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Watchwords — Authority

We know now that authority is vested in the office and not in the person; that the moment it is treated as a personal attribute it is forfeited.  1


Let’s draw our attention to a thoughtful idea about authority and how easy it is to forfeit when it is ‘vested in a person rather than an office.’


Persons in authority are authorized, and they that are authorized are under authority, holding and fulfilling a trust. They cease to be authoritative and authorized upon asserting themselves, governing upon the impulses of their own wills, becoming arbitrary and autocratic through the use of personal law. 2


This revolutionary truth imparted a new purpose to my role and responsibility as a teacher and to the oversight of my students. Free from the bonds of behaviorism and rivalry, we were bound by intrinsic truths of love and duty, of must and obedience. And we soared to new heights through increased self-government and responsibility working for Soli Deo Gloria. 3


Questions to Consider

  • How are the bonds of behaviorism seen in your schooling?
  • How has rivalry crept in between your children? Between your students?

1 Charlotte Mason, School Education, (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 1989) 12.
2 Ibid., (paraphrased).
3 From the Latin, Glory to God alone.