In various parts of the world, as well as within the UK, a large number of groups of people have chosen for safety or confidence to live in close groups, often over a period of time taking over a complete neighborhood. While this provides some cultural advantages it creates tribal differences between them and surrounding areas often resulting in racial or similar problems. Similarly within some communities such as Northern Ireland, splitting the education and living arrangements of catholic and protestants, has resulted in less understanding between groups and perhaps activities that a combined community would not have accepted.
Great care therefore has to be taken when considering any enclosed community. In some places, and the best examples we have seen are in the USA, some enclosed communities do work well. Some are in effect a large number of homes within a walled complex with a number of pools and a range of other facilities and a uniformed person on the main gate. Similarly we have seen large enclosed communities such as one for elderly people, where the elderly or retired residents take on all the community task, and the quality of life is good.
A living community can be little more than a housing association or group that everyone belongs to, or at the other end a corporation that own the property and where the members are controlled tenancies.
For the concept to work, members of the community must share ideals, like not stealing from each other, dropping litter and treating others as they would like to be treated. They also have to take responsibility for any guests they have. This means that if an enclosed and safe estate is created, children and old people are safe, but they have to make sure that anyone they introduce sticks to the same ideals. This is easier said than done, for example take a complex for elderly people, visited by relatives, while their children may choose to visit, the grandchildren may not be there by choice and be subjects of other cultures, far different from the ideals of a community.
It also has to be remembered that people are frightened of what they do not understand, or is different from them, so families within an enclosed safe complex may find their children viewed as different by other children at school. This tends to be made worse by the need for people within the safe community to teach their children to be safe when outside their safe environment.
Within an enclosed community, any objects that are enshrined when it is set up and to which all agree to is fine, so single religion communities, whether Christian, pagan, or other are fine as are different sexual practices, however they are still subject to both the laws of the country they are in and the biases and suspicions of others outside, who may have completely different views.
Living Communities can have considerable benefits, security, safety, no crime, friendly, organized social life, no unwanted callers, quality facilities always open, a feeling of belonging, and more. However as we hope we have shown above there can be down sides as well, if the project is not thought through, not just considering the current time but time to come.
Being set up as a New Atlantis trust may help, and we are always willing to advice or discuss ideas that you have for new communities. We do not publicize communities we are associated with.
In this section we look at why you may be motivated to set up a community, the positive benefits, and negatives or disadvantages and types of arrangements. These options are available from the buttons above left.