I am doing some research on community and found this following section off of a website that is talking about Burning Man. If you have never heard of the Burning Man, it is an experience in temporary community out in the middle of the desert. Very arts driven, very spiritual and very postmodern and secular all at the same time. a friend of mine went out last year and i have not been able to talk to her about her experience yet, but it looks VERY interesting. the following thoughts on community come from the website and I read this and i feel like it basically describes what a church community should function like (on some level at least…)
(BTW: Burning Man is no where even close to a christian “thing” – in fact, if you head to the website you will probably read things that are pretty sinful. at the same time, you will see what the world is crying out for, both the good things and the bad things…perhaps we can learn something from what people are seeking after and giving a week of their life to live in the desert with a bunch of strangers for).
Because many people only know a world shaped by institutions, service workers and commercial transactions, they may not even recognize the signs of a community. Here are a few indications:
Communities are built on the recognition of the unique abilities of every member. Commerce and the public service sector define us on the basis of deficiency and need.
Community is cooperative – uniting us as varied members of one body. When, by contrast, we consume a service, we’re made passive. 50 million people may view a television program or consume a beverage in complete isolation from one another.
In the community, transactions of value take place without money, advertising, or hype. Care emerges in place of structured service.
In universities, people know through studies. In businesses and bureaucracies, people know by reports. In communities, people know by stories.
Community activities incorporate celebration, parties and other social events. The line between work and play is blurred and the human nature of everyday life becomes part of the way you work. You will know that you are in a community if you often hear laughter and singing.