On Building Intentional Communities

If you don’t like the way things are…. Start a town. It sometime seems as if things are grim and change could just never come about in the places where we live. With extreme divide in our government, a broken food system and environmental degradation continuously getting worse, what can we possibly do to change things? I say, start an ecological community with all of your favorite people in the most ideal climate where conscious choice and intentional design are integral to your decision making. I will guide you on my journey in Costa Rica in creating community on a crystal clear river with deep pools where dripping fruit trees line the roads and neighbors care about each other and are dedicated to improving our world.

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  1. I truly wish the best for such people, but I sense a deep well of naiveté. Libertarians gather so much of their teleology from the American colonial experience. Despite the native wars, much of the North American continent was effectively unoccupied due to the late arrival of humanity, the preceeding spread of European diseases, and the nomadic behavior of many tribes. This generated a lasting sociobilogical impulse in many North Americans of colonial lineage.

    To many white Americans, community is a Platonic concept, a thing built where you find a plot and made to order by the individuals who choose to join. And although this is a true part of the story, it misses an entire dimension of the human experience. Community is also born out of necessity, response to environment, and outside pressue.

    Perhaps the mesoamerican people would appreciate the flight of white Americans to their ancestral land. Perhaps they won’t. In either case, one can safely assume the interaction of any such community to the surrounding people is a high level concern. Similarly, being off the radar of a geopolitical superpower is simply impossible and relationships for, against, or carefully “neutral,” will eventually be necessary.

    One does not simply build a community in a foreign land these days. The world is a shrinking place. Even the self-imposed primitives of the Anabaptist diaspora are realizing their days are numbered. Regardless of the claims of various states, Chinese people believe the land of their forefathers to belong to them, so too the Indians, the Israelis, the Arabs, the Persians, the Africans, Japanese, so on and so forth. Alone in the world now are the individual Europeans and their diaspora brethren who feel themselves entitled to both no land and any land they feel capable of reaching. The ideological tribe, born in the harshest winters and long shielded from foreign population pressure by that same force, now faces its final generations.

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