Finding a way forward for Share-It.

July 12, 2022

We have just had a wonderful meeting with so many great people that have travelled all the way down from Germany, some from Austria and a few from the UK. These are people that like Manuela and I, found a desire to participate in something bigger than just their own needs. We spent several days in mostly great sunny weather finding new connections between each other and learning from one another what people really need and want in a community, and investigating what will be paramount to begin an Intentional Living Community.

I think that we all recognise some of the fundamental criteria for a way of living together. A listening ear, helping others, empathy, caring and positive input to the discussions. However, during the time here I feel we all revealed certain features of our personal natures, some great, some inspirational, and some perhaps that need the rough edges rounding off. In the main, the spirit of cooperation was good and things flowed relatively easily. I will try to highlight the main summary of what we saw, what we felt and what we decided to do to move the Share-It community towards a place to begin this project in the real world, in our own property.

As you may have read in the previous article, I believe that resources are one of the fundamental ingredients for a successful living community. None more so than the people, the right people! It isn’t hard to find people who would ideally like to live in a sharing community setting. What seems harder than we imagined, was that those people could fit together easily and without friction. Another observation for me was that certain people do not either have the confidence to participate fully, or they do not possibly realise the fact that without bringing something to the table so to speak, they will not really be fully accepted as a co-contributor. Sharing is possibly not easy for some people, we have been trained by society and media to be more selfish, not to think about others needs above our own, or at the very least those not of our own family. But Share-It is different. It needs the people to give without expectation of a reward, yet to be mindful of the needs of others so that everyone feels cared for. The things that people brought to share were in abundance and we thank each one for that.

An example of a sharing mind is when the group need to have food, a meal is prepared and shared with each member. Some will begin making the meal, preparing a salad or a dessert, bringing drinks to the table, washing the plates and cutlery. Others will bring the actual table to the place where a meal is to be served and others the chairs and furnishings. Imagine if a person were to bring out one single chair and then sit waiting for the meal, will this bring harmony of spirit to the others? In truth the experiences we have had have been very inspiring, very loving and very enlightening.

The thing that I believe we take away from this meeting is that a core group has been formed with those that are feeling very committed to the Share-It ideals. Some others I am sure we may never see again for many reasons, but basically because they are not ready for the leap of faith and openness that is needed for our community. Obviously over three days or so people may take time to get to know others before fully engaging or trusting them. But what I noted was that a few people are possibly not ready to be that open. We tried many ways to open the channels of communication and participation and in much of the time it worked well. But you can possibly hear in my tone I feel that a flow between everyone was not easily guiding the community ideas in a way forward that can result in immediate steps towards our aims. Those that have participated have given a real clue as to what we can expect from our community togetherness.

Moving on from the human aspects of the project we found another hurdle we have not easily overcome. This is the desire for everyone to live in the same type, style and size of property. In a permaculture sense, the problem is the solution, and we need to see what this dynamic will actually produce. Everyone agreed with the core ideas to do with practical resources such a water sovereignty, food growing space, energy harvesting advantages, and social and activity spaces for the community. Not everyone agreed with the type of personal accommodation needs available. I want to remind anyone reading this, Manuela and I have spent a huge amount of time, effort and resources (money mainly) to get the project to this point. In truth this is a kind of pre-trading expense, but as we were the only ones involved at the beginning, we accepted this as a loss in cash terms, if the project did not find a way forward. Our aims are simple; to find a place where we can invite many people to share and learn from one another the skills and talents and share our lives in community. Things that are appealing to most of you.

We showed the invited guests/possible community members a number of properties over the past few days. (There are many more to look at if you read the back blog of articles about many of the formerly considered properties.) In doing this we revisited one of the older ones in the hope that each person could evaluate the reality of what is available, what we could afford with the current commitment from members and what resources are really required for a successful future for the Share-It Community. It was evident that the summer conditions helped people see the reality in a much more advantageous way, the light and warm weather did not detract from the feelings of damp and cold that we had experienced earlier in the year. One of the resources I have highlighted is water. A large lake at the property helped us all agree with this philosophy, and we each took our advantage of being there. In comparison to the other properties, this had no lack of features, resources, space and room for expanding both the community over time and the possible revenue streams that members will invariably need to fund their participation. Meaning that those potential members that would add great value and skill resources to our community, could be included within that space to create their personal financial incomes for inclusion. Sadly none of us are very wealthy in financial terms, and few of us younger people can rely on an income such as a pension so we would need to work to pay our way. Sadly the world as it is currently set up, requires the need for the resource of money to begin trading our community, whereas in the future we hope to be not dependant upon this at all.

Currently we do indeed need a reasonably large capital pot to get started. About 1.1 – 1.3 million Euros if we are to use the well researched and developed ideas about how to manage this project. If we go for a smaller property we may still not have enough of the desired resources for a sustainable future, and many of us will still struggle to find income availability. Another reason to consider the BIG IDEAL is that one of the properties does indeed provide all and more of what we could ever need, and because of circumstances beyond the control of the owner, a price tag that is little more than that of smaller less equipped properties. If you think getting a bargain will be available like this in the near future, I wish us well with that theory. I am a person of vision, of determination and even of practical ability, and I have zero doubts about what my informed choice would be following this meeting here. What I believe we need is not simply miracles, but passion to see the Share-It Community do the work of providing an inspiration, and example to the world of what we can really do cooperatively. BIG is bold yes, but courage will see us living the dream. Obviously I respect the opinions of all the core groups members, we need people, lots of really clever and resourceful people to do this. I offer this blog as a way of keeping the energy level high and of sharing my thoughts about where we ought to go in our preparations.

So in conclusion, Manuela and I ask each of you to dig deep and see where the love of cooperation and community come from, and where it can build into a shared outcome. One, where the inspirations can lead us as we drive a new way forward, leaving behind the old ways of the world that do not create true happiness.

With Love and Respect and Peace.

Peaceful Warrior and Manuela Warrior.

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