Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

How the Gaia Community Works

Using the Gaia Community

The Gaia Community seeks to inspire and empower its members. But it also focuses equally on a spirit of entrepreneurship. The Gaia Community team operates under the premise of conscious capitalism. Basically, conscious capitalism is the idea that the ways we exchange capital, whether it be through our careers or our purchases, should reflect our values.

The Web site encourages its users to realize the potential in each of them and to use that potential in careers that will have a positive influence on the world. Whether it's leveraging a love for building to construct sustainable housing or a passion to care for others to become a doctor, the Gaia Community challenges users to connect personal values with the value they put in the bank. It also encourages users to research products to make sure their purchases aren't compromising their beliefs.

Now that we understand the philosophy behind the Web site, let's discuss how to actually go about using it. To start, a user's personal Gaia Community profile is divided into several sections. When you sign up on the Gaia Community Web site, you'll create a profile that will list your interests, favorite books and movies. You can post photos or send messages to people in the community. As with most social networking sites, you search for people with similar interests and "friend" them to keep up with their activities. You can post articles to be read by the entire Gaia network. If you click on the friends tab, you can see photos of the entire Gaia Community.

In addition to these basic social networking profile features, Gaia Community members may also list their goals, most influential teachers and favorite inspirational questions. So, instead of simply piling on friends with whom you might have little or no connection, Gaia Community members connect for a purpose. In fact, nearly all of the interactions of Gaia Community members are focused on spiritual inspiration and physical well-being.

In addition to the community page of the site, there are three major sections that allow you to interact with other Gaia Community members. In the Conversations area, you can discuss favorite books, films or music, or share questions and reflections to which other members can respond. You can also join groups for everyone from vegans and environmental activists to movie buffs. In the Creative Spaces section, you can create a blog or read the blogs of your friends or other community members. Here, you can also post photos and videos or send e-cards. In the Local Connections section, you can search for environmentally friendly or spiritually focused businesses or gatherings in your area. You might be able to connect with a local organic farmer or alternative medicine specialist in this area of the Gaia Community.

The local connections section also includes a section for online dating. In this section of the site, you can find your Gaia "Soulmate." Similar to sites like, Gaia looks to match people with similar beliefs and spiritual aspirations.

Although social networking is the primary focus of the Gaia Community, the site also features several additional branches to enhance your quest to change the world. What is Gaia Community's version of Netflix and how does the Web site teach you to create a yoga studio in your living room?