The Amish: Lifestyle

Figure 1.--Here we can see an Amish family of nine children from Lancaster County. The photo was taken on Sunday afternoon when after church the family, as usual, is walking to a neighboring Amish farm to visit a relative or friendly family. This is the main activity on Sunday afternoon. The family is all wearing their best clothing.

Lifestyle is an aspect that is affected by relgion. All religions have moral precepts and often behvioral instructions unrelated to those moral precepts. Examples here are Jewish and Islamic dietary prohbitions and rejection of artistic depictions. The impact on life styled is affected by the nature and severity of these moral and non-moral instructins as well as the intensity of one's religious convictions. The Amish are Protestant Christians. Their moral convinctions is within the Protestant mainstream. What is dectinctive is these Amish non-moral behaviors and the inteensity of their commitment. Of course there is a complication here. Once a behavior is ordered, regardless of its nature, it becomes a part of a religiomn's morality. Thus the Amish rejection of much of modern technology takes on a moral aspect. And it is with technology that you mostly see the most obvious differences between the Amish and the outside world as well as within the different orders. he Amish appear closed to outsiders. This is, however, not altogether the case. The Amish are integrated into the wider community economically. It is most obvious if you visit Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the American county with the largest concentation of Amish. And there you see their black, horse-drawn buggies in town. And you cn purchase Amish crafts like beautifyl quilts and other products. And the Amish farms supply and depend on the outside market. They are among the most productive in the nation, amd run on asustainanle basis. And their life style is sructured around their view of themselves--the 'Plain People'.


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Created: 7:59 PM 2/11/2014
Last updated: 8:17 PM 2/11/2014