I have been trying to find information on Ashtavakra gita but in vain.

Where is the text Ashtavakra Gita found? Is it part of any purana/itihasa? If so, which purana/itihasa and which canto and chapter?

Who is the first one to comment on this text? In which century?

  • 1
    It seems a separate book and not part of any itihasa-purana.
    – user17294
    Commented May 4, 2019 at 4:59
  • It is a dialogue between King Janak and Rishi Ashtaavkra and separate (not a part of any other bigger text).. It is also known as Ashtaavakra Mahaageetaa. Commented May 4, 2019 at 8:19

1 Answer 1


According to The Cultural Heritage of India, Vol. II, the Aṣṭāvakra Gītā a.k.a Aṣṭāvakra Saṃhitā is an independent work. It doesn't belong to any known epic or Purāṇa.



Besides the Bhagavad-Gītā, which is generally known as 'the Gītā', scholars have noticed many other tracts of varying lengths composed in verse form to which the title 'Gītā' is given. Sixteen of them are from (a) the Mahābhārata, twenty from (b) the Purāṇas and similar treatises, and four (c) found as independent works untraced to any other known epic or Purāṇa.

Under the group marked (a) are to be found: Utathya-Gītā, Vāmadeva-Gītā, Ṛṣabha-Gītā, Ṣaḍaja-Gītā, Sampāka-Gītā, Maṅki-Gītā, Bodhya-Gītā, Vicakhnu-Gītā, Hārīta-Gītā, Vṛtra-Gītā, Parāśara-Gītā, Haṃsa-Gītā, Brahma-Gītā, Anu-Gītā and Brāhmaṇa-Gītā.

In the group marked (b) are included: two Kapila-Gītās, Haṃsa-Gītā, Bhikṣu-Gītā, Devī-Gītā, Gaṇeśa-Gītā, two Brahma-Gītās, Sūta-Gītā, three Yama-Gītās, Śiva-Gītā, two Rāma-Gītās, Sūrya-Gītā and Vasiṣṭha-Gītā.

Under the group marked (c) come four works: Aṣṭāvakra-Gītā, Avadhūta-Gītā, Uttara-Gītā, and Pāṇḍava-Gītā.

The names Īśvara-Gītā, Haṃsa-Gītā and Vyāsa-Gītā in all probability refer to the Bhagavad-Gītā only and no other work.

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