Living intentionally, together

July 30, 2012

Living intentionally, together

I have talked before about how I am living in community with about 14 other people. I share my sleeping quarters with 4 other women, ranging in age from mid 20's to mid 60's, and the rest of the living space is shared with the 14 others. We have a common living/dining room and a small kitchenette that we share. There is a mini-fridge, a microwave, and most importantly an electric kettle, which is referred to as "the jug" (as in someone is always putting the jug on). There tends to be those of us that are in at a reasonable time (before midnight) and those that are in a little later (earlier). Occasionally there are those that don't make it in, and they come scurrying in to change clothes and get to work on time.

There is actually very little disagreement among those of us living in the house. We have a gathering each week on Friday mornings to discuss what issues we may have. Here is the gist of the meeting; if you move or use it put it back, if you dirty it clean it, and if you take a shower clean out the drain.
Typically, the meeting closes with your mother doesn't live here. And we will have similar issues and concerns next week, discuss them only a little and move on.
Clearly, if 15 people who have little to no relationship with one another can live together with very little conflict then there should be a way for others to get along. About the only thing that we have in common is the interest in being at Iona. We come from different countries, we speak different languages and those that speak English as a first language all have different accents. We sat outside and discussed things we had been taught in school, and discovered the wide disparity in how many continents there are, how many planets there are, and how words are pronounced. Some are here for religious reasons, spiritual reasons, and employment reasons and simply because they thought it would be a fun way to spend 8 weeks. But the point of the matter is, with essentially very little effort we all bring our differences together and live together, peaceably.


How much effort would it take for you to achieve peaceable living?

This could be a thin place.