Biography of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu:

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486-1534): Saint, Preacher, and Founder of Gaudiya Vaishnavism

Early Life:

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, also known simply as Gauranga, was born on February 18, 1486, in Nabadwip, Bengal (present-day Navadvipa, West Bengal, India). His parents, Jagannath Mishra and Sachidevi, named him Vishvambhar. From a young age, he exhibited extraordinary intelligence and spiritual inclinations.
Biography of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
Biography of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s Religious Transformation:

In his teenage years, Vishvambhar became a renowned scholar and was known for his exceptional knowledge of scriptures, especially the Vedas. However, at the age of 23, he underwent a profound religious transformation. Influenced by his deep devotion to Lord Krishna, he embraced the life of a devotee and started spreading the practice of congregational chanting (sankirtan) of the holy names of God, particularly the Hare Krishna mantra.

Teachings and Philosophy:

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu emphasized the chanting of the holy names of God as the most effective means of spiritual realization in the current age, known as the Kali Yuga. He stressed the importance of love and devotion (bhakti) to God, considering it the ultimate goal of human life. His teachings were based on the ancient scriptures, especially the Bhagavad Gita and the Bhagavata Purana.

Pilgrimages and Followers of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu:

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu embarked on extensive pilgrimages, spreading his teachings and divine love throughout India. He attracted a large following of devoted disciples and transformed the lives of many people through his divine presence and profound teachings. His movement later evolved into the Gaudiya Vaishnavism tradition.

Literary Contributions:

Although Chaitanya Mahaprabhu did not personally write any books, his teachings were recorded and compiled by his disciples, most notably by Rupa Goswami and Sanatana Goswami. These writings form the foundation of Gaudiya Vaishnavism, and the tradition’s theology and philosophy are derived from Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s teachings.


Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s influence on the devotional landscape of India has been profound. His movement continues to thrive through the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), founded by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada in the 20th century, which popularized the chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra globally. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s birthday, known as Gaura Purnima, is celebrated with great devotion and enthusiasm by his followers and devotees around the world.