what do you get out of living in a commune?

Discussion in 'Communal Living' started by UnspokenThings, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. UnspokenThings

    UnspokenThings Member

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    i was wondering what the real advantages of living in a commune were?

    to me it seems like a lot of hard work with little reward. and in the end you end up with the same problems of normal society but on a smaller scale.

    havent people moved on from that way of living for a reason?

    please explain...
     
  2. cymru_jules

    cymru_jules Member

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    Yes, for convenience of what mainstream society brings. However - the more it seems to go down this road the greater the desire for other people to want to leave it all behind - even if this means (and it does) lots of extra work.

    Can you give some examples??? A utopian society doesn't exist, but you could get pretty close by living in comparative isolation - it depends what your idea of a utopia is.

    Ultimatly everybody is different, so it's not like pro-commune peeps are saying "this way of living is better". It all comes to personal preference - hence "this way of living is better for me/us".
     
  3. oldwolf

    oldwolf Waysharing-not moderating Super Moderator

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    Each community springs up from the desires strong enough to act on of each memeber.

    For us it's been the desire to be able to work together and spend less time on the daily grind of survival - working a job for something that does not give one the rewards that nourish the spirit.

    You see when we find that society is not like minded with the way we would like it - we must either do something about it or settle for what this society offers.
    And I for one will not - ain't worth it !
     
  4. rasha

    rasha Member

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    First off, I am sorry this ended up being so long but here it goes…



    There are as many reasons to live in a commune as there are people really, and each individual community is very different so it really makes this kind of question tricky. All I can speak of are what my reasons for wanting to live on a commune are and these are of course based on my vision of what an ideal community would be.



    The first benefit I see in living in a communal society is more diverse and rich day-to-day social interactions. Humans are social creatures. It is our natural state of being. Humans lived for the vast majority of our time on this planet in communal groups. This was generally due to cooperation for survival being more efficient than trying to survive individually. With the increase in technology that allowed us to more efficiently collect and store food, cooperation within a larger group of people was not essential to survive and basically it has led us to the current system and we have become more and more socially isolated and the people around you are for the most part not essential for your survival. An interesting thing happens when you live in a communal situation and your survival depends on those people around you and vise versa. You figure out very quickly that the current competitive system in which you gain when someone else looses does not work anymore. The quality of life of every person around you directly affects your quality of life. In other words your life is only as good as the lives of the people around you. People must take care of each other and really get to know the other people around them and what they need and want out of life, not to mention the difference in relationships when money and power are not an issue.



    The second major benefit is that living in a communal group is far more environmentally sustainable than the current dominant culture. I guess this really depends on the individual group but most communal groups are much more environmentally sustainable. When the group is able to produce a good portion of its own food and building materials with sustainable systems they not only do not support the current corporate system but also cut out a huge portion of shipping, processing, packaging and advertising costs that are tied to current commercial production system. The community also has the opportunity to be even more sustainable through systems such as earth building, green energy production etc. This is of course all depended on the specific community and which projects and methods they use, but the potential is very high.





    The third major benefit is a more economically efficient system. When people pool resources and share cost the cost of living per person dramatically decreases. This is especially true when a large portion of the available labor in the community is used to produce things the community needs to survive. In addition to this, when the community needs to purchase things they can not produce it is generally on a bulk scale which is cheaper and things like computers, tools, transportation, etc. are shared within the community.



    The fourth major benefit is more rewarding work. Lets face it. Most of us work jobs that, even if we enjoy them, we would not be doing if we did not have to have money to live. Our jobs are generally really separated from the rest of our lives. We spend 40 or so hours a week working for a company that reaps the rewards of our labor and only passes a small amount of the profit along to those who did the work in the first place. I have lived in a community and I can honestly say that although I worked harder than I ever had in my life, the work was much more enjoyable because I was doing what needed to be done for myself and the group as a whole and not to make a paycheck. I cannot tell you how liberating it feels to not have to have a job.



    The fifth major benefit is a healthier lifestyle. With the amount of chemicals etc that makes their way into our food and water supply it is amazing to me that we are not all dropping dead from the toxicity. Even people who try to lead a healthier lifestyle are often unaware of where the food they are eating is coming from. When you produce your own food you know where it came from, you know what went into the soil where you planted it, and you know what was added to it before it came to the table. It’s real food that you grew, not super processed and loaded with additives and preservatives. In addition to that, by having your own water supply, eliminating local pollution by using sustainable systems and getting plenty of exercise during your day you can greatly increase the overall health of the group.



    These are by no means the only reasons and maybe not even the most important, but maybe they will give you some idea of what some of the benefits of living in a communal society are.



     
  5. rainwater314

    rainwater314 Member

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    I agree with some of the reasons of wanting to live in a commune. My husband and I are currently toying with the idea. Our main set back though, is that we like to isolate ALONE with just the two of us. My question is how does that really fit in with communal life? I like the idea of living in close proximity to like minded individuals and working together for basic life needs like food and clothing, etc....but when the day is over we just want to be alone. Is it possible for us to live in a community like that, but be alone when the work is done?
     
  6. cymru_jules

    cymru_jules Member

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    A couple whom I know I trying to achieve the same, Rainwater.

    They havn't worked out a solution yet - they briefly toyed with the idea of living on a canal boat / barge before realising they couldn't really get away from peeps as much as they had hoped.

    There are people who live a sort of communal lifestyle - at least in the sense of ecological living - but alone. e.g.: http://www.judyofthewoods.com

    Therefore I conclude it can just as well work for two! Obviously the workload is spread across fewer people but then the amount of work to be done overall is going to be a little less because there are fewer souls to cater for.
     
  7. rainwater314

    rainwater314 Member

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    Wow! Thanks for the site....we are still going over details and I will post them as we come up with them. And I agree, more work for two but less to cater for. Thanks!
     
  8. Tribal Om

    Tribal Om Member

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    Check out the Intentional Communities website at www.ic.org. I'm sure you'll find what you're looking for. There are plenty of communities out there where you can have your own space (even your own house) while, at the same time, be part of the common vision. Good luck on your search!
     
  9. rainwater314

    rainwater314 Member

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    thanks tribal!
     
  10. greenman803

    greenman803 Member

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    I totally agree and thats why I want to join a commune in the UK. Screw the normal society, I'd much rather do hard work for my commune than some corperation.
     
  11. oldwolf

    oldwolf Waysharing-not moderating Super Moderator

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    2 old teachings :

    Sayin ain't Doing

    Act as if

    Blessed Be
     
  12. makihiko

    makihiko Official hippie since 2005

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    thats how I would see a commune, people live and work together all day then at night the go to there own little cabin or whatever....the people who want privacy would just have to build their own cabin...
     

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