The Avadhuta gita is one of the 36
minor philosophical poems composed in
imitation of the well-known Bhagavad gita.
It is an independent treatise Advaita
Vedanta and preaches an uncompromising
non-dualism. Its authorship is attributed
to Avadhuta Dattatreya. Hence it is also
called Datta gita or Datta-gita-yogasastra.
It is also titled, though rarely, Vedantasara.
This small treatise of 271 verses is
divided into 28 chapters. The first chapter
deals with the nature of the atman, which
is omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent; which has no birth, no death, no
bondage and no liberation either. The second deals with the proofs for the same. Duality is born out of ignorance of the
real nature of the one Divine. Incidentally,
even the great Avadhuta has hinted at
the need for a spiritual guide (2.23) in
realizing the atman. The next two chapters
deal with the inner nature of the atman
in highly poetical tones. The fifth chapter
advises a man to avoid all lamentations,
as the atman is the same in all conditions.
The sixth chapter negates all kinds of
distinctions whether of caste or family, of
senses or their objects, of the mind or the
intellect or their activities because none
of these exists when looked at from the
standpoint of the atman. The seventh
describes the state of the avadhuta. The
eighth gives a definition of the word
'avadhuta' by interpreting each of the four
syllables (a, va, dhu, ta) of that word.
Q1. How many
chapters are there in Avadhuta Gita?
The Avadhuta Gita is organized into eight chapters
containing 289 Shlokas or verses in total. Some of the verses of the Avadhuta
Gita are found in the Bhagavata
Purana (Srimad Bhagavatam) wherein Dattatreya, the pastime incarnation or
the Lila Avatar of Supreme Lord Krishna, describes the journey of
self-realization or the science of the soul. It also talks about the nature of
a self-realized or spiritually advanced person and how a person can achieve the
highest perfection of life.
Q2. Who wrote
The Avadhuta Gita is believed to be written by the
pastime incarnation of Supreme Lord Krishna who
appeared as the sage named Dattatreya. It is also known as Dattatreya Gita,
Avadhuta Granth, and Datta Gita Yoga Shastra. It deals with the philosophy of
Advaita Vedanta. There are 289 Slokas or verses in this book that are
structured in eight chapters that talk about the teachings of the sage
Dattatreya on the science of self-realization.
Q3. What is the
meaning of Avadhuta?
The Sanskrit word Avadhuta means a liberated or
self-realized person or soul. A self-realized person knows the Absolute Truth,
the three modes of material nature (Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas), how these three
modes influence the conditioned soul, what the real identity of a person is,
and what his real purpose is. He is also often known as a “Paramahamsa”, one
who is free from the clutches of Maya. The Avadhuta Gita
(the song of the liberated soul) illuminates the knowledge of the soul and how
it can achieve liberation.
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