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George Roberts :: Blog :: The Farm, an Intentional Community

August 15, 2007


Been thinking on intentional communities, pricked by Stephen Downes here, and - as these things happen - the serendipitous rediscovery of Ina May Gaskin's Spiritual Midwifery (about which I wrote a wee blog here) because "we" are pregnant. Ina May and her husband Stephen Gaskin were founders of the Farm, in south central Tennessee, which Stephen describes as "the longest-running, largest intentional community in the U.S."

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I first heard of the Farm when I was in college, around 1975. The Caravan, which preceded the farm, was something of a hippy legend; we probably read about it in Rolling Stone or similar. Anyway for those of us who were too young to have been there but old enough to wish we had, the Farm was the model of the ideal commune. A place with vision and energy where new ageism was matched and bettered by hard work and real learning; the giant carrots were not grown by pixies. I don't think it is chance that some farm alumni were Internet pioneers and proto bloggers (Gary Rhine' Rhino's Blog, Cliff Figalo's current interest here and on the WELL), or that they regularly podcast the Third Planet Report these days.

Posted by George Roberts


  1. I remember someone from the Farm coming to stay in a house I lived in in London circa 1978-9. Ultra efficient and organised, had a short wave radio antenna rigged in the stairwell within moments of arriving and held regular nightly communications with home base about whatever mission he was on. I remember that at that time in my life I found the approach that the Farm had as all a bit too organised for me, these days I'd probably slip right into it.

    Congratulations, George, on the "we are pregnant" news above.

    Mark van HarmelenMark van Harmelen on Thursday, 16 August 2007, 21:56 BST # |

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