From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Maṅkigitā literally means ‘song of the sage Maṅki’.

Origin of Maṅkigitā[edit]

The Bhagavadgitā[1] by its extraordinary beauty, elegance and spiritual eminence, inspired the emergence of many other gītās, most of them being in the Mahābhārata itself. One such is this Mañkigitā. It is a part of the Śāntiparva.[2]

Motivation of Creating Maṅkigitā[edit]

The sage Maṅki purchased two oxen, yoked them and was taking them to a field. It so happened that a camel lying on the road, suddenly got up when the oxen had just approached it and started running with the yoke on its neck and the two bullocks hanging. Having lost his source of livelihood, Maṅki developed vairāgya or dispassion and taught this gītā to his own mind.

Overview of the Content[edit]

The gist of the Mañkigitā can be given as follows:

The mind is full of desires. These desires can never be satiated. A person takes a lot of trouble in acquiring wealth. But the accumulated wealth tempts thieves and robbers who take it away, harming or even killing its owner. Loss of wealth also generates intense suffering. Hence one must destroy the seven enemies like kāma,[3] krodha,[4] lobha,[5] moha,[6] mada,[7] mātsarya[8] and ahaṅkāra.[9]

The best way to conquer desires is to stop saṅkalpa.[10] By attaining yoga,[11] I will become happy. Then the mind can never dupe into sorrow and suffering.


  1. Bhagavadgitā means the ‘Song of God’.
  2. Śāntiparva chapter 177, verses 5 to 54
  3. Kāma means lust.
  4. Krodha means anger.
  5. Lobha means greed.
  6. Moha means delusion.
  7. Mada means intoxication.
  8. Mātsarya means jealousy.
  9. Ahaṅkāra means egoism.
  10. Saṅkalpa means deciding to work for fulfilling the desire.
  11. Yoga means concentration of mind on Brahman.
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

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