Stories from Within: Karen Gallagher

‘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.

About the Author

Naysan is the editor of Baha'i Blog and he has worked in various avenues of media for two decades. He’s passionate about using the arts and media to support and explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith and he has produced and collaborated on popular music projects like the "DawnBreaker Collective" and the successful Ruhi-inspired sequence of "MANA" albums. His experience as a producer for CNN was invaluable while working on a number of special projects for the Baha’i World Centre, including the "Building Momentum" and "Pilgrimage: A Sacred Experience" videos. If there’s a media-related Baha’i project out there, chances are that Naysan was involved with it somehow!

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