"Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil, with good."
-- St. Paul

The Agape Order System of Rank




General Principles

As a fledgling organization, The Agape Order system of rank is undeveloped. The system will work itself out over time. What can be said now is this:

Within the Agape Order there will be Teachers, and there will be Students, as two distinct groups, as different individuals possess different levels of knowledge of Agape principal, and proficiency in practice. However, the basic Agape Order perspective on rank, its "philosophy of rank" is that just about every AO member, up-to-and-including its Founder, contains elements of both student and teacher. The only members not yet necessarily considered to possess elements of "teacher" are those who have not yet completed any training at all. Even a brand new student who has completed their first hour of teaching knows something they can teach to a student even newer than themselves, one who has yet to receive any training, at all. Moreover, some or all new students will have lessons to teach or information to impart based on their existing mastery of Agape culled from their own lives or other formal classes or education they've received. If so, these persons, too, would be considered to have elements of "Teacher" even before taking their first AO lesson.

This Agape Order "Teacher and Student as a Unity" perspective reflects 1.) the somewhat fluid nature of our undertaking, in that many of the situations and circumstances in which we'll be attempting to practice love will be new, unique, or idiosyncratic, likely resulting at their conclusion in our having learned something, in our having furthered our knowledge of, and technique in, practicing Agape, which is to say, in Living Love. No member, regardless of age or proficiency, will likely escape this reality, meaning, even longstanding and proficient members can and will continue to learn, 2.) Even longstanding members who are proficient in the Agape Arts can err. Error will likely and presumably lead to correction and a lesson learned. Hence, in both these cases even the Teacher of Agape remains in some measure the Student of Agape.

Many of the waters of the situational oceans we'll be attempting to navigate with our Ship of Love will be unlike any other we've traversed; thus will we be compelled to navigate anew and learn as we go, and thus, all of us in the AO in some measure are, and must see ourselves as, both student and teacher.


Titles

  • New members, and those who have yet to exceed their first and initial rank, might be called "Novices," "Apprentices," or simply "Students."

  • Longer-standing members, and those who have achieved a significant level of proficiency, might be called "Guides," "Mentors," or "Teachers," though as described above, they are also students, broadly speaking.

  • Those who have achieved the highest or near-highest level of proficiency, or what we might preliminarily call "mastery" of Agape principle and practice, might be called "Masters," though again, as described above, they too are students in the broadest sense.



~ Love Yourself, Love Others ~
THE AGAPE ORDER