It is said that Indra and the Gods visited Lord Krishna in Dwarka and requested him to return to, heavenly abode (vaikuntha). Lord Krishna assured them that he will be leaving the world very soon and returning to heaven. Hearing this, Uddhava begs Krishna to take him along. Lord Krishna then gives a discourse to Uddhava.
In essence it is the same as Bhagwad Gita. But instead of a battle field setting where Krishna urges Arjuna to kill his enemies as a part of his duty, here the same philosophical doctrines are explained in a more somber atmosphere. We need to understand that although Uddhava Gita contains instructions similar to those imparted to Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra; it also contains very confidential teachings that are not available even in Bhagwad Gita.
The five truths that embody the teachings of Bhagwad Gita- Isvara (the Supreme Lord), Jeva (the living entities), Prakrati (material nature), Kala (time), and karma (activities) - are fully elaborated upon in the Uddhava Gita with practical application in life for salvation.
(The writer is professor of economics & former Dean, faculty of Social Sciences, former Chairman, Dept. of Economics & Dept. of Journalism & Mass Communication, Kurukshetra University, Haryana. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)