devahuti. Sage Kapila was one of the founders of Samkhya philosophy which is a dualistic philosophy. It comes in chapter 25 – 33.
5. Rudra Gita – It is from the fourth skanda (chapter 24). It is also repeated in the Varaha purana. Rudra is the pure devotion to the Supreme Being. It is the hymn in praise of Lord Vishnu expounded by Lord Rudra.
6. Sruti Gita – It comes in the tenth skanda (chapter 87). Sruti Gita is the Vedas singing in praise of the ultimate reality; which means that the Vedas explain the Reality.
7. Rishaba Gita – It is from the fifth skanda (chapter 4, 5, 6). It is the teaching of king Rishaba to his children about practicing good values and attaining liberation.
8. Uddhava Gita – It is otherwise known as Hamsa Gita. It comes in the eleventh skanda. It has thousand verses. It is the last discourse of Lord Krishna to his friend and devotee Uddhava. It is very deep in philosophy like Bhagavad Gita.
9. Aila Gita – It comes in the eleventh skanda. It is the story of king Pururuva (also known as Aila), which Lord Krishna says to Uddhava. It explains how attachments to mundane life affect the spiritual development.
10. Mahishi Gita – It comes in the tenth skanda.(chapter 90). The queens of Lord Krishna sing a hymn in praise of their happy moment with their husband, Lord Krishna. It is a very small gita with only ten verses.
11. Bhumi Gita – It comes in the twelfth skanda (chapter 3). It is a song by mother earth (Bhumi Devi), who laments that how foolish the rulers are that they conquer a part of the land and think that they have conquered the earth and they themselves are sentient being; what to say about their achievements.
12. Jayanteya Gita – It comes in the eleventh skanda (chapter 2-5). It is famously known as Nimi-Navayogi samvada. It is a dialogue between king Nimi and the navayogis (the nine yogis who are the sons of king Rishaba and queen Jayanti). It describes the different steps to reach liberation.
These are the different gitas in Srimad Bhagavata. Some are deep in philosophy, some are deep in the emotion of divine love, and some are deep in the emotion of bhakti. They all are helpful for one’s inspiration and enlightenment.