‘Stories from Within’ is a Baha’i Blog initiative where, through an audio interview and photographs, we share a short intimate piece about a Baha’i.
In this piece we feature Karen Gallagher, a Baha’i living Haleʻiwa, Hawaii.
Here’s the link if you’d like to watch the ‘Stories from Within’ that tells Emeric Mazibuko’s story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pM90wOetMw
Photography and interview by Nancy Wong.
Editing by Kari Carlson.
Below is a transcript of the interview:
I have been a Baha’i for just barely over 3 years. I rented a house and my landlords were Baha’is. And so the guy, Jackie, asked me what my spiritual beliefs were and I told him and he goes “You’re a Baha’i”, and I’m like “I’m a what?”
And anyway, he gave me a prayer book and then I ended up moving, you know, a few times and the book, luckily it made the cut when I moved because I always purge everything.
I kept the prayer book and then I went through a really miserable time and I remember watching him say the long obligatory prayer one time on the beach, at night. He didn’t know I was there, he didn’t know anyone was there. It was just really beautiful and so I got out the prayer book, and I, I mean, I was really really down. And so I started reading the long obligatory prayer and then I actually memorized it.
The focusing on it, memorizing it, really helped me get out of my blues, and it was about a year or so I was actually saying that prayer every day just because it made me feel better.
Then one day, I was just kind of like, “Well, I’m sitting here praying to Baha’u’llah, I should know some more about Him.” And I read Baha’u’llah and the New Era. And that book, I was almost yelling at the book, everything that I believe really was in Baha’u’llah’s book. I was like, “oh ok, I don’t have to invent a religion, thank God, there’s already one” you know? So I just was really intrigued knowing that God is there and God really listens to us. It’s reassuring.