The Power of Hope—Bringing Community Together

Over here at Cathedral Park Cohousing we are strong believers in the power of hope. Hope not as an idle wish, but hope as a verb, as they say; hope as a companion to work, hope as the glimmer of deeper truth that keeps us rolling up our sleeves to bring the shared dream of a reciprocal, diverse and dynamic community to life in Portland’s Cathedral Park neighborhood. 

One of the things I am most looking forward to about our community is our Common Room, and the conversations we will dig into when we’re sitting in comfy chairs on the corner of Edison and Burlington Streets in North Portland. Over the past year, as we have worked on bringing community together, largely over Zoom Happy Hours and business meetings, I have come to truly appreciate this interesting and diverse group of people, and I know we will have so much to talk about when we are sharing space in the Cathedral Park neighborhood of St. Johns. 

Building Cohousing on a Foundation of Real Conversation

It seems like every time we meet up, one of us is recommending a great book or podcast for the rest of the community to check out. Some of us listen on walks or runs, some while we are washing dishes. Personally, I don’t get a lot of time to listen to podcasts, but when I do, I’m usually in the car, and don’t have time to finish an episode before I get to my destination. Typically I will listen in bits and pieces over the course of a few days, but every once in a while I will find myself taking the long way home just to get a little extra time with whoever is talking through my speaker. 

Listening Together

The On Being podcast with Krista Tippet always keeps me in my seat a little longer than most. The episodes are full of interesting, intimate conversations with people I would love to spend a few hours with, and are always incredible food for thought. And often, the themes Krista and her guests delve into, make me think about Cathedral Park Cohousing and the beauty and complexity of bringing an intentional community into being. 

Community is Conversation

I particularly love the Future of Hope series, where Krista invites a past guest to talk about hope with a person of their choosing. It’s like sitting in on a conversation between some of the smartest, most thoughtful people out there. The whole series is worth checking out, but last week’s conversation between Ai-jen Poo (founder of the Domestic Workers Alliance)  and Tarana Burke (founder of the Me Too Movement) really struck a chord. These two incredible women talk for an hour about how hope, creativity, hard work, and “miracles” intersected in their careers to bring their work alive.

Sharing Resources for a Better World

About midway through their conversation, I knew I had to send the link over to our Founding Neighbor, Alicia DeLashmutt, because I knew she would appreciate the ways that Poo and Burke were thinking and talking about taking a new idea from a revolutionary spark to an accepted reality. As Burke said: 

I do believe that that planted a seed, that that hope is like a seed, and it planted it somewhere in the universe, and that was nurtured over time, and it gave birth to a thing, eventually….And that’s why hope is important, because it doesn’t manifest—you know, it’s not like a Chia Pet, right?

Growing Hope and Growing Community

While I am now pretty sure we will need a “HOPE” Chia Pet somewhere in the common room, the quote got me thinking about cohousing, and the ways that it is both an age old idea (humans have been living in community as long as there have been humans) and the perfect answer to so many questions in front of us now. From smaller carbon footprints to isolation and loneliness, cohousing and intentional communities bring people together to share resources and lift each other up. 

Intrigued? Contact us at Cathedral Park Cohousing to learn more, and register for an upcoming Learn About session! 

Category: Community Culture

Tags: building community, communication, living in cohousing

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