I am not going to work anymore and I am going to get everything I have ever wanted. I want to build a sustainable intentional community. I want to live a life of play and enjoyment centered on community and everything that I do helps to directly build a better life experience. I am certain there are plenty of jobs out there that are exciting and fun, but as for work; no more work. I am talking about the experience of working, exchanging time for money, then trading that money for your life experience has got to go. I want to cut out the middle man and make my work my play and my play my life. I am happy to give effort, sweat, energy and even blood at times, but I will not do work in a direction that isn’t aimed directly at growing my life experience. I want to create an experience of living that is free and enjoyable and I hope I can help you discover the same. I have a vision for a daily way of life that is simple yet expansive. I tried to combine everything that I love to experience into one setting as best as it can be done and also allowing for everyone else’s similar desires to be expressed. I want to participate in the activities that bring me joy every day instead of really only experiencing those a few times a month or even a year. I don’t want myself or anyone to ‘work hard’ for this, but I will spend every hour of my day creating it. I want to free everyone from the trappings of money, yet still participate in commerce. I want to try a different style of life that focuses on happiness and connection. Ive distilled this vision into the following mission statement which will continue to evolve as my awareness does.
“To create a living community of self reliance and interdependent cooperation based on three main principals: Responsibility of Food, Responsibility of Health and Responsibility of Creativity. These principals are to be developed and used in a community of peers of all ages, with specific attention to Aesthetic Beauty in our endeavors, and based on the understanding of impermanence as the natural law of the universe. This community is to be a living example of a sustainable way of life in co-habitation with nature with the expressed purpose of sharing the experience of each aspect in all moments for residents, guests and the liberation of all people.”
This is the outline for the principals that guide the experience of life I am looking for. I have a specific vision of what daily life will look like for me, but these guidelines allow for everyone to create their specific vision as well, not just mine. I picture a beautiful day punctured with moments of joy, experienced by being totally present over a cup of tea, tending the garden, visiting the special spots in the landscape, the hubbub of community meals, someone playing music across a field, meditating so that all beings may experience happiness, taking care of my body with long soaks or massage, ecstatic play with children and toys, having deep conversations, creating specialty health foods, helping people see new solutions for growth and resolution of problems, feeding everyone with food, love and a dream life that is enjoyed through devotion. I want to play hard at creating this and so much more. So many people want to work hard to enjoy even less, but the universe is always saying YES! Yes to more, yes to joy, yes to overcoming pain and suffering, yes to love, yes this doesn’t have to be hard. Do I have expectations and wild ideas that won’t turn out, of course, but aiming the purpose of a way of life at this idea, at the expansiveness and inclusion of everything rather than our current alternatives resonates so deeply with me, that this community is a foregone conclusion. I can only begin to dream at the beautiful process of its creation, with the beautiful people I know who want to help me now, and those new people that will join in the future. The explosion of joy and accumulation of energy will hardly be contained in manifesting the best outcome for all.
The purpose of creating this sustainable community is to give people a choice at how to go about their daily lives. If a person is given a roof over their head and food to eat in exchange for 2-3 hours of their time a day; then encouraged to grow, create and expand for the rest of their day, what possibilities are available? This type of direct living experience is the cornerstone of what I wish to create, instead of the cornerstone being money and control. There are other communities that are doing this in various degrees. Some create a mix of community and still holding a job outside to pay for it, while others aim at a more integrated local experience. I wish to create a local experience for all members where we not only sustain ourselves physically, but also run cottage businesses to grow our community and provide a degree of finical freedom to each person so they may live the fullest expression of their purpose. I believe this system will create freedom and happiness for anyone living here as well as extending that intention into the local community around us. I am traveling the world to study existing communities so that I may better understand my own vision and how to create it.
My very short practical vision looks like a vacation spot for people to experience this type of life. It is like a bed and breakfast tucked comfortably into a university, teaching hands on experience of how to work and play at the same time. I want to have multiple residences on the property of unique and wild design so that visitors and residents can cycle through the homes and always experience something fun and different. A few wild ideas I want included are a hobbit hole, a tree house perhaps shaped like a pirate ship, a living house of sculpted plants, and a Japanese room with an open air garden in the center with a stream flowing through the floor to the outside garden. We will have a large vegetable garden and fruit orchard that will supply us with much of our food and allow us to use the surplus to exchange for other foods we don’t grow. There will be a main house with the kitchen where everyone gathers for meals if they wish. There will be a Japanese style bath house for its lovely experience and the conservation of water. Included will be soaking pools, a sauna, and an isolation float tank. There will be a hall for community meditation, yoga and other group activities as people see fit to practice. Residents will be encouraged to build their own dwelling of their unique creation to further the cycle. We will aim to be mostly self sufficient, yet still bring in resources, monetary or otherwise from visitors spending time and from whatever services, teaching or creations are made for sale. I plan to bring monetary resources to start this place, with the aim that once it is established no more is needed, yet more may always be created.
I understand this is quite a broad scope, but I think living a life that expresses unlimited potential is a direction we need to embrace. I have spoken to so many people in my generation and they understand and desire some form of this expression at a very deep level. To begin living towards our happiness is our generations calling. With a new vision we can begin to live a different way right now, and little by little begin to build a better way so that others may have a choice. We may not be able to change all that we feel is wrong with the world, but we can start to outgrow it by living the way we want to right now and leave the rest behind. I hope you will start working toward your happiness now and join me in the future. Blessings and happiness to all.
-The wandering monk
Here is a slightly more detailed explanation of the core principals as I see them:
Responsibility of Food
This is the first fundamental pillar of the community. If you want a continued existence on this planet you must eat well. What to eat is pure choice as our bodies can handle consuming such a wide variety of foods. This variety has gotten many people into serious health problems due to lack of knowledge and body awareness. Creating a personal responsibility for what, when and how much food you consume is therefore a necessity. Consuming organic, local and nutrient dense foods will go a long way to solving many problems for most people. Food is the ground floor, without your energy source being clean and actually nourishing, it would be very hard to build a life of enjoyment and creativity if you are constantly polluting your body and fighting your digestive demands for energy.
Information and experience are key factors here. Teaching people about healthy food choices and then feeling the difference from eating this way is the solution I think will work best for creating sustaining change. Often people will attempt to diet based on guilt or body image, but only a lifestyle change to a sustainable and enjoyable way of eating will work. Without taking responsibility for what you eat it is very easy to consume toxins and poisons, usually for the most mundane of reasons: Taste and convenience. If you lose your foundation of health every aspect of life suffers. Once people have experienced the health and joy from eating fresh, local, organic, in season foods, grown with their own hands, investing their own effort and care into their food source, they will understand how delicious and easily available food can be in this system and the wellbeing that follows.
Responsibility of Health
Ultimately you are the only person responsible for your own health and body. To treat yourself with the utmost care so that you may have the greatest expression of joy and happiness in this life experience is your responsibility. Health is the natural state of being, and you must constantly choose to support yourself. Once the obstacles to health have been removed no more effort is needed other than to not place new obstacles in the way. There is only one state of health, a natural state of being, while dis-ease has many expressions. Therefore there are many ways to treat and cure dis-eases, but once this work is accomplished everyone arrives at the one state of health. Responsibility of health covers learning healing practices from all of these categories: Physical, Mental, Emotional, Physic, Spiritual, Psychological and Cultural. Bringing awareness to how these categories affect your health is my current area of study and my gift to bring.
We are each affected by these forces and with understanding can bring our health to its maximum potential by applying ourselves to self discovery in each area. Health is ultimately your responsibility and since you directly experience each sensation, having skills to heal and understand in each area is necessary. Not only must we develop our faculties in each area, but in taking back responsibility for healing we can move forward under our own power or understand when asking for outside help and guidance is best. Developing the discernment to heal and maintain our health is a personal skill and practice that we will develop here, incorporating as many practices and modalities as we have people to share them. This is the area of development in self awareness and growth toward enlightenment.
Responsibility of Creativity
We are each creative beings. Creativity is a force and expressing this inexhaustible source is important to living a full existence. Creativity is not merely limited to the making of things. We often miss-categorize creative people as only those who are artists, people who create physical objects, play music or have unique ideas. Creativity is the ability to create, which everyone does all day long. You continually create your existence here like a candle flame continually arises from the wick. Understanding and applying the creative power you contain is the focus here. To create something “physical” is the easiest expression as it takes form before your eyes. To create your own happiness, or mood; to create whatever situations or experiences you desire; this is also your creative power. Taking responsibility for everything in your life as a product of your creation is such a hard truth to accept and yet still a subtle concept that this will take time to understand and integrate. But once you experience and know that you are the sole creator of your experiences and feelings, this power can never be taken away from you. It is an awe inspiring and liberating knowledge. That all joy and sorrow you experience is of your creating and that the cause lies nowhere outside of yourself, lies in no external situation, but only in your choice of response to life. Taking responsibility in this area is the most crucial to understanding the root of happiness and sustaining it.
There is an aspect to human nature that is fueled and nurtured by being in community. With the growth of technology it appears that our communities have grown, that more people are connected than ever before. However there is a depth of connection that is lacking and by making community a focus we aim to build and nurture those deep connections. I would love to see the creation of a global family; building authentic relationships with your neighbor to realize the oneness of all. It is our goal to develop ourselves in and through community; to value our individualism and our gifts in relation to others. To learn, grow and share all that we have with each other and integrate into the local and global community at large. By developing interdependence we can maximize our potential. To put in the least amount of effort and receive the greatest gain can only be achieved when working together for the benefit of all. The function of donation applies strongly here as we devote ourselves to the creation of a better way of life. When the desire for creating our way of life comes from a deep caring and gift of your time and effort, rather than from need; the growth of community deepens, by helping others, you directly help yourself. Building community eliminates the need to do it all on your own and this frees up many of the hours of work and redundancy for each person to build a separate home, career and life of their own. By having one home, which is the community, you grow with the support of many people, to expand your potential. This home community will not be a conformist community as we understand the aspects of individuality and aloneness that are an integral part of existence. The community serves to promote the highest potential for each individual and maximize connection, love and growth.
I believe surrounding yourself with as much beauty as possible creates a fundamental difference of experience. Natural beauty of environment is just as important as the created beauty of objects and designed spaces. Creating consciously can transform the ordinary into something beautiful with dedication of intention. When entering a new environment you can feel its vibration. Beauty resonates very high and creates a peaceful relaxing experience. Not much is required to make a space beautiful, it is also how you interact and care for a space that helps create the beauty. Therefore dedication to beauty will be a core principal in designing and managing all buildings and objects brought into the environment. We will include a wide range of styles so that everyone’s unique taste of beauty can be experienced, however aesthetic beauty is a mindset followed by form. Keeping all spaces clutter free so that energy may move freely and being conscious of what objects are being brought to the space so that everything helps serve a purpose and adds to the beauty and function. Art and art projects, especially those being created from our dedication to creativity, will help define our space and help it grow. I would like to mix nature with minimalism to create a spa/retreat like environment that emphasizes beauty and relaxation.
*I have built and refined these ideas over the last few years by my self learning and the insights of others when asking them how their ideal community would be. I am always looking for more refinement, ideas and blind spots. If I have overlooked or left something out please bring it to my attention so this expression may grow and work for all. Thank you