Results 1 to 11 of 11

Thread: Vegan commune

  1. #1
    vepurusg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    21

    Default Vegan commune

    Hello all, I hope that this is in the right section and that I am following forum protocol (please let me know if not).

    I'm working on designing a philosophy and education-based commune/retreat. Naturally, that means strictly vegan food, and education on vegan health and lifestyle for visitors- not all visitors will be vegan, but I hope they become vegan before they leave!

    The plan is for terms from a couple weeks to a year (in the case of some gap-year students). Most of the people in the commune will not be living there long term (just the teachers).

    Units on nutrition; vegan cooking and vegan un-cooking (raw food); arts and crafts; fitness, yoga, Tai Chi, etc.; existential moral philosophy; and critical and creative thinking will be core.

    The hope is to run this as a non-profit business (self sustaining, or even with the ability to grow), though if it has to be built partially using VC funding then that's how it has to be (still a good thing none-the-less).

    Teachers would live, eat, study, and teach for free (including health insurance and plane tickets to visit family), following monastic tradition (though this is strictly non-theistic moral philosophy and lifestyle, I think the word still applies). Head-shaving not required.

    Students would rotate through the school on various courses of study, paying tuition or on reduced tuition from work-study programs.

    Workers (such as janitorial, gardening, delivery, driving, and secretarial/administration duties) would be salaried, and would typically live off-site.

    Some visiting teachers and lecturers would be contracted.


    This would be a commune of philosophy in the style of the school of Athens or ancient Buddhist traditions; a collective of learning- less so like those along the lines of shared manual labour and agriculture (not that there's anything wrong with those).


    I'd be glad to have any advice or feedback!

    What kinds of classes would you want?
    What kinds of tuition do you think people would be able to afford? (which helps with budgeting)
    Is this something you might be interested in as a teacher or student?


    Any feedback or idea you have to offer helps!

  2. #2
    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Winchester, England
    Posts
    3,265

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Sounds good
    "I don't want to live on this planet any more" - Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

  3. #3
    Ch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Preston, Lancashire
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    That sounds amazing and anything I could think of you seem to have covered.
    I hope you're planning on growing your own food where possible?
    As for having only a few people live on site, surely you could expand that a little. I know I'd give my everything to live on site somewhere like that!

  4. #4
    deniselynn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    153

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    I would be interested in this.

  5. #5
    Puska17's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Cornwall
    Posts
    44

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Hi Vepurusg,
    Sounds like a great idea, this place in NZ sounds similar. These take people on the WWOOF scheme but not just for farming.

    http://gentleworld.org/about/

  6. #6
    vepurusg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Quote Ch View Post
    That sounds amazing and anything I could think of you seem to have covered.
    I hope you're planning on growing your own food where possible?
    We might have a small example veganic permaculture garden by way of landscaping, but it will not be able to provide enough food for everybody (mostly just herbs which are expensive to import and hard to find locally). This will not be on enough acreage to farm in any substantial sense, as it probably needs to be pretty close to transit and municipal infrastructure (land cost near cities in residential areas is too high).

    Maybe we can contract with some local farmers (a few more hours out of the city) to grow veganic food, but I'm not sure if that will be possible in the short term.

    Farming and self-sufficiency are not really the primary goals; it's an educational business focused on the memetic side rather than the commercial side of the modern moral conundrum.

    Quote Ch View Post
    As for having only a few people live on site, surely you could expand that a little. I know I'd give my everything to live on site somewhere like that!
    If it's successful, it will grow. The business plan is aimed to be sustainable and profitable in a growth sense, so that more people can have the opportunity to learn there.

    Right now I'm hoping to get a sense of what kinds of students would like to come out for a gap-year on a work-study program, and what they would need or expect.

    I made a basic survey on amenities here:

    http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/73GDXM3

    If a few dozen people could respond to that, I could get a better sense of what kind of infrastructure and operation costs I'll be looking at (everything adds up).


    Quote deniselynn View Post
    I would be interested in this.
    Awesome, thank you!

    If you could respond to the survey (above), that would help a lot. Passing it around to anybody you know who might be interested would help even more.

    Any ideas or specific feedback you could give me on the living conditions you prefer, or insight into what others you know find important would be great- or anything I may have missed.

    I need to collect a lot of data to work out development costs and ultimate profit margins to ensure that the business plan is sustainable (otherwise, change the business plan).


    Quote Puska17 View Post
    Hi Vepurusg,
    Sounds like a great idea, this place in NZ sounds similar. These take people on the WWOOF scheme but not just for farming.

    http://gentleworld.org/about/

    That's awesome Puska. Yes, I think I've seen them before; it's a great organization.

    This will be a little more business oriented and aggressive, educationally speaking- focusing more on philosophical education and morality, and less on the politics of corporations and consumerism (e.g. not anti-consumerist, but more neutral on that topic, and favoring vegan consumerism).

    Commercial arguments of anti-consumerism are easy to make (and it's great that there are many people making them!), but those matters are more symptomatic and nobody I know of is currently addressing the issues of a legitimate and holistic existential moral philosophy- the lack thereof being at the root of many of the problems (as Nietzsche would forecast)- partially because of internal divisiveness of the issues, and partly because of external sensitivity (it's a difficult matter to tackle).

    There are individual moral philosophers doing so, but just very little in the way of legally organized group efforts.

    I hope that all makes sense.

  7. #7
    Ex-admin Korn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Europe
    Posts
    4,830

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Head-shaving not required.
    Still wondering why this even was mentioned...
    I will not eat anything that walks, swims, flies, runs, skips, hops or crawls.

  8. #8
    deniselynn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    153

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    I think it was a monastic reference.

    I filled out the survey.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Petaling Jaya, Malaysia
    Posts
    772

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    I may have overlooked it, but where is this retreat planned to be?
    Europe? America? Asia?

    That might, e.g., make a difference whether warm water for showers is required

    Best regards,
    Andy

  10. #10
    baffled harpy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    6,655

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Good point Andy - I was rather cold when I filled in the survey so I felt that warm water was an absolute necessity

    I'm not sure I'm cut out for a quasi-monastic community as I am rather too fond of my comforts and privacy, but I would be interested to visit one.

  11. #11
    vepurusg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    21

    Default Re: Vegan commune

    Quote deniselynn View Post
    I filled out the survey.
    Thank you!

    Quote Andy_T View Post
    I may have overlooked it, but where is this retreat planned to be?
    Europe? America? Asia?

    In Asia. I'm looking at somewhere in Yunnan, due to the year-round spring-like weather (it's on a plateau at a low latitude).

    The highs during the day in the coldest part of winter are around 60 F, and in the summer it gets up around a blistering 76 F.

    Due to the year-round bright and intense sunlight, passive solar heating and proper insulation should keep the in-doors in the low 70's. Air conditioning shouldn't be needed during the summer due to the cool nights. Might need just a tiny bit of heating in the winter (although it doesn't get below freezing even at night).



    Quote harpy View Post
    Good point Andy - I was rather cold when I filled in the survey so I felt that warm water was an absolute necessity

    I'm not sure I'm cut out for a quasi-monastic community as I am rather too fond of my comforts and privacy, but I would be interested to visit one.

    Thanks harpy!

    I'm hoping all of the comforts and privacy can be provided; it's just hard to say what those are exactly, since they're different for each person.

    Warm water is much easier to accomplish when people are willing to share a shower room (which locks for privacy, of course), because more expensive infrastructure can be put into place and shared by everybody- like more advanced high-pressure low-flow shower heads, better insulation, grey-water heat exchangers, etc.

    It looks like most people would be willing to share a common shower room as long as they have a private bedroom and powder room, which is excellent (probably saves about $30,000, and lots of energy ).



    Thank you everybody, this helps a lot in estimating infrastructure costs!

    If you have any friends who might be interested, please pass the survey along; it's good to get as much feedback as possible.

Similar Threads

  1. Vegan Commune (Rural) - UK
    By daisykins in forum UK
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Jul 20th, 2009, 09:45 PM

Tags for this thread (If you see one or more tags below, click on them if you're looking for similar threads!)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •