Dear Guru Maharaja,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to you and Srila Prabhupada.
Who are the 12 Mahajanas? I heard them mentioned in S.B. But I do not know who they are? Thank you.
Dear Bhakta Richard,
Receive my blessings. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.
The Mahajanas are twelve particularly powerful personalities enpowered by the Lord to spread transcendental knowledge and devotion.
Literally mahajana means “great person”.
Srimad-Bhagavatam say they are:
Lord Brahma, Shiva, Narada, the four Kumaras, Kapila, Prahlada Maharaja, Svayambhuva Manu, Janaka, Bali Maharaja, Bhishma, Śukadeba Gosvami and Yamaraja.
Manonatha Dasa (ACBSP)
Mahajanas are the twelve delegated agents of the Lord Vishnu who have the duty to bring to the people the message to follow the path of devotion to service. The word means “great persons”, and was also used for administrators or officials of the Western Chalukyas rulers.
Bhagavata Purana (6.3.20-21) lists twelve Mahajanas, biggest devotees of God Vishnu and knowers of Bhagavata-dharma. They are Lord Brahma, Narada, Shiva, the four Kumaras, Kapila — the son of Devahuti, Svayambhuva Manu, Prahlada, Janaka, Bhishma, Bali, Śuka, and Yama.