A healthy #community is a thick system of #relationships . It is irregular, dynamic, organic, and personal. #Neighbors show up to help out when your workload is heavy, and you show up when theirs is. In a rich community, people are up in one another’s business, know each other’s secrets, walk with each other in times of grief, and celebrate together in times of joy. In a rich community, people help raise one another’s kids. In these kinds of communities, which were typical in all human history until the last sixty years or so, people extended to neighbors the sorts of devotion that today we extend only to family. Neighbors needed one another to flourish and survive—to harvest crops, to share in hard times.When academics talk about this kind of community, they use the term “social capital.” The term is not great. Sociologists sometimes try to borrow the prestige of economists by using hard, economics-sounding concepts. The phrase “social capital” suggests that the thing it measures is quantitative. But #care is primarily qualitative. A community is healthy when relationships are felt deeply, when there are histories of trust, a shared sense of mutual belonging, norms of mutual #commitment , habits of mutual assistance, and real affection from one #heart and soul to another. – "The Second Mountain: The Quest for a Moral Life" by David Brooks.
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