Life in Community


Living Out a Gift Economy in Community with Others

Posted on August 1, 2017 by
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Putting love into practice can be done even when you have nothing materially.


Servant Leadership in Cooperative Business: Stirring It Up at East Wind Nut Butters

Posted on July 11, 2017 by
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An egalitarian community’s General Manager reflects on embodying collective values and ecological sanity in a three-million-dollar-a-year business.


Participatory Budgeting in an Income-Sharing Community

Posted on June 11, 2017 by
1 Comment

How does one share income and expenses among a hundred people? Twin Oaks discovers how to supplant apathy with widespread engagement.


The Gift Economy of Standing Rock

Posted on June 1, 2017 by
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The principles of indigenous culture informed the Water Protectors’ camps: generosity, compassion, and collective survival took precedence.


Finding Balance of Public and Private in Community

Posted on January 21, 2017 by
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The erosion of the commons by private interests is a disaster for modern human settlements; a community without shared spaces is barely a community at all.


Public vs. Private: Group Dilemma Laid Bare!

Posted on January 11, 2017 by
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For some neighbors, the logical leap from “glimpse of skin” to “nudist colony” is a surprisingly short one to make.


Ecosexuality: Embracing a Force of Nature

Posted on January 1, 2017 by
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Only when we create a container that is loving enough and strong enough to embrace the erotic, do we create a container that is loving enough and strong enough to embrace all of Life itself.


Five Tools to Help Groups Thrive

Posted on December 21, 2016 by
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A clearly articulated evolutionary purpose, a welcoming of the whole self, and governance through self-management are keys to collective success.


Social Permaculture: Applying the Principles

Posted on December 11, 2016 by
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Permaculture’s 12 principles apply to human groups just as much as to any other ecological system.


Social Permaculture—What Is It?

Posted on December 1, 2016 by
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Ecological relationships are relatively easy to deal with. Human relationships are often much more difficult, but we can design social structures that favor beneficial patterns of behavior.


Not Rocket Science, but Just as Important

Posted on November 25, 2016 by
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The arts of cooperative living—supported tirelessly by the cash-strapped FIC, and worthy now more than ever of financial support—will be as essential as technical skills if our species is to survive on this planet or any other.


Social Permaculture, and Public vs. Private, #173 Contents

Posted on November 21, 2016 by
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Our Winter issue explores both Social Permaculture and the interface of Public and Private in intentional community. Starhawk and her colleagues share wisdom from the cutting edge of social permaculture practice, while diverse communitarians discuss how they find balance between the collective and the individual, openness and self-protection, outer-world activism and internal focus. We also learn about Sociocracy missteps, legal structures that help groups put their best feet forward (or not), and more.


Happiness in Communal Life: A Scientific Project

Posted on November 1, 2016 by
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Statistics don’t lie: communal living seems to help people be happier.



Grassroots Activism Starts at Home

Posted on October 11, 2016 by
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At the RareBirds Housing Co-operative, community life and outside activism deepen and strengthen each other.


Not the Last of the Mohicans: Honoring Our Native Predecessors on the Land

Posted on September 30, 2016 by
1 Comment

How can we do right by the native peoples whose ancestral homelands now host our intentional communities?


Coming of Age in Service Community

Posted on September 21, 2016 by
1 Comment

Growing up in a community with a strong commitment to changing the world can be both enlivening and challenging.


Activism and Service at Black Bulga Community: Inspiring, Nurturing, Challenging, and Not All Hard Work

Posted on September 11, 2016 by
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At Black Bulga, the experience of community provides vital support for members to be effective change agents in the wider world.


Innisfree Village: Lifesharing in a Service Community

Posted on August 24, 2016 by
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Adults with disabilities and residential caregiver volunteers share the challenges and joys of community life at Innisfree.


True Sustainability: Indigenous Pathways

Posted on July 21, 2016 by
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At Maitreya Mountain Village, mainstream pragmatism meets radical idealism.


The Bridge to a Greener World

Posted on July 1, 2016 by
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This Australian community’s bridge is a lot more than just a bridge.


Want an Ecovillage? Stay Put!

Posted on June 21, 2016 by
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How can we care for a place if we’re not there, day after day, year after year, paying attention?


Queer, Person of Color, or Low-Income; Is Cohousing Possible for Me?

Posted on May 1, 2016 by
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Some creative solutions are starting to counteract cohousing’s demographic homogeneity, but significant obstacles remain.


Intentional Communities: Something Old, Something New

Posted on February 1, 2016 by
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Intentional communities—people gathering to share life together, to discover meaning, and to have an impact beyond themselves—have been part of the human landscape for centuries. Many predate Christianity. Hinduism, Buddhism, and Judaism have all had communal aspects which many have chosen. Sufism (Islam), Protestantism, Anglicism, and Catholicism have had and continue to have thriving communities… Read More


The Unexpected Journey

Posted on January 11, 2016 by
1 Comment

A three-month living/learning seminar in alternative communities still resonates three decades later.


Getting to Community and Life after Community: Collectivism vs. Individuality

Posted on January 1, 2016 by
1 Comment

Togetherness and solitude, action and reflection—our lives give us times for each.


Three Kinds of Community—Three Kinds of Experience and Learning

Posted on December 1, 2015 by
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Whether with refugees, in the inner city, or in intentional groups, community holds life-long lessons.


Nobody Likes Bosses

Posted on November 1, 2015 by
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Even an anti-authoritarian household needs agreements—but who and how to enforce them is another question.


My Struggle to Legalize Sustainable Living

Posted on October 1, 2015 by
6 Comments

After nearly three decades of activity, a pioneering eco-community collapses under the weight of legal attacks by a small group of neighbors.


My Intentional Community and the Law

Posted on September 11, 2015 by
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Breitenbush has a long history of dealing with legalities and illegalities, from installing a volcano as their “boiler” and blocking old-growth logging to successfully petitioning for a zoning variance.