Exploring A Futuristic Community Dreamed Up By A Guru's Wife

When people discuss urban exploration, they usually mean the act of revealing what has been hidden in plain sight around us, be it an abandoned building, a towering rooftop, or a long-forgotten tunnel beneath the streets.

But for roughly 2000 people, urban exploration has meant moving to and becoming a critical member of an "experimental township" near the coast of India's Tamil-Nadu state. Auroville is a city intended to be free from religious, political and hierarchical boundaries, conceived by Mirra Alfassa aka "The Mother" and designed by acclaimed French architect and visionary Roger Anger. It is a lush commune, part yoga retreat, part Kibbutz. For lack of a better description, it's like a real-life Dharma Initiative without the polar bears.

Though it seems like a series of Swiss Family Robinson style huts, there are plans for a full blown metropolis, spiraling outward like an urban fractal from an already constructed geodesic dome in the middle of nowhere. Intended as a home to anybody willing to participate, Auroville is a still-unfinished exploration of just what it means to be a city.

Categories: urban exploration

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