Thursday, October 31, 2013

Terry, age 12: Why I became a Baha'i

I've always felt that there was something, or someone beyond our knowledge. Growing up in a non-religious family I didn't really understand the concept of God . . . I've always wanted to be a part of a church.   I went to numerous temples, churches, synagogues, and mosques. Then one night I was praying, asking God what religion I should be. Then one night I was flipping through my religion book I stumbled upon the Baha'i Faith, sadly there was limited information. So I turned to the internet, finding tons of information. After about 5 months, I was sure God sent me my answer, so I filled about a declaration card, and sent it to Illinois. After about 6-8 weeks, I received a phone call from a girl named Peggy, who was responding to my call. She is the one to thank that I'm a Baha'i, she guided me spiritually and mentally through the process. And that's why I became a Bahai, to unify man, and all of mankind as one. That's my story on discovering the Bahai Faith, thanks for reading.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

At age 17: “Bahai . . . it is who I am . . .it is my being”

This touching story was written by a newly-declared youth named Adrean

Growing up in a predominantly Agnostic/Atheistic family, it was often hard to find solace in spirituality. Growing up, as well, in a Christian community, and with Christian relatives thrown into the mix, was exceedingly difficult, in its own right. I, unlike those around me, and from a very young age, have been able to see God’s grace in mundane things. The things that are often overlooked. Where others see a simple bird, I see an entire creation of His vision. From the age of seven, I have thought thusly, I have always kept a journal, in which I would write. Writing is the one thing that makes me feel so closely connected with God, that I can stretch my hands out and embrace Him, and the more I write about the miracles I see or hear about, and the more I write Praise in His name, the closer I feel to Him. Even now, when I am 17 years old, I feel that bond growing ever stronger, and it brings me such joy to know that it will grow even stronger.  Being Bahá’í to me, is so much more than a title that I hold, or something that others look upon with confusion, and often scrutiny. It is who I am. It is my being. I cannot exist without my Faith, and I feel like, for the first time in my life, I have a stability that transcends this finite mortal plane. I have a stability that is always there, no matter what physical blow, or emotional strike befalls me.  The greatest solace I have ever felt is knowing that in the end, when my soul is separated from my physical being, I will be embraced by God. It is very hard to feel negative emotions, when one knows that great Truth.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I am young. There is an insuperable amount of ignorance that comes with that. I am aware of that, and I have made it my duty to circumnavigate that very ignorance, and to always keep in mind that the core ideals of being Bahá’í are what must guide me through this difficult, yet infinitely rewarding, life. I am on a spiritual Journey, one that will never end. I am wholly and completely content with this knowledge however, for I do not wish to know all. I never will, and if given the opportunity, I would deny it wholeheartedly. For that is what keeps us pure, the seeking of knowledge. We look towards our Faith for guidance, towards God. It is what fills us with purpose, and to take that away would be to take away the very thing that makes us Human.
When I was 15, my grandmother passed. She was a Buddhist, and did her best to instill ideals into my mind of pacifism, love, and warmth towards all. I feel that having her in my life was the biggest blessing I could ever imagine. She was the one person I was closest to, and the one person who I never believed I could live without. She was my other half, my rock in this world, my yin, my YiaYia and without her here, with me, I felt like I was lost. Adrift in a sea of emotional turmoil, I was lost at what to do. My young body, and mature mind were at a constant battle, for I tended to think about things in profound ways, and make decisions accordingly. This isn’t always a good thing for a teenager, seeing as to how our brain’s cognitive ability is not fully formed. So, in the summer of 2011 I had a thought. “If all that there is to live for is Human strife, then why continue?”
It was after I came to this realization that I decided to attempt suicide. I wrote the note, and carried out my plan to a tee. As I was sitting in my computer chair, looking at a picture of my grandmother, and listening to an Andy Grammar CD, I felt a chill creep down my body. I came to a realization that this, in no way at all, was the answer, and it was then that my spirituality shoved my abnormally- formed cognitive teenage brain into the corner of my being and took over. I hadn’t felt that clear minded, and close to God ever before, and it was in that moment, of pain, and confusion, and utter emotional turmoil, that I found the one thing that has guided my life since, and that will continue to guide me for the rest of Eternity: God’s Love. I felt accepted, and forgiven, and loved, and cherished. Things that I cannot even begin to explain. Just complete, and insurmountable amounts of Joy and Love.
The following year, I did research. I read the Bible, figuring it was a good starting point. I asked neighbors, relatives, and friends, everyone that I knew, about their Faith. It was a touchy subject with most, but I was seeking information, and it had to be done. I started out believing that I was Buddhist, and I was for about a year. As I was watching videos of one of my favorite Vocalists performances, [Andy Grammar] I saw that he was performing at a Bahá’í High School. Being the inquisitive mind that I am, I looked it up. I also made a connection, because I had heard that my paternal grandmother was Bahá’í as well, but we had never really touched on the subject, because I had kept my Spirituality a guarded and cherished secret. This came from an emotional response more than anything, I think. As with any death or loss, it’s hard not to feel some sort of guilt. “Maybe I could’ve saved her if I had kept her closer, dearer to me,” “Maybe, if we hadn’t screamed at each other quite as much, or if I had spent more time with her… this wouldn’t have happened.” These are things that I told myself whilst going through the mourning process, but it made me see the value in things that I hadn’t otherwise, such as relationships, and it helped show me the mortality of us all, and that each individual burns with a flame all their own, and that flame may be snuffed out by the slightest stir of Autumn wind, tossing into the air bronze and yellowed leaves. It made me cherish every person that I knew on a whole new level.
Andy Grammar is Bahá’í . I had never known, and I probably wouldn’t have known unless I had been watching that specific video at that specific time. It is truly a blessing, because his music held such meaning to me beforehand, and now it holds a special, huge part in my heart at present. I got to meet Andy at a concert in Orlando, at the House of Blues. Meeting him was one of the most joyous moments of my life, and being able to exchange Bahá’í greetings with him was surreal.
Being a part of the Bahá’í Faith has become such an integral part of who I am, for even before it was official, I felt so closely connected to it. It describes, to a tee, my being. My purpose, my meaning, my Journey, my Faith. It feels so good to be surrounded by God , at every second of the day. I know that my future holds many more hardships, but I can conquer them all with my Faith in one hand, and God’s hand in the other.

Sandy is in the 12-step program . . . step 7 brought her to God and the Faith

Sandy shared her story with a Bahai who contacted her after she registered her declaration online.

Sandy called back and told me about her spiritual journey.  She is in a 12-step program and entering her 7th step, she felt closeness to God.  This is the step where the soul is asking God to remove personal shortcomings.  Sandy had already been in contact with the local community. She attended a gathering and attended a talk by a well-know Bahai on the topic of bringing unity in one's daily life.  Sandy shared that she had not found the same vision in her previous church.
After talking more about the fundamental verities of the Faith, Sandy asked what would be her next steps.  I encouraged her to begin a study group, to participate in devotional gatherings or to assist with children's classes if she was interested and had the time. 

Her Mormon friend said that what she believes is Bahá’í

Lisa, age 34, learned from her friend, a Mormon, that what she believes is what the Bahá’ís believe, so she investigated further.  She began reading the book God Speaks Again, and before reading it all the way through she realized . . . “I believe this!  I am a Baha'i!”
More about Lisa is shared here by a Bahai who spoke with her directly.
In our phone call today, Lisa shared that, "This is religion for the new times, and it makes sense.  The new Messengers come and teach new things for new times."  As we talked about how she feels, she said, "It did seem a bit odd to register online, to join a religion.  But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense.  It's the perfect thing for this religion, and it makes sense with everything I have read.  New Messenger.  New way to join!  Even joining is modern!"
While talking about her registration, I asked her, "While reading in God Speaks Again and learning about Baha'i, do you believe Baha'u'llah is a Messenger from God?"  Her emphatic response was, "It's kind of hard not to.  Everything makes sense." 
Lisa went to a Catholic school growing up.  Her parents encouraged her to read and decide on her own which religion would be hers.  Her mother always said that this life is spiritual preparation for the life beyond. Something her father emphasized was that all religions are a path to God. He died at an early age, but she now wonders if he too was a Baha’i! 
It amazes Lisa that her parents raised her Christian and Moslem (her father was Iranian) and taught many of the concepts she now finds within the Baha'i Faith.
Lisa went online to and registered herself and her one-year-old son as members of the Bahai Faith. She is eager to meet other members of her spiritual community!

Michael said that he always felt like a Bahai . . .

Twenty years ago, Michael’s uncle investigated the Bahai Faith, and now he too is interested in joining.

Michael called back. He told me that as a child of 9 for about 8 years, he attended Bahai community activities and devotionals.  When he turned 18, he went to college and served in the military after that.  He tried to contact the Baha'is during this time but it was not a good period of his life.  He shared that there was a timeframe when he considered himself a Christian but that he never completely fit it.  Now living in a new town, he has recently connected with a young adult group at the University.  They host devotional gatherings and are together studying the book Paris Talks. 
Michael shared with me that he has always felt like a Baha'i and this is where his spiritual journey has lead.  He is now ready to join the community as a member.

Meg learned about the Bahai Faith in the delivery room . . . .

This is a short story about how Meg, who believes in woman's rights and equality, decided to learn more about the Bahai Faith. She shared her story with a Bahai.

Meg shared with me that she was raised Catholic and at the age of 14 her mother told her she was not so sure about the Catholic Faith. At the age of 20, her dad became terminally ill.   Now that she is in her 30s, she wanted to learn more.  Meg’s brother recently died and she had no faith to turn to. 
Meg and her husband have been attending a non-denominational church but only bible study class is available to them, and it doesn’t allow for any discussion.   They were both told that there was no way to God except through Christ.
Recently, at her work as a delivery room nurse, Meg had a conversation with a woman in the delivery room who shared with her the news about the Bahai Faith. Meg went to investigate the Faith and its teachings online . . .

Tylee is 13 and has been studying the Bahai Faith on his own . . .

Tylee, only 13 years old, first learned about the Bahai Faith because he has always been interested in theology.  Here’s the story he shared with a nearby Bahai.

He found a book that had the Bahai Faith listed in it as a religion . . . so he started investigating it on line.  He was raised in a household without religion.   I commended him on his determination, persistence and enthusiasm during his search and investigation. He has done all the research on his own.  He is such an incredible young man.  WOW!
Tylee shared that he had discussed his interest in registering his membership with his mother.  He shared that she was okay with him joining and that she had actually helped him register on line.  His mother and I talked together, as she was standing nearby the phone.  We had a wonderful conversation and I shared with her that she raised a mature spiritual young man.
She verified everything on the form and confirmed that she had given her consent for him to join the Bahai community.  She gave the phone back to Tylee and we continued our conversation like Anna, from Ruhi book 6 . . .

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Mike & Emily: “My wife and I are looking for something that we can share”

Mike and Emily, both in their 30s, recently registered their declaration on While filling out the form, he shared the following about his search.

My wife and I are looking for something that we can share. We are really into the environment, family, friends, community, and need a practice we can share with community we can feel loved by and we can love. . . .  We have very little money so tithing is a hindrance. I'm a former Catholic but have dabbled in Buddhism and Indian traditions.  She's more liberal in her beliefs.

In speaking with Mike, more was learned about his spiritual journey as told by a nearby Bahai.

Mike grew up Catholic and heard about the Faith during a world religion class in high school approximately 15 years ago. His teacher, a Baptist, "scoffed" at the Baha'i Faith according to Mike, but this planted the spark of curiosity and commitment to investigate further at some point. Two years ago, Mike met a Bahai in a chemistry class - he thought the Bahai was a "cool guy" and learned more about the Faith through him, though the two eventually lost touch.  One year ago, Mike and his wife were talking about their priorities in advance of starting a family, which inspired them to renew their research online. They found that all the Baha'i teachings resonated with them. Eventually they re-kindled their relationship with the Bahai from chemistry class, and his wife, who loaned them Bahai books and materials. They also attended an informal talk on the Bahai Faith. 

Emily too shared more about how she first learned about the Bahai Faith.

Emily was not raised in a formal religion, but considers herself a "spiritual seeker." She learned about the Faith from a college instructor, and found his "way of being in the world" very inspiring. She attended one of his lectures about "inspiring people," which included vignettes about Baha'u'llah and Abdu'l-Baha. Emily then approached her teacher and asked if he was a Baha'i (he was). They had a conversation about the Faith, which Emily has found to be an "underlying source of strength" in her life from that time forward. Emily's instructor recommended the book, "Baha'u'llah and the New Era," which both she and Mike read. After finishing the book, Emily said, "I can live by this!"

Emily shares that she and her husband are both service-oriented and are attracted to the component of service to humanity. She is currently in graduate school . . . and looks at her career choice as a path of service. We talked about the life of Baha'u'llah, the laws, and community life.

Both Mike and Emily are now enrolled members in the Bahai Faith.

“I realized that I found something progressive”

Eighteen-year-old Sasha shares her journey in finding the Bahai Faith, in her own words.
I remember the stubby young girl who’d carry her bible with her everywhere. Even school. That wide-eyed young girl who passionately proclaimed Jesus Christ to be her Lord and Savior. I also remember when that changed. I remember that young teenage girl who read her Quran whereever she could. Even school. This girl had no problem giving praise to her one and only Creator, Allah, ever since the words of her grandfather changed her beliefs forever. “Why would you worship creation instead of the Creator?” He asked her. And then I remember being lost. I remember not being able to believe any religion and having the piercing of hell fire overcome me. The fear that that choosing no religion would damn me. All because of with what I had already encountered, my heart just wouldn't agree.
I grew up being surrounded by 3 major religions: Christianity, Islam, and Catholicism. Ha, you’d figure that I’d resonate with at least one of them, right? That’s what I thought as well. After eventually realizing that Islam nor Christianity was for me,- Catholicism was never really in the running- I remained religionless through most of high school, deciding that I didn’t need one of those 3 religions to keep my faith in God. But that changed drastically during my senior year. Frighteningly, I found that at times my faith would slip between my fingers and I found it hard to keep believing. My tumultuous family background did nothing to help this matter either. I got to the point of breaking down in February of this year. Eating was a difficulty, and schoolwork became a burden. “How can I worry about this paper when I should be worrying about my soul?” Needless to say, death terrified me.
Thankfully, the extremities of these feelings began to subside as the year went on, and I was able to focus again; I simply went back to my normal thinking, believing in God even without a religion. But then, something amazing happened.
I was a Student Teaching Assistant for a 9th grade English class, and one day I lead a group discussion with half of the class. During the discussion, 3 of my more, em, lively, students joking brought up a “super religion” as they called it, catching my ears immediately. I asked them what it was called, and it was none other than the Baha’i Faith. That same day I went to a Starbucks (I suppose I was feeling a latte of some sorts, haha), consulted the ever-reliable Wikipedia, and devoured its article on the Faith. It was almost hard to believe that a religion like this existed, I even wondered “So where’s the catch??”. But I found none. Instead, I found something that made absolute sense.
I realized that I found something progressive in all of its ideas; the complete unity of humanity, equality for all, value of education and inquiry, the validity of previous religions and science, being positive and active members in our communities - there’s so much more. One thing that I found extremely importantly is the idea that God never leaves us. The idea that He will not do the work for us, but will instead give us the guidance to help us help ourselves. The fact that the religion really surrounds us seeking God because we want to. We seek Him not out of fear of hell, but because we desire His love. That is perhaps the most beautiful thing that I have ever encountered, and with that I found home. I eventually made contact with Bahá’ís in my hometown, finding not only a warm and loving environment, but also great great role models. The Baha’is that I met had all been a part of the faith for at least 10 years and eloquently had extended their knowledge to me and answered any question that I had. Unfortunately, I had to leave that wonderful community behind when it was time for me to reach the next destination point, college.
That brings me to now. I’m a current freshman in college . . . and I’m still trying to incorporate the Faith into my everyday life. But I always remain optimistic. If there’s anything that I always have and always will believe is that God makes things happen for reasons, and those reasons will either be revealed to me, or they won’t. Regardless, God has put me through all of those trials and eventually brought me to the faith that I have been looking for. He’s been so amazing to me! And for that, I give my thanks to Him. I choose to follow the teachings of Baha’u’llah, and I choose to try my very best. The best part is that I’m completely happy. I’m happy that I’ve found my true path to God. It’s the piece that’s been missing to this puzzle that is my whole.
Sasha is now an enrolled member of the Bahai Faith, and the local community is reaching out to her.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Christopher enrolled as a Bahai too

Here is a message the Bahai community received from Christopher, a father and a husband. 

My wife and [my 7] kids just became members and I have decided to join the Baha'i faith as well. Thank you very much for all the work! 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Progressive revelation attracted her to the Faith

Dee has a degree in Art History who, at age 56, became attracted to the concept of progressive revelation, a fundamental principal of the Bahai Faith.  She lives in a rural community.  Here is what the Bahai who connected with Dee shared about her journey.
She said she had been raised Baptist but had been told by her mom that she didn't care which church she went to as long as she went, so she began attending different denominations with her many friends. She couldn't figure out why they were all Christian but each had a "different Bible." She felt that the Word was the Word and shouldn't be different from one church to another. Then she talked about different Manifestations and realizing that They all said the same thing really. Then she found the Faith through Seals and Crofts and began studying. She said it made sense to her. She's been reading a bit about the history of the Faith. [We] spoke for over an hour.  She finds what she knows about the Faith to be true to her views. We talked about progressive revelation and I mentioned, after talking for quite a while, that she might really enjoy [two books] The Seven Valleys and Hidden Words. She located the Baha'i Reference Library [on the computer] as we were talking.
Dee contacted the Bahai recently and shared more about herself and her interest in joining the Faith.
Hi, I will be available all day Friday [and] I do have a question or two, after going into different areas of the website. I am ok with not being affiliated with any political party, the main 2 parties aren't very honorable or stable (imho) [in my honest opinion]. I do my best to avoid contention and such, but I am an advocate for healthy living, clean food and such. Am a bit of an activist in those areas, and strongly feel the need to educate others. Hope the people in charge can let me in, knowing this about me. Just hoping that I fit into the Faith as much as the Faith fits me!
Dee is enrolled.  She is happy to have found the Faith and looks forward to connecting with more Baha’is.

“ . . . I wanted to make sure I was completely ready to serve the faith”

Ben is 18 years old and was raised in a Bahai family.  He has been quite active in the Bahai community and he is thinking of studying marketing or education in college.  He is also considering serving at one of the National Bahai schools as a volunteer.   He has already completed his study through three courses in the Ruhi sequence, including training to be an animator of junior youth groups.  Here is what Ben shared about himself.
I have actually considered myself and been acknowledged by my community as a Baha'i my whole life. I am 18 and was raised in a Baha'i household. I am currently attending classes at a  . . . Baha'i school and I am also tutoring a Ruhi book 5 course [Releasing the Powers of Junior Youth] with local youth. I have been searching through myself these past three years not because I didn't accept the faith, but because I wanted to make sure I was completely ready to serve the faith. Thank you so much for reaching out to me.
Ben is now fully enrolled as a member of the Bahai Faith.


Friday, October 4, 2013

From Marines to service as a Bahai for junior youth

It is with great joy that I write to you tonight to tell you that a new friend of ours has declared his belief in Baha'u'llah.

This story is about Raphael, a 21 year old who was in the Marines and just a few months ago returned from a tour of duty overseas. He grew up with Andrew, who just last month had declared at one of the youth conferences.
As part of our study group and planning ahead for forming junior youth groups in the area, Andrew wanted to start a group in his town too, so we sat together and discussed possible friends he could invite to join with him in forming one. He then thought of Raphael, a friend with whom he had recently reconnected. Raphael had also been a student at the local high school.
When he and Raphael met just two weeks ago after not seeing each other for some time, Andrew told him about the Bahai Faith and the junior youth spiritual empowerment program. Just a few days later, Raphael joined Andrew and me as we visited a neighborhood to talk with the youth. A few nights later, Raphael came to the study group with us, and afterward we gave him a prayer book and a pamphlet about Baha'u'llah.
On his own, Raphael made some decisions. He took off the next two days from work to visit his family and church to discuss with his pastor, priests, parents, and grandparents the new Faith he discovered. After discussions with them, he signed his declaration card and mailed it in.


Thursday, October 3, 2013

"I didn't understand the various religions either until I became a Baha'i"

Ashley, a young adult from the great lakes area, registered her declaration online just a few days ago and was contacted right away by a Bahai who wanted to meet her and learn more about her interest in the Bahai Faith.  Here is her story, as told by the friend who made contact with her.
Ashley called me back while at work.  She explained that growing up she had no religious affiliation or training.  When she was about to begin high school, a friend recommended an Evangelical Christian school.  Ashley attended this school and identified herself with the Christian faith.  It was in this high school that she first heard the name Baha'i.  Later in college, she pursued a number of different majors but settled finally on religious studies.  She also encountered the Baha'i Faith a little more through her coursework.  There were also a few people she met who were Baha'is and through social media, she read and learned more about the Faith. 
According to Ashley, what really made a difference for her was that she felt the religions came from the same Source and there were very few differences between them.  “Why then was there so much disunity since we all believe in one God?” she asked. 
Wanting to learn more, Ashley went to the library and checked out a book about the Faith.  She read it out loud to her boyfriend, who is also interested in learning more about the Bahai Faith, and exclaimed that what she was reading was exactly what she believed!  “I didn't understand the various religions either until I became a Baha'i,” she explained.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

He is drawn to the principle of unity--"This is the Truth! It is so good!"

Emanuel is now a member of the Bahai Faith!  Here is what he shared about himself with his friends . . .
Born into a Muslim and of Nigerian background, Emanuel always felt that Islam was "forced on him" and he practiced briefly out of respect for his father. He later heard about the Baha'i Faith through Baha'i friends who live in this community.  Last month, he attended the Youth Conference near him, and 2 weeks later, signed a card at a Baha'i gathering.   When he asked if the Baha'is had a card for him to sign, his friends gave him a "very long hug."
Emanuel feels "empowered" by the Baha'i teachings; and when he learned about Baha'u'llah, Emanuel shared, "This is the Truth! It is so good!" He also thought, "How can you deny this - it will change the world!  Why not embrace it?" He is drawn to the principle of unity and the importance placed on family.
Two laws that he spoke about were “no backbiting and no prejudice!"
Emanuel is involved in community life with the Bahais. He attends many devotional gatherings and has already completed the course called “Reflections on the Life of the Spirit;” he is now studying the course called “Releasing the Powers of Junior Youth.”


“First impressions are important . . . “

Marcel was raised in the Christian church, but he stopped attending as a youth, and became agnostic. He first heard of the Faith on NPR radio, and after hearing a little about the beliefs, researched it for himself online. He found that the Bahai Faith is everything that he believes:  that the world's religions are true, and include Christianity.
After giving "a good bit of thought” about the Faith, he made a decision to register his declaration.  He spoke at length with a Bahai and soon after was invited to community events including Feast, a local study group, and devotional gatherings. 
Recently, Marcel shared . . .
First impressions are important, and I am happy to say that I am very impressed and touched by the warm welcome I received from so many Baha'is on Thursday.
Welcome to the community Marcel!


His friend said, “Everything you've said sounds like Baha'i,” and now he is

Today Allison spoke with Adam on the phone within hours of him registering his declaration online. Here is a little insight into what brought Adam to want to know more about the Bahai Faith.
A few weeks ago he and friend were having a conversation.  One of the topics [they discussed] was religion.  When Adam described what he believed in, the friend said, "Everything you've said sounds like Baha'i."  So Adam began to research the Bahai Faith online.  After a thorough investigation, he decided to become a member.  Some of the things he and I discussed, in addition to an overview of the Faith, was his interest in Pilgrimage to the Holy Land, not gossiping - which really bothers him, and knowing that  there are two communities not too far away.  Already, he has downloaded a few books to his Kindle.

“I . . . accepted that He had already come.”

Patrick, a 20 year old student at a local university, recently registered his declaration online. In his own words, though English is his “third language,” he shares how he learned about the Bahai Faith and his search for a religion that fits with his beliefs. 
I was involved in a lot of problems when I was in high school; stealing, vandalizing, fighting, and disrespecting the school staff. To find a solution [I wanted] to distance myself from these problems.  I started to look into religion, as one of the most influential people in my life guided me [to do]. For instance, I started with Islam for the reason that the most respectful students in my school were Muslim. I was raised as a Catholic, but I never agreed with their teaching, so Islam was the only religion that I saw as an answer. Months after studying Islam, I started to regard myself as a Muslim, and for those months, I was never again caught in any of the trouble I previously faced. But I could not ever become a Muslim because of my religious philosophy. I always believed that there is only one God, and that all the major religion prophets are His messengers, and because of geographical and cultural differences, there messages had to be taught differently.  I also could not spiritually become a Muslim because I do not tolerate gender discrimination as I believe in unity of humanity. For instance, I started Googling for the most peaceful religion, and especially religions that have doctrines similar to my beliefs. During my search, I found the Baha'i Faith. I understood and accepted that [H]e had already came.
After reading about [the] Baha’i Faith, I stopped my research. I felt something that I had never experienced before. Something [that is] hard to explain. I was so surprised that there is a religion that shares some of my beliefs, and for that moment, I knew that Baha'i was the answer. I always believed in unity of religion and humanity, which was what distanced me from being a Catholic. I also believe that God cannot be fully understood by humans, and able for us to create an image of [H]im. I also always believed that there would be another messenger after Jesus (a modern prophet), and after learning about Bahá'u'lla[h] I understood and accepted that [H]e had already came, which is the reason I believe that [H]e is the most recent Manifestation of God, and therefore we must accept and follow the law for humanity that was given to [H]im, for us to follow.