23 votes

Where do you get your sense of community from?

After posting this comment I realized I'd like to ask Tildes directly where you all get a sense of community from.

17 comments

  1. MetArtScroll
    Link
    I must say that if there is a place I get a sense of community from, then it is definitely tildes.net.

    I must say that if there is a place I get a sense of community from, then it is definitely tildes.net.

    8 votes
  2. [3]
    Atvelonis
    Link
    It's been a year and a half since I've been able to participate, but the community in Scottish country dance is surprisingly close-knit. The first time I went to a ball, I remember being surprised...

    It's been a year and a half since I've been able to participate, but the community in Scottish country dance is surprisingly close-knit. The first time I went to a ball, I remember being surprised at the emphasis people placed on individuals—they all knew who the callers and the musicians were (and were very excited about them), and they all knew each other. I guess there's a reason they call it social dancing.

    7 votes
    1. [2]
      monarda
      Link Parent
      I used to do traditional Scandinavian dancing, and really liked the community. The biggest reason I stopped is that the community was old and shrinking due to the health of the participants.

      I used to do traditional Scandinavian dancing, and really liked the community. The biggest reason I stopped is that the community was old and shrinking due to the health of the participants.

      2 votes
      1. Atvelonis
        Link Parent
        I'm watching some videos of Scandinavian dance now, and it looks like a lot of fun. I thought this performance in particular was very cute—and exciting! I'd love to give it a try at some point....

        I'm watching some videos of Scandinavian dance now, and it looks like a lot of fun. I thought this performance in particular was very cute—and exciting! I'd love to give it a try at some point.

        Scottish country dancers also tend to be a little older (relative to highland dancers, at any rate: their joints can't take all the hopping!), but from what I can tell the community appears to be stable or maybe growing. I joined a group in college that coordinated with our local branch of the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society for resources and events. I think the RSCDS has figured out that they need a pipeline to keep the traditions alive. They even offer young dancers little "scholarships" to dance camps in the summer.

        I'm a northern laddie, but a friend of mine from Charleston remarked to me some time ago that there was a surprisingly robust community for contra dancing in the area—populated largely by young people, no less (that's actually how she started before I dragged her to Scottish). Apparently it's pretty hip. That was news to me, but it gives me hope that the folk arts have an actual future.

        1 vote
  3. Macil
    (edited )
    Link
    Online communities. I used to be really active in various forums and even worked with others on projects like game mods, but then I went years where my community was just a Discord server with a...

    Online communities. I used to be really active in various forums and even worked with others on projects like game mods, but then I went years where my community was just a Discord server with a few old online friends. I really missed being connected to bigger communities. Not that a Discord server with friends is bad but it was just us; nobody new had joined it for years. Being connected to a community that provides a steady influx of new people is something special that I was really lacking.

    Then I recently got into VRChat and now I'm constantly meeting new people. I'm not a very social person generally, but I've found it easy to hang out in a public world, strike up conversations about the vrchat world we're at, people's custom avatars, etc, and occasionally find someone who comes to hang out with me or a group I'm with. My old friends joined me in VRChat and our group has merged with some other groups. I play VRChat with them at least every few days and I'm in a few Discord servers with them.

    Usually it's furry VRChat worlds that I hang out in. There's plenty of non-furries in VRChat too but I like the subculture and I find furry groups much more consistently friendly than others in VRChat. If you don't understand it, you wouldn't be terribly wrong to just understand it as a sort of avatar fashion subculture.

    6 votes
  4. [3]
    kyotja
    Link
    In my youth, I was part of an incredibly tight knit community. The church my parents belonged to covered every aspect of community one might need- identity, social net, friends, etc. After I left...

    In my youth, I was part of an incredibly tight knit community. The church my parents belonged to covered every aspect of community one might need- identity, social net, friends, etc. After I left religion behind me, the religious community dissipated and I was kind of free floating. It's a bit sad in that I have a sense of what a community could be, but haven't found anything to completely replace it.

    After a few random encounters I've built up a solid friend group that lasted through COVID, and that's the only real community with which I feel a real belonging now. I've tried integrating myself with some biking and tech communities, but it never really sticks.

    However, to your point I'll say that the community of friends I have now is from American bars. I met two friends at the bar, we started hanging out, then I met their friends, then we made friends together, etc. It took time but it does happen. We connected mainly over shared tastes in music, shared phases of life, and a penchant for beer that masks some loneliness. It's definitely hit-or-miss, and it relies on staying in one neighborhood for a few years which is less and less common in the American work environment.

    5 votes
    1. [2]
      EgoEimi
      Link Parent
      I share your exact sentiments. I grew up going to a small Asian church. The kids and parents all knew each other. We had potlucks and socials. We raised money and provided care for members who...

      I share your exact sentiments. I grew up going to a small Asian church. The kids and parents all knew each other. We had potlucks and socials. We raised money and provided care for members who fell gravely ill.

      I’m now atheist. But I miss that sense of community.

      I don’t get the same sense from my hobby or sport or tech or online groups. In those groups, we’re brought together only momentarily by a narrow band of interests. We are not interwoven together through families, deaths, weddings, and generations. Our memberships are transactional, mercenary, and fleeting. Asking for aid might gets people to throw together a hundred bucks or two, not a barn raising.

      I very much long to belong to a new secular church community of philosophy, where members commit to living in the area for a long time and build lives together (instead of just hopping to the next trendy metro) and putting real skin in the community (tithing some % of income).

      3 votes
      1. kyotja
        Link Parent
        Religious communities can be unique for sure, it's hard to find a group where everyone shares similar values and geography and form those deep social bonds. On your note, I joined a community for...

        Religious communities can be unique for sure, it's hard to find a group where everyone shares similar values and geography and form those deep social bonds.

        On your note, I joined a community for those who left my previous religion. There's a big point that everyone makes where it's near impossible to form a community around negative values, that is values to which everyone is opposed. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, but not who I turn to in times of need. Nor is the person who shares my interest in 3D printing, biking, or the soup du jour of hobbies.

        I also long to find a community where you find a group where everyone overlaps in space and values. Co-ops have seemed to be a close approximation, but they're usually laser focused and I haven't felt that same general sense of belonging.

        3 votes
  5. [2]
    Icarus
    Link
    I'm awkward so I don't really have a sense of community. Like you, I have been making an effort to donate blood but I'm terrible at small talk so I don't get to know the people at my local Red...

    I'm awkward so I don't really have a sense of community. Like you, I have been making an effort to donate blood but I'm terrible at small talk so I don't get to know the people at my local Red Cross. They do like my jokes though.

    I guess I could say I have a small sense of community with my work but I know my usefulness to that "community" only runs as deep as they will keep me employed. I used to spend a few of my walks each week de-trashing the park near my home but the garbage never ceased to stop piling up. I got to the point where I really wanted to sit at the picnic areas with a megaphone yelling at people to not throw their chicken bones on the ground since my dog loves picking them up and trying to swallow them as fast as possible. So I'm on hiatus with that effort. I'm thinking I will be doing Habitat For Humanity this summer if some projects get closer to my side of town.

    My partner is much better at striking up conversations with random people and befriending them. She walks the dog and smiles at nearly everyone who passes by, comes home, and tells me about so-and-so that she met at the park. Meanwhile, I walk the dog and no one approaches me. Probably because I don't make eye contact or smile at anyone.

    We have had neighbor friends in the past who ended up ghosting us. We are weird-ass people so I don't hold it against them. She is the crazy dog lady and I'm the opinionated guy with my head in the clouds.

    4 votes
    1. teaearlgraycold
      Link Parent
      If you can't think of anything to say I've found the phlebotomists are always happy to talk about blood. They need to stick around a little bit to do their record keeping, so you'll have a captive...

      Like you, I have been making an effort to donate blood but I'm terrible at small talk so I don't get to know the people at my local Red Cross.

      If you can't think of anything to say I've found the phlebotomists are always happy to talk about blood. They need to stick around a little bit to do their record keeping, so you'll have a captive audience while you ask about the machine you're hooked up to.

      2 votes
  6. daedalus
    Link
    Church has always been the place where I have found the most meaningful community. I have made multiple deep, and it feels natural getting to know new people because there are certain underlying...

    Church has always been the place where I have found the most meaningful community. I have made multiple deep, and it feels natural getting to know new people because there are certain underlying beliefs that we share. It's also the only context where I have made intergenerational relationships.

    4 votes
  7. 3_3_2_LA
    Link
    It used to be churches for me. Even if I don't feel connected to religion, just being in a church community felt nice! Also, a bit more specific to my situation, my university pairs ~20...

    It used to be churches for me. Even if I don't feel connected to religion, just being in a church community felt nice!
    Also, a bit more specific to my situation, my university pairs ~20 international students with an American family and we all meet on the weekends to relax, play board games or go on trips. That's pretty cool too!

    3 votes
  8. cloud_loud
    Link
    Family. I had a few friends at school, but I was never allowed to hang out with them after school, my mom was pretty controlling over that stuff. When I got to college I was having a really bad...

    Family. I had a few friends at school, but I was never allowed to hang out with them after school, my mom was pretty controlling over that stuff. When I got to college I was having a really bad time, so I didn’t even really want to hang out with the friends I made there.

    I’ve noticed a lot of people saying religious communities, but I’m not religious. I grew up catholic but my family was never serious about it. And I don’t get anything out of online communities, I can’t really connect with someone unless it’s face to face.

    The only thing that has been a constant in my life, the only people I’ve hung out with, are my cousins. Now, I have about thirty cousins on my mom’s side alone, but I only really hang out with like two of them. But, even the other cousins I don’t hang around often, whenever we get together it’s like we’re a big group of friends. That’s where I get my sense of community from.

    3 votes
  9. grahamiam
    Link
    Almost every single person I'm friends with I met through a hobby. A couple of my best friends are people I met playing video games 15 years ago or people my wife met through her baking club. I...

    Almost every single person I'm friends with I met through a hobby. A couple of my best friends are people I met playing video games 15 years ago or people my wife met through her baking club. I have good friends I've met through book/writing Twitter/clubs. Outside of hobbies, it's a handful of coworkers who remain after I/we leave a job.

    Now, that's friends. On the other hand, community shifts for me, but it's usually either video games or reading/writing, depending on where my head is at. Your original comment is about meeting new people - for me the first round of interaction is almost always done online now, and I don't see that as a bad thing. I'd much prefer to be able to vet people before I invest time on them, and I'd definitely be annoyed if someone tried to join me and a couple of friends on the rare occasion we were at a bar. I'm also someone who has always had about ~10 close friends and never felt the need for much more than that.

    I have a sense of community with my neighborhood in that I say hi to people and purposefully seek out local businesses, but I don't have a strong desire to be friends with people in a 500m radius. I don't know about you, but I've had some weird experiences with neighbors, and am fine with our relationships sticking with quiet+polite+distant.

    3 votes
  10. mrbig
    Link
    I have been part of the same spiritist group for the past 15 years. Most of them are much older than me, some are elderly. They're awesome.

    I have been part of the same spiritist group for the past 15 years. Most of them are much older than me, some are elderly. They're awesome.

    2 votes
  11. [2]
    joplin
    Link
    Do you have any hobbies that might have clubs of like-minded people? It's great that you're doing things to help out your community (and please keep doing those!), but maybe finding a group of...

    Do you have any hobbies that might have clubs of like-minded people? It's great that you're doing things to help out your community (and please keep doing those!), but maybe finding a group of people who share your interest in music, sports, movies, computers, motorcycles, weaving, etc. would improve your odds?

    2 votes
    1. teaearlgraycold
      Link Parent
      I plan to find some other cyclists in the area once everyone's comfortable without masks.

      I plan to find some other cyclists in the area once everyone's comfortable without masks.

      4 votes