Commune: (n) a group of people living together and sharing possessions and responsibilities.
Many good ideas would work well if we could keep them out of human hands.
I have been a guest at five communes in my lifetime. They all shared certain attributes:
- A discovery of a separate and simpler life so as not to have too many moving parts.
- A realization that it was important to share common values, goals, tastes in food, and entertainment preferences.
- For some reason, an emphasis on male dominance and female subservience was thrust to the forefront.
- Children in the commune were normally very well-behaved, but looked a bit as if they had just gone through shock treatments.
- Money was eschewed as meaningless except that the surroundings were so sparse of frills that it was obvious that someone in the commune was lusting for a Snickers bar.
- There was a fear in the air that they would be exposed as unhappy, so they were overly careful about what they said.
The reason communes don’t work is the same reason that half the marriages in the country end up in divorce: we don’t always clump well.
We are too intelligent, too independent and too selfish from our jungle roots to be totally trusted to evenly slice the loaf of bread among four souls.