Re: Christian Cohousing & Beyond Cohousing
From: Gorwydd (
Date: Sun, 7 Sep 1997 11:31:44 -0500
on 97-09-06 17:12:10 EDT, maikano [at] (Michael Mariner) writes:

>Cohousing is probably *not* the correct word for what I personally am 
>looking for.  Cohousing is a huge step towards a nurturing, cooperative 
>lifestyle, but it's only a first step.  As old-timers to this list may 
>remember, I'm writing a book that portrays a vision of what will evolve 
>beyond cohousing.  The current working title is "Creating Belonging:  
>Villages, Neighborhoods and Tribes in the 21st Century."  Basically I 
>believe society will benefit enormously if neighborhoods evolve into 
>tribal villages that are networked and interlinked and that use 
>appropriate technology and sustainable cultural political, social, 
>economic and environmental structures.  These neighborhood tribes will be 
>highly diverse and will over time transform our culture from the true 
>grassroots.  Neighborhoods should be the true grassroots of the culture 
>-- not cities, counties and states which are too large to identify with 
>and feel empowered by.

This sounds like a great idea. I'd love to be on the list when you complete

It also makes me think of these issues/concerns:

I personally love cities, and aparently so do billions of other people....
how else do cities come into existance... Having grown up in a small town I
love the ability to walk down the block to visit a friend versus driving
several miles (less people in cities own cars than in the country), and go to
museums, libraries, countless centers for learning, anything I want within
walking distance. And people everywhere to talk to, from all walks of life.
My new home is far more diverse and accepting than my old one.

The shared physical and social resources in cities could offer far better
oportunities (stress on "opportunities"... versus reality) for living
sustainably than in small villages. Our typical American tradition of
spreading out and developing as much of the untamed land as we can means
than, even though we make up only about 5% of the world population, we
consume about 40% of the world's resources. 

Yet those from less blessed origins who develope the ability to, keep
abandoning cities to build the American Dream of having two cars, 2.4 kids, a
dog and a cat, and their "own" house on their "own" piece of land.  Those who
can afford to run off to create ideal settings in the countryside where they
can build safe walls around themselves... rather than stay and get involved
in making their immediate world a better place. 

Ghettos are created not by who moves in, but by who moves out. 

Roxbury/Dorchester were once affluent towns, but the residents would not
tolerate the influx of minorities and began to move further out, leaving an
economic sinkhole behind them as bussnesses left with them.
I love the country, it's openness, it's cleaness, it's quietness....having
been raised in a rural farming area I know it very well. But because of this
I am also adamant that we need to preserve it for the future and stop further
unneccessary developement. In my own hometown the fields I used to play in as
a kid are now sprawling developements of large single family homes... most of
whom commute to Boston for work but won't live there. There is now a large
dumping ground near Walden Pond in Lincolm where Ralph Waldo Emerson used to
ponder his philosophical love of Nature, and "strange smells" have recently
been reported coming from the water.

Japan is an excellent example of preserving nature. The limited size of the
island should have been totally overdeveloped by now if they were following
our example. But they have become the masters of living in small spaces and
dealing with each other, with a population in Tokyo of 30,300,000 people
(that's a 1/4 the whole country) versus 7,322,500 in New York City. Yet the
standards of living in Tokyo is in some ways the better of the two, it's
cleaner and safer (though agreably more expensive expensive), and better
managed. They may live in tight quarters, but because of it the island is
full of beutiful natural areas for vacationing.

We in America are spoiled with space... but it's still limited. As an
architectural intern I am faced with the moral dilema of ...  "do we really
need any more buildings when there are already so many and where the building
industry uses up far more natural and energy resources than all the other
industries combined."  It's believed that eventually the east coast from
Boston to Washington D.C. will be one giant "sprawl" as depicted in the
near-future sci-fi novels of William Gibson.
What are your personal opinions of city versus country?

How can those who cannot afford to move to the more "desirable" locations and
purchase into intentional lifestyles or communities benefit from your
proposals... how can we create villages within existing urban fabricks...
villages that may not be based on or limited to physical or economic borders?
In other words, how do we changes cities to fit your view rather than abandon
them altogether?

just my 2 cents (times a hundred or something)

-Allen Howell

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