A geren is a (typically) loose order of friends bound to a specific cause and goal. They evolved out of old corporations and, as the need for them passed, groups of self-sufficient friends banded together and, for lack of a better term, set out to change the world. Some see the Martian Compact and the subsequent Solar Consortium as the first, true gerens, clearly demonstrating just such an ability.
The Anti-Homogenization Act formalized them, and gave humanity a purpose - to stay on its toes. Those who were not gerentry were called the content, and though the latter held safe haven on Earth, their life of safety came at a cost of the right to 'vote'.
In addition to expanded rights - literally the right to shape the future - gerents are allowed, and expected, to be at eachother's throats when mankind is not in danger. This of course was rather suppressed during the Purge and Diaspora, but the peace since then is filled with feuds and conflicts.
A member of one or more gerens is called a gerent, and the group as a whole is called the gerentry. While originally a human construct, many non-humans among the cerevate races follow the idea, with most structures actually predating their contact with humans. The Concord, also, has such models.
While this site will, at best, go over a few hundred of these, there are literally millions of them throughout the Universe. Most of them are rather small - with hundreds of members, but certain ones, particularly the missions, have millions at any given point in time.
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