The city has the qualities of aliveness. It springs from the fact that each person in the city is alive, but also because all the people are alive together in the city – interconnected as individuals, families, groups and generations.

How vibrant is the health of your city? What do you notice about the vitality of individuals and all the collectives in the city? How are people sustaining themselves bio-physically /psychologically /culturally /socially ? Where is your edge of awareness about how the city connects in a sustainable way with its environment?

Architect Christopher Alexander believes that everyone can differentiate spectrums of aliveness. He proposes that aliveness arises around a center, and that centers are made up of other centers. Centers help one another, and “the existence and life of one center can intensify the life of another”. If you think of yourself as a center, consider how you create living intelligence in the city as you interact with others to create the invisible life of the beautiful (psychological) and the good (cultural) and the shared life (social) of collective support, order and strategy.

Here are three simple rules for applying Integral City Living Intelligences

1. Honor the dance of generational and seasonal life cycles in the city.

2. Integrate the natural cycles of developmental and evolutionary change within the city.

3. Learn how to zoom in and out at different scales to dance with the fractal patterns of the city.

When we become mindful of the myriad centers in the city we amplify our sense of aliveness in the city. We essentially come face to face with the ecological dance of our ancestors, friends, relations, strangers, authority figures, experts, caregivers, politicians, bureaucrats, artists and visionaries. We realize that being a center does not makes us an island but rather that we are intimately connected to the center of the environment we have collectively created in the city.


This blog is a prologue to the Integral City webinar conference  City 2.0 Co-Creating the Future of the Human Hive . We are inventing a new operating system for the city.  Click to get more details re the Free Expo and eLaboratory membership  scheduled September 4-27  2012. You are invited to attend and participate.