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Life in Community


The Shadow Side of Community

Posted on September 17, 2019 by

The more friendliness we have towards difficult parts of ourselves and difficult aspects of living in community, the easier it will be to make the journey together.


Notes from the Editor: Exploring the Shadow Side

Posted on September 10, 2019 by

A higher standard for interpersonal accountability and care makes the effect even more devastating when feelings of safety, security, and affection in community turn out to be based on illusion.


Publisher’s Note: Facing the Hard Things

Posted on September 3, 2019 by

In order to create healthy, thriving communities that are replicable models for a cooperative, sustainable, and just human society, we need to talk about what hasn’t worked.


The Shadow Side of Cooperation – get your free download!

Posted on August 27, 2019 by

A natural follow-up to our Summer 2019 Sexual Politics issue, Communities #184 (Fall 2019) focuses on The Shadow Side of Cooperation. We explore problems and pitfalls, disappointments and betrayals, unintended outcomes of cooperative attempts ranging in impact from trivial to tragic. Authors’ stories describe the clash of idealism with reality, communication breakdowns, cultural patterning, internalized oppression, rights and boundary violations, founder’s syndrome, business and organizational struggles, power, ego, disempowerment, dysfunction, trauma, and strategies to address these and other challenges. Please join us!


Does Community Heal Trauma, or Reproduce It?: Challenges for abuse survivors living in community

Posted on August 20, 2019 by

Survivors of traumatic abuse face many problems in trying to form and participate in community. Trauma-informed community commits to keeping the survivor safe in wide zones of ambiguity, as challenging as that might be.


Do Communities Need Feminist Dissent?

Posted on August 16, 2019 by

In the midst of wider social movements in the areas of gender and sexuality, communities everywhere need a place for feminist dissent and a willingness to engage in difficult conversations. Dissent is part of how we build resilience together.


How to Stop Climate Change and Never Be Lonely Again

Posted on July 30, 2019 by

Empowered, sustainable communities are the antidote to isolation. And they are the pivotal technology that makes renewable energy, essential for reversing climate change, actually renewable.


Pros and Cons of Polyamory

Posted on July 16, 2019 by

Polyamory comes with abundant advantages as well as numerous downsides; a polyamorist weighs the tradeoffs, grieves disappointment and loss, and celebrates love.


I Survived a Dysfunctional Polyamorous Relationship and Learned Some Lessons about Love

Posted on July 9, 2019 by

Love is too strong an instinct to be dismissed, repressed, or restricted, even if it is not returned. The author recovers from a soul-crushing breakup.


Craft Weaves Together a Community

Posted on June 20, 2019 by

A story by Thumbs Cassidy, a person with a mission (in his case the promotion and construction of yurts) who travels from community to community educating and demonstrating. Excerpt from an article originally published at https://paxus.wordpress.com/2019/05/19/craft-weaves-together/ Through the haze of old safety goggles I struggle to read the fractions of an inch I was told to… Read More


The Triangle of Consent

Posted on June 18, 2019 by
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Recognizing each other’s agency, addressing power imbalances, and communicating with honesty and clarity about sexual desires and boundaries are all essential elements of consent.


Juggling Fire in the Jungle

Posted on June 17, 2019 by

Announcing a new digital book to the Community Bookstore By Graham Ellis Juggling Fire in the Jungle chronicles the first thirty years of Bellyacres: an unintentional community of bohemian jugglers who homestead a remote jungle oasis on the Big Island of Hawai’i. The author, Graham Ellis, was the founder of the Village Green Society, Hawaii’s… Read More


A Tangled Web: Sex at Zendik Farm

Posted on June 11, 2019 by

Was Wulf scheming, from the beginning, to gain sexual access to nearly every post-pubescent female on the Farm? Perhaps, perhaps not; either way, he got it. But that didn’t translate into “free love” for the rank and file.


Life in De Kersentuin: Research in a Dutch cohousing community

Posted on June 10, 2019 by

Student researcher from the University of Amsterdam, Yannick Kiesel, shares the core findings of his Masters Thesis on life in a cohousing community. The research illustrates a new holistic view on cohousing and its complexities. Thanks for sharing Yannick! My research focused on the sustainable and pro-social communities that tackle the adverse effects of growing… Read More


Sexual misconduct in the sphere of power: The nexus of gender, intimacy, and discrimination

Posted on June 4, 2019 by
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An unwanted, rebuffed sexual advance from a previously trusted community leader spirals into numerous, serious consequences in the victim’s personal and professional life.


Effective Community Justice

Posted on May 30, 2019 by

“It wasn’t the first time someone I knew had raped me, but it was the only time I had an adequate response from my friends and community.” A rape survivor living in community recounts her story.


Community Accountability: The Struggles, Challenges, and Hope for Community Action on Sexual Assault

Posted on May 28, 2019 by
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When we think of sexual assault and boundary violations, it is common to think not in my community, or the person I know wouldn’t do that. As a result, our communities become especially vulnerable to predatory behavior.


Cooperative Groups, the FIC, and Sexual Politics: Sharing, Learning, Healing, Persisting

Posted on May 26, 2019 by
1 Comment

In trying to undo generations of conditioning and trauma, we need to start with the mistakes, learn from them, learn how to love a little more, and try, try again.


Notes from the Editor: Introducing the Sexual Politics Issue

Posted on May 24, 2019 by

Sharing the truth is not always easy, but as #MeToo has shown, breaking the silence is the first step toward healing and toward the evolution of healthier sexual politics.


Follow the Dirt Road: A film, a ghost story and more

Posted on May 22, 2019 by
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Back in 1989, a long-haired, tie-dyed PhD candidate and a swimsuit model & guest video jockey for MTV set out in a VW camper van to interview and document 40 intentional communities. Daniel was interviewing ic’s for his doctoral dissertation on Children in Community while Monique applied her interest in video production to produce a… Read More


Sexual Politics, #183 Contents and Free/By Donation Digital Download

Posted on May 22, 2019 by

Directly inspired by the #MeToo movement, Communities #183 (Summer 2019) focuses on Sexual Politics. Intentional communities are not immune to any of the challenges or problems that afflict the wider culture. How can communities respond when confronting the sometimes harsh realities of human behavior and relationships, especially in the realms of power, sexuality, and gender? Authors share their stories about sexual assault and harassment; power dynamics related to gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual expression; attitudes toward polyamory; understanding of consent culture; creating fulfilling relationships by combating climate change; getting pronouns right; and a host of other topics. Please join us!


Are you curious about intentional community?

Posted on May 21, 2019 by

Intentional communities go by many names: ecovillage, commune, co-housing, housing co-ops and more. If you’ve spent time at one, you probably noticed that intentional community feels different than normal living. Some describe the feeling as a sense of greater freedom and belonging, room to experiment and be different, space to practice communication and collaboration skills,… Read More


Bodies in Isolation

Posted on May 18, 2019 by

Being immersed in mainstream culture and isolated from supportive, body-positive communities can prevent choice and body-awareness exploration. But living in a supportive community can make alternative choices and attitudes easier to sustain.


Your Community and the Law

Posted on April 30, 2019 by

Earthaven Ecovillage learns the hard way that it’s important for a community to choose its legal entities carefully, and to consult and listen to lawyers. A member shares some lessons from their ordeal.


Gain the 🦉Wisdom of Communities 🦉

Posted on April 24, 2019 by

Have you ordered your copies of the Wisdom of Communities 4 volume set? Each volume can be purchased individually👇🏽 or buy the entire set at a discounted price. Also available as an ebook! What is Wisdom of Communities? Since 1972, Communities magazine, published by the Foundation for Intentional Community, has been collecting and disseminating the lessons… Read More


What Can We Learn from the Amish?

Posted on April 23, 2019 by

Touch the soil, live simply, and be satisfied with “enough”: it’s worked for the Amish for almost 300 years and it can work for us as well.


In community, On the road – Dispatch #8 – Arcosanti

Posted on April 18, 2019 by
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I got a little out of order, but to wrap up my first cross-country tour I wanted to share a little about Arcosanti. I only stayed there a night on my way from Taos to San Diego, but I’ve helped host a couple gatherings there the last two years and I really enjoy the place.… Read More


In community, On the road – Dispatch #7 – Taos Initiative for Life Together

Posted on April 17, 2019 by
1 Comment

“As Christians we have to atone and reconcile the atrocities done in the name of God.” That was Todd Wynward, during his 2 minutes in the intro go-round of the first Southwest Inter-Community Summit. I’d been kind of tuned out when he started talking, but that got my attention. I need to talk to that… Read More


In community, On the road – Dispatch #6b – Tools for Collective Self-Governance

Posted on April 16, 2019 by

Gleaning Wisdom from the Nonprofit Democracy Network In late March, Cassandra Ferrera, FIC Board member, and I participated in a training by the Nonprofit Democracy Network titled Tools for Collective Self-Governance. It was a 3 day exploration in how nonprofit organizations working can better embody the change they’re trying to make in the world. There… Read More


In community, On the road – Dispatch #6a – Relearning We

Posted on April 16, 2019 by

4 weeks and 6 communities later My first cross-country communities tour of the year ended with a 3 day training on Tools for Collective Self-Governance in Oakland, CA with the Nonprofit Democracy Network. I got to spend 3 days with a bunch of badass organizers working for awesome organizations trying to make the world a… Read More


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