What is an Intentional Community?

I’ve never really liked the term ‘intentional community’ to be honest.  I’ve always felt that it was some dirty hippie re-branding the term ‘commune’ first into ‘compound’ and now into ‘intentional community’.  But as I thought about what the house was, and what it is transitioning into the term grew on me.  Personally, I think that the house should be called “The Cincinnati Chapter of the Branch Davidian Cult” but everyone else said, ‘Nah’.  Whatevs.

Let me start with a brief history of the house.  For the past few years it’s been a share house with individuals renting out rooms and sharing the common areas like the kitchen, bathrooms, etc.  Everyone in the house is different in their own unique way, with their own points of view, and their own stuff going on like work, school, and friends.  The common thread amongst everyone in the house is simply that they all live in the same rental property.

But, what if you could change that?  What if you were able to get like-minded individuals all together?  I’m into gardening, living off grid, and all that green stuff.  What if we could bring people like that together; where we’d compliment each others’ way of living and provide support and optimism to some things that people think is weird (like collecting rainwater and filtering it into drinking water).

So,when I talk about re-seeding the front lawn with native wild grasses, or when we’re unplugging the fridge (this house’s single biggest user of electricity) and storing our perishables in a cooler in the cellar, I don’t get googly eyes like I do from most everyone else ever that is presently living in America.

I suppose all of that is just a way of saying that rather than living with strangers, you can live with people who think about things the way that you do, who want to live simply, and who like to do the same things that you do.  That’s all I feel an intentional community is.  People living together, not just because they all happen to be in the same city or that rent is cheap but, because they intentionally want to live together.

In theory of course.  In theory.  It all looks good on paper and sounds nice.  But it’s all about finding the right people.  And I think in a city of a million people, I’ll be able to find 5 or 6 others who feel and think the same way I do.