33 episodes

Take an inside look at the beautiful and messy realities of creating and sustaining an intentional community. Enjoy useful and inspiring stories to support you on your journey towards resilience, sustainability, and connection.

Join community builder Rebecca Mesritz for interviews with experts in a variety of topics related to living communally --- from governance and decision making to ownership models, from navigating coparenting to navigating finances, from how to find your people to how to actually live with them.

Learn more and support at ic.org/podcast

Inside Community Podcast Inside Community

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 52 Ratings

Take an inside look at the beautiful and messy realities of creating and sustaining an intentional community. Enjoy useful and inspiring stories to support you on your journey towards resilience, sustainability, and connection.

Join community builder Rebecca Mesritz for interviews with experts in a variety of topics related to living communally --- from governance and decision making to ownership models, from navigating coparenting to navigating finances, from how to find your people to how to actually live with them.

Learn more and support at ic.org/podcast

    #026: Preventing and Mending the Fissures with Dr. Jessica Plancich Shinners

    #026: Preventing and Mending the Fissures with Dr. Jessica Plancich Shinners

    We're closing out our second season with an examination of how to navigate inevitable interpersonal conflict and move towards restored connection. Social architecture can be what makes or breaks a community, business, or organization. How we process our own pain and trauma and interact with the trauma of others offers rich opportunities for growth and learning. In this conversation with Dr. Jessica Plancich Shinners we cover emotional hygiene, strategies for reconnection, the importance of humility and validation, when to ask for help, and when to call it quits.



    Dr. Jessica Plancich Shinners, MA, MFT, Ed.D. is a social architect, community builder, and leadership expert who teaches leaders and organizations how to operate at their highest potential and resiliency by truly serving people, planet, purpose, and profit.

    With a Master’s in clinical psychology, a doctorate in Organizational Leadership (Ed.D. Pepperdine University), and 20-year psychotherapy practice, she applies a whole human approach to consulting that nurtures body, mind, and spirit so the wisdom of the heart can be awakened. After years of witnessing the limitations of Western psychology, Jessica sought training in Eastern approaches to healing and wellness. With certifications as a yoga and qi gong instructor and massage therapist, she utilizes a holistic and somatic approach to her work.

    Her penchant for social entrepreneurialism has led Jessica to consult for nonprofits, grassroots movements, start-ups, major corporations, and their leaders, helping align them with their core values and serve the greater good. The co-founder of an eco-village in San Diego, CA (theemeraldvillage.com), she is steeped in collaborative thinking and decision making, incorporating what she has lived, learned, and tested herself. The reclamation of our communities at the local level, she believes, is the solution to the panoply of problems we find ourselves in – ecologically, economically, and socio-politically. 

    Jessica has had the honor of learning from countless teachers- whether clients, mentors, professors, or guides. She humbly recognizes that so many of the healing traditions she has studied were gifts given from native people with an unencumbered connection to creation. Jessica strives to deeply embody and pay homage to their wisdom by passing it on to her clients. 

    https://fiercegraceconsulting.com/



    SUMMER FUN!


    Full Bloom at the Emerald Village in San Diego, CA
    Twin Oaks Community Conference in Virginia

    Books and Resources Mentioned:


    The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization by Peter Senge



    If you want to learn more about interpersonal relating and conflict resolution in community or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. 



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠

    • 1 hr 34 min
    #025: Embracing Diversity and Inclusion with Crystal Byrd Farmer

    #025: Embracing Diversity and Inclusion with Crystal Byrd Farmer

    There’s a rich opportunity to push the needle forward when it comes to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, but navigating Race, Class, Privilege, Ability, and all the ways folks face different levels of adversity can be vulnerable and uncomfortable.  Sometimes we need support to know what to ask for, how to be better allies, and to push us to grow in our capacity to accept others… and recognize our own blindness to our priviledge.  In this conversation with Diversity Consultant, Crystal Byrd Farmer we cover code switching, how to have safe conversations, microagressions, call out culture, hidden diversities, tools and resources, and how to create communities and spaces that are welcoming to all people.





    Crystal Byrd Farmer is an engineer turned educator, organizer, and speaker. She attended University of South Carolina and received dual degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Russian Studies. After working in engineering for six years, Crystal became a freelance technical writer and eventually found her way into the world of self-directed learning and intentional communities. Crystal has been active in the intentional communities movement for over six years and serves on the board of the Foundation for Intentional Community and Co-President of the BIPOC Intentional Community Council.  She is the former website editor for Black & Poly and is active in her local polyamory community. In 2022 she served as the committee moderator for PolyamProud.

    Crystal’s day job is as owner and facilitator of Gastonia Freedom School, an Agile Learning Center for children with disabilities. She lives in Gastonia, NC and has one daughter.





    Books and Resources We Mentioned:


    ⁠The Token: Common Sense Ideas for Increasing Diversity in your Organization⁠ by Crystal Byrd Farmer
    ⁠Stamped From The Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America⁠ by Ibram X. Kendi
    ⁠White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism⁠ by Dr. Robin DiAngelo
    ⁠Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor⁠ by Layla Saad
    ⁠My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies ⁠ by Resmaa Menakem
    Racial equity tools ⁠https://www.racialequitytools.org/⁠
    ⁠The Four Agreements⁠ by Don Miguel Ruiz



    If you want to learn more about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in community or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. 



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    ICP theme by Rebecca Mesritz



    We are so grateful to for our show's sponsors:

    Caddis Collaborative - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠caddispc.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    CohoUS - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠www.cohousing.org⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Communities Magazine - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠gen-us

    • 1 hr 10 min
    #024: Community Supported Birth with Monique Gauthier

    #024: Community Supported Birth with Monique Gauthier

    Bringing new life into the world requires levels of support practically unheard of in modern, western culture... unless you've cultivated community that is up for the task! Seasoned midwife and communitarian Monique Gauthier joins us today to help us envision birth from a deeply held and conscious space that brings about the creation of new culture on the planet. We’ll cover the fascinating intersection of natural birth practices with the communities movement, how women and families can be supported through pregnancy, birth, and postpartum times, rites of passage around birth, and even how various types of loss can be held with tenderness and love. 

    Monique Gauthier has been a midwife in the U.S and Canada for 30 years.  She has lived in intentional communities for most of her adult life.  She currently lives in Auroville, in Southern India.  She was faculty for Living Routes, which ran college-level programs in ecovillages such as Findhorn, Auroville and Thích Nhất Hạnh’s Plum Village, in France.   She has  produced  the documentaries "Follow The Dirt Road; An Introduction To Intentional Communities in The 1990’s"  and "Birthing Peace", about her mindful water births. She calls herself a “cultural midwife” who is tending to the birth of a conscious culture. She leads workshops and coaches for empowered birth, conscious families,  mindfulness, and other mind-body-spirit topics. You can find her upcoming courses and offerings at 

    www.Monique-Gauthier.com 



    BOOKS mentioned:

    The First Forty Days by Heng Ou

    https://motherbees.com/pages/the-first-forty-days

    The Fourth Trimester by Kimberly Ann Johnson

    https://kimberlyannjohnson.com/the-fourth-trimester/



    If you want to learn more about birthing in community or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠.



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    ICP theme by Rebecca Mesritz





    We are so grateful to for our show's sponsors:

    Caddis Collaborative - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠caddispc.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    CohoUS - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠www.cohousing.org⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Communities Magazine - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠gen-us.net/subscribe⁠

    • 1 hr 31 min
    Bonus: Centering and Preparing for Birth with Monique Gauthier

    Bonus: Centering and Preparing for Birth with Monique Gauthier

    My conversation with Monique Gauthier was too full of inspiring and helpful information, so I created this bonus episode to share some of the wisdom that couldn't fit in the full length episode. Here, Monique leads us through the centering meditation she does with her midwifery clients as they arrive in her office as well as shares some very practical tools for expecting families to cope with and prepare for labor.



    Monique Gauthier has been a midwife in the U.S and Canada for 30 years.  She has lived in intentional communities for most of her adult life.  She currently lives in Auroville, in Southern India.  She was faculty for Living Routes, which ran college-level programs in ecovillages such as Findhorn, Auroville and Thích Nhất Hạnh’s Plum Village, in France.   She has  produced  the documentaries "Follow The Dirt Road; An Introduction To Intentional Communities in The 1990’s"  and "Birthing Peace", about her mindful water births. She calls herself a “cultural midwife” who is tending to the birth of a conscious culture. She leads workshops and coaches for empowered birth, conscious families,  mindfulness, and other mind-body-spirit topics. You can find her upcoming courses and offerings at 

    ⁠⁠www.Monique-Gauthier.com ⁠⁠



    If you want to learn more about birthing in community or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠.



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    ICP theme by Rebecca Mesritz





    We are so grateful to for our show's sponsors:

    Caddis Collaborative - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠caddispc.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    CohoUS - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠www.cohousing.org⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Communities Magazine - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠gen-us.net/subscribe⁠⁠

    • 27 min
    #023: New Visions for the Communities Movement with Daniel Greenberg

    #023: New Visions for the Communities Movement with Daniel Greenberg

    As we close out 2023, it's time to take stock of the Communities Movement and consider where we might be headed in the future. In this episode we are joined by new FIC co-director Daniel Greenberg, who brings his deep experience from the ecovillage world, as well years living in and researching international communities like Findhorn and Auroville to his visions for what is possible for collaborative culture, communities, and the people who live and grow inside them.



    In 1999, Daniel Greenberg founded the non-profit Living Routes, which partnered with UMass-Amherst to run study abroad programs based in ecovillages around the world. Over 1,500 students were transformed by these immersive experiences. Daniel left Living Routes in 2012 to start a new social venture called Earth Deeds, which offers online tools for individuals and groups to “onset” their unavoidable CO2 emissions and support meaningful sustainability projects. Daniel has been a leading advocate for sustainability within international education and the ecovillage movement. He chaired Sustainability Task Forces for NAFSA:  Association of International Educators and the Forum for Education Abroad, is co-founder and past Board Member of Gaia Education, served as President of the Global Ecovillage Network from 2015-2019, and is currently co-director of the Foundation for Intentional Community.



    Thank YOU for including the Inside Community Podcast in your end-of-year giving! IC.org/Podcast to donate!



    If you want to learn more about international communities, the new visions for the communities movement or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠.



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    ICP theme by Rebecca Mesritz





    We are so grateful to for our show's sponsors:

    Caddis Collaborative - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠caddispc.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    CohoUS - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠www.cohousing.org⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Communities Magazine - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠gen-us.net/subscribe⁠

    • 1 hr 7 min
    #022: Cults! The Good, the Bad and the Ugly with Jesse Stone

    #022: Cults! The Good, the Bad and the Ugly with Jesse Stone

    Cults get a pretty bad reputation in the mainstream world, but are they really evil? Or just misunderstood? Jesse Stone, co-host of the Cults I'd Join podcast comes on the show to shed some light on the upside of cults while giving us some helpful advice on what to look out for if manipulation just isn't for you.



    Down in the Ozarks, Jesse Stone lives and loves with her young son Solace, two dogs, and two cats. Jesse is an artist, writer, and maker, and has lived her life immersed in the wide variety of subcultures. Sharing these experiences through art and storytelling is her passion. Her latest venture is the new podcast "Cults I'd Join" with co-host Ameran Link, now rounding out its first year.



    If you want to learn more about cults and how to creating one or any aspect of community, check out the Inside Community Podcast sponsor, ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠The Foundation for Intentional Community⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. FIC is an incredible resource center with weekly events, online courses, classified advertisements, and lots of free educational materials. Podcast listeners get 20% off in ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC Bookstore ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠with code INSIDE20 and 30% off ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠FIC courses⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ with code INSIDE30. You can learn more about FIC and access transcripts at ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ic.org/podcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠. Your financial support of Inside Community helps us to continue to create meaningful and exciting content and I hope you’ll consider ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠donating!⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠



    Follow the show and see inspiring images and videos of community life on Facebook and Instagram ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠@InsideCommunityPodcast⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ - I’d love to hear from you there!  If this content has been meaningful or useful to you, please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts, and share with your friends and folks you know who are curious about living Inside Community.

    Super Awesome Inside Community Jingle by FIC board member Dave Booda ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠davebooda.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    ICP theme by Rebecca Mesritz





    We are so grateful to for our show's sponsors:

    Caddis Collaborative - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠caddispc.com⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    CohoUS - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠www.cohousing.org⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Communities Magazine - ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠gen-us.net/subscribe⁠

    • 1 hr 29 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
52 Ratings

52 Ratings

Cael_Kendall ,

Fun, thoughtful and thought-provoking

I’ve been thinking about intentional communities for years, and I’ve really enjoyed this podcast. But the episode that inspired me to write a review (and donate) was the most recent “Cults I’d Join.” It was so much fun! I laughed out loud more times than I can count, and it made me remember that yes, community is serious business - process and infrastructure matter…a lot! And so does cultivating that ephemeral quality of togetherness.

Maybe that’s matching tattoos or a shared song repertoire as Jesse suggests, or maybe it’s something else. And maybe it’s a little cringe to folks outside of the community. What matters is that it is shared.

Thanks for keeping the fabulous content coming. I always look forward to the next episode.

BetsyHoo ,

Such Valuable Content

This podcast is so needed right now! The diverse content is always inspiring and insightful. I love Rebecca’s ability to weave a variety of topics within the realm of community and the guests are amazing! Can’t wait for more!

Erinloveslola ,

Insightful and beautiful stories

I really appreciate the perspective Rebecca gives. She’s real and straightforward and I like her style. She breaks down what intentional community is and all the different ways people live within these communities. Side note: I’m also really picky about podcaster’s voices and audio quality, and I will definitely say the quality is top notch and she’s got a great voice that I actually enjoy listening to! Highly recommend.

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