Twin Oaks

On July 21, 2012, the Love Bus arrived at Twin Oaks Community, a Commune in central Virginia. It has existed since 1967 and today it relies greatly on the income that its hammock and tofu industry attract. Other industries at Twin Oaks include indexing books and seed growing. The industry here is a unique aspect, where members can choose from a variety of jobs.

The warehouse where Twin Oaks keeps their finished hammocks.

Every week forty-two hours are required from each member to work throughout Twin Oak’s domestic and business sectors. The income that is generated from its member’s is completely shared. In return, its basic needs such as land, buildings, vehicles, housing, food, health care, etc. are covered.

Ninety people reside at Twin Oaks, but only thirty percent of their food is grown on location. In affect, more of their groceries are purchased than grown, which adds to their cost of living. In addition, their monthly electric bill is approximately ten-thousand dollars.

Bicycles are used frequently to get around the grounds at Twin Oaks.

Twin Oaks has a great space for music. Just recently they purchased new musical instruments after someone had stolen musical equipment from one of their recreational areas. The music room at Twin Oaks is one area that it is acceptable to smoke marijuana in. Other areas of Twin Oaks possess rules against smoking in and around them.

At Twin Oaks they will name many things differently.  Our tour guide, Wizzard, was able to give us names of almost anything that you could point out.  Every cow and building were easy to point out.  This individuality is stressed by more members than it is by others. One member goes as far as to identify himself as IP, or Individual Person.

At Twin Oaks there is a strong sense of community. The tour guide even described Twin Oaks as “the island of misfit toys,” where one may once have had a hard time fitting into mainstream society, but since then have found a community at Twin Oaks where they can thrive.

The tolerance of the community is unlikely to be found in American mainstream society. For example, public nudity is tolerated to a greater degree (toplessness is acceptable most times). Also, individuals who don’t shower regularly may also be tolerated. In addition, there exist a considerable number of young polyamorous individuals, as well as married couples with families.

Although the behavior that is exhibited at Twin Oaks is not very different than in mainstream society, the safety that is created by its members is unique. At Twin Oaks, a safe setting is created where one can be self expressing and welcoming of others. There are many taboos in mainstream society and threats that come with living so anonymously within large urban areas. It is this aspect that the Love Bus values, and which makes Twin Oaks another loving place to be.

Wizzard, the tour guide for our group at Twin Oaks.

One Response to “Twin Oaks”
  1. Salvatore says:

    Great post. One wonders what the world could be like. Also BIKES!!!

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