Focus on internal change through sadhana or social change through activism?

Hare KrishnaBy Chaitanya Charan das

If we see our tradition, our tradition has primarily focused on internal change. Vishwanath Chakravarti Thakura lived in Vrindavan at a time when Mughals had devastated Vrindavan. That’s the time he wrote his Bhagavatam and Gita commentary. But he doesn’t mention even one word about the Mughal devastation anywhere in his commentaries. So traditionally scripture was seen as primarily a tool for philosophical exposition. In our tradition, Bhakti Vinod Thakur was the first one to write books on social issues. But he also did not mix scriptural commentary with social analysis. When we look at his commentary on “Chaitanya Charitamrita”, “Amrita-pravaha-bhasya”, that’s simple spiritual commentary. He has addressed social issues in his other books like “Tattva Vivek”, “Jaiva Dharma”.