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Author Topic: Thoughts on Amish communities  (Read 2383 times)

bluewave193

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Thoughts on Amish communities
« on: June 12, 2012, 08:44:42 pm »
So I found this show that highlights people who are associated with the Amish Communities. In the particular episode I saw, a young girl (I'd guess around 16 or so) with a rough past who wants to join the Amish community. For the 6 months (?) that I've been pagan (now with Druid influences) I've been much more open and interested in different religions. However, watching this show makes me a tad bit u comfortable. Perhaps it's because of how forceful they are with their religion?

Anyway, just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on the matter. I know there have been some Christo-pagan threads floating around.

Thanks,

Blue

sailor

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2012, 09:49:39 pm »
Quote from: bluewave193;59782
So I found this show that highlights people who are associated with the Amish Communities. In the particular episode I saw, a young girl (I'd guess around 16 or so) with a rough past who wants to join the Amish community. For the 6 months (?) that I've been pagan (now with Druid influences) I've been much more open and interested in different religions. However, watching this show makes me a tad bit u comfortable. Perhaps it's because of how forceful they are with their religion?

Anyway, just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on the matter. I know there have been some Christo-pagan threads floating around.

Thanks,

Blue

 
Forceful? The Amish?  That I find surprising, I thought they did zero attempts at conversion of outsiders.

What is this show?

Wickerman

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2012, 10:02:40 pm »
Quote from: sailor;59789
Forceful? The Amish?  That I find surprising, I thought they did zero attempts at conversion of outsiders.

What is this show?

 
If the girl is trying to convert, they will expect her to adopt their ways 100%. They also believe that one is judged by the sum total of their life's deeds. So a rough past would be a mark against her from the beginning.
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monsnoleedra

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2012, 10:12:03 pm »
Quote from: bluewave193;59782
So I found this show that highlights people who are associated with the Amish Communities. In the particular episode I saw, a young girl (I'd guess around 16 or so) with a rough past who wants to join the Amish community. For the 6 months (?) that I've been pagan (now with Druid influences) I've been much more open and interested in different religions. However, watching this show makes me a tad bit u comfortable. Perhaps it's because of how forceful they are with their religion?

Anyway, just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on the matter. I know there have been some Christo-pagan threads floating around.

Thanks,

Blue


I suppose forceful might be a word used to describe the social position of a people who use their religion and society as the basis of their worldview.

Yet one can not simply say "Amish" as a blanket statement as their are old order and new order Amish just as thier are old order and new order Mennonite groups.  From what I recall, I live in a heavy Mennonite area, a child chooses the life style and makes a commitment to it.  Even to the point of going into the world to experience it then deciding if they will make the commitment to the religion and lifestyle.

Yet as a community they are more passive than aggressive and rely upon themselves vice calling upon those outside of the system.  Their religion is not seperate from their social identity but an interugal part of it, thus one can not remove it.  I think where it goes in your face is that they live it everyday and it is visible to the outsider, in all its strengths and weaknesses revealed.

sailor

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2012, 10:35:23 pm »
Quote from: Wickerman;59791
If the girl is trying to convert, they will expect her to adopt their ways 100%. They also believe that one is judged by the sum total of their life's deeds. So a rough past would be a mark against her from the beginning.

 
OK, but I"m not sure how that translates to forceful.

Marilyn/Absentminded

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2012, 10:45:04 pm »
Quote from: sailor;59794
OK, but I"m not sure how that translates to forceful.

 
Me either.  My husband's a Mennonite (not very religiously any more, but the culture is still part of him) and has relatives among the Moderns, the Old Colony, and the Black Bumpers.  'Forceful' is not a word I would use to describe them, outside of the individual families.  Discipline and a certain amount of stern-ness inside the family, but they wouldn't treat an outside (f'ex, me, an open pagan) less than courteously.

Jubes was in the same situation, but she actually lived in the community, rather than a province away.  She may weigh in on this with a different perspective.

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And I die for the truth in my secret life

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Annie Roonie

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2012, 12:09:26 am »
Quote from: bluewave193;59782
So I found this show that highlights people who are associated with the Amish Communities. In the particular episode I saw, a young girl (I'd guess around 16 or so) with a rough past who wants to join the Amish community. For the 6 months (?) that I've been pagan (now with Druid influences) I've been much more open and interested in different religions. However, watching this show makes me a tad bit u comfortable. Perhaps it's because of how forceful they are with their religion?

Anyway, just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on the matter. I know there have been some Christo-pagan threads floating around.

Thanks,

Blue

Was it the National Geographic Channel's: Amish Out of Order? The Culture Clash episode seems like it might be similar to what you describe.

I have not checked it out. Just looking now. ... Yay! There's Mose Gingerich from that 2004 show Amish in the City. I enjoyed that show because of him or the way he was portrayed. I am going to have to check this one out a bit. Thanks for the tip on that!

Holmes County in Ohio is pretty much the Amish capitol here. You can Google map it and then pan about to see the whole area if you're interested in what one Amish country looks like. Many Amish live further north though. Within 15 miles of here. I go through there several times a year. There's a shop that's only open during daylight when it's warm (Nice hours of operation!). They sell mostly all Amish made products. A huge basket to rival any Longaberger costs about 40$, but they leave the knots of the natural wood on tops and things unlike Longaberger. When I inquired about it I was told, "God made that wood and that wood is perfect."  It might've been construed as a curt reply, but that's the kind of reply I'm used to with them and I don't take it that way. No wasted words is all. And that's been a running trait IME.

I get the chance to interact a couple of times a year. Well, as much as they will interact with me! Been in an out of Amish country all my life taking the backroads and  it's always been a friendly interaction, but I was schooled about the way they talk and think a tiny bit when I was young. My father did some old school blacksmithing as art, and his partner for a time was a man who used to be Amish. I hung out around them and was told how terrible waste was and how much of a virtue hard work was. His partner showed me how to milk a goat once. I built an affection for the Amish through that laconic man.

So from my experiences as an outsider, they might come off as forceful about things or terse, but it's just that they don't waste time. They don't waste much of anything that I know of. It's hard work they do. And I imagine patience runs thin sometimes with folks who do not understand the world view or feel they must question it. Shoot, if you leave, you leave for keeps. Not much time to waste on sentimentality even. And if you look at the way they farm from Google maps, you'll see they don't waste the land either. Waste not, want not.

I've not seen the show, but I can imagine that someone coming into that life might have a ton of questions starting with "why." And while that might be normal for you or me, I think it might be wasteful for them.

Possibly interesting trivia: Raymond Buckland used to live in Holmes County. He may still.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2012, 12:13:46 am by Annie Roonie »

Annie Roonie

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2012, 12:19:47 am »
Quote from: Marilyn/Absentminded;59796
Me either.  My husband's a Mennonite (not very religiously any more, but the culture is still part of him) and has relatives among the Moderns, the Old Colony, and the Black Bumpers.  'Forceful' is not a word I would use to describe them, outside of the individual families.  Discipline and a certain amount of stern-ness inside the family, but they wouldn't treat an outside (f'ex, me, an open pagan) less than courteously.

Jubes was in the same situation, but she actually lived in the community, rather than a province away.  She may weigh in on this with a different perspective.

Absent


Discipline! Yes! That was the word that was escaping me. The ex-Amish man I knew had daughters and we played together and that word was a big deal in their house. I remember my mother said once that she wanted us to stay there and learn some of it. :)

Thorn

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2012, 03:47:37 am »
Quote from: bluewave193;59782
In the particular episode I saw, a young girl (I'd guess around 16 or so) with a rough past who wants to join the Amish community. For the 6 months (?) that I've been pagan (now with Druid influences) I've been much more open and interested in different religions. However, watching this show makes me a tad bit u comfortable. Perhaps it's because of how forceful they are with their religion?

 
I've watched a lot of that show, and know the episode you're referring to.  (Annie - yes, it's Amish Out of Order.  Unless I'm completely off the mark and another show had a strikingly similar episode.)

I got a completely different impression that you did.  I've actually been quite impressed with the more "liberal" Amish groups they've shown.

IIRC, it took quite a bit of doing to find a family that would even consider fostering a potential convert.  It felt to me like foster family wasn't pushing their religion so much as making sure that the girl knew what she was getting in to.  She was 16 and this is a huge decision to make.  Plus, I don't remember any of the reasons she gave for wanting to convert having much to do with the actual religion - it was more that she wanted the sense of community, and of people taking care of each other.  I kinda got the impression what she wanted was to escape her regular life, rather than to be Amish for it's own sake.

Also, as they said in the show, it's an Amish belief that the father of the family is responsible for both the physical and spiritual well being of everyone under his roof.  If he's going to take this girl on, of course he wants to know that she's serious.

(If that doesn't make sense, please excuse me.  I've got a bit of whiskey on board.)
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sailor

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2012, 03:52:31 am »
Quote from: Thorn;59821


(If that doesn't make sense, please excuse me.  I've got a bit of whiskey on board.)

 
Makes perfect sense. Amish seems to be more than just a religion; it's a religion that is required to live a very different life style than modern Americans.

Maybe 200 years ago it was more of just another religion since their life style hasn't changed with the industrial revolution. Now, no.

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2012, 08:21:27 am »
Quote from: Wickerman;59791
If the girl is trying to convert, they will expect her to adopt their ways 100%. They also believe that one is judged by the sum total of their life's deeds. So a rough past would be a mark against her from the beginning.

I'm not seeing this as forceful either -- especially when compared to religious groups I do consider forceful in their dealings with potential converts and others (e.g. many fundamentalist Protestant denominations).
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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2012, 09:31:51 am »
Quote from: Marilyn/Absentminded;59796
Me either.  My husband's a Mennonite (not very religiously any more, but the culture is still part of him) and has relatives among the Moderns, the Old Colony, and the Black Bumpers.  'Forceful' is not a word I would use to describe them, outside of the individual families.  Discipline and a certain amount of stern-ness inside the family, but they wouldn't treat an outside (f'ex, me, an open pagan) less than courteously.

Jubes was in the same situation, but she actually lived in the community, rather than a province away.  She may weigh in on this with a different perspective.

Absent

 
Thanks  my  eyes  are twitching at the  mere  thought!

OK first thing  first the Mennonites  we  have to  deal with and the Amish are  completely different. The Mennonites in our  lives   their  course of action  regarding their  religion is more of a   "do as I say  not as I do"  course. They  use  it  as a control  mechanism to control people, rather than a way of life. The Amish on the other hand  their  religion is a daily thing that they  use to control themselves  rather than  control others. The word discipline in the Amish sense isn't  used  in the term  to beat  someone  until they  give in and  conform  it's more along the lines of self  discipline  used to  create a  hard working God fearing person. A  simple example  of the  difference in the terms  is  when it comes to  my  15 yr old  Bi-polar  child, I've lost  count  of the  times I've been told  she does not need  meds to  help her  she  just  needs  some  good  old fashioned discipline a "good  beating will  fix her"  whereas  in the Amish community they would  teach her  ways to  help control herself  thru  hard work and  prayer.

On  the whole I'd much rather  deal with an entire Amish  community  than  one  family  of  over zealous  Mennonites  trying to  shove a bible  down  my  throat, and sending  preachers to my  door  the  very  day I had my  wisdom  teeth removed, then  LIE about it when  confronted  about sending  preachers to my  door, only to confess some  5 years later   that  YES  it was me that  sent them  to your house!! << YES that  really happened!

Forceful is a perfect  word to  describe most of the Mennonites I know, but  not the Amish people I've  come across, if that makes any  sense  at all.

I've seen that  show Amish Out of Order and  I think it's  a good show dealing with what the younger ( Amish) generation is  dealing with and  their  personal struggles. It is  reality  for Amish and  exAmish, now  let's see a  nice reality  show about  the  Mennonites and exMennonites... man I have a list of  people that  could star in that   show and it would  be   a hell of a reality show!!!! Let's be honest some of the stuff that would come out in a show like that would shock the world! :D:
Armed with  common sense and worldly ways.......

bluewave193

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2012, 01:33:53 pm »
Quote from: Annie Roonie;59801
Was it the National Geographic Channel's: Amish Out of Order? The Culture Clash episode seems like it might be similar to what you describe.

I have not checked it out. Just looking now. ... Yay! There's Mose Gingerich from that 2004 show Amish in the City. I enjoyed that show because of him or the way he was portrayed. I am going to have to check this one out a bit. Thanks for the tip on that!

Holmes County in Ohio is pretty much the Amish capitol here. You can Google map it and then pan about to see the whole area if you're interested in what one Amish country looks like. Many Amish live further north though. Within 15 miles of here. I go through there several times a year. There's a shop that's only open during daylight when it's warm (Nice hours of operation!). They sell mostly all Amish made products. A huge basket to rival any Longaberger costs about 40$, but they leave the knots of the natural wood on tops and things unlike Longaberger. When I inquired about it I was told, "God made that wood and that wood is perfect."  It might've been construed as a curt reply, but that's the kind of reply I'm used to with them and I don't take it that way. No wasted words is all. And that's been a running trait IME.

I get the chance to interact a couple of times a year. Well, as much as they will interact with me! Been in an out of Amish country all my life taking the backroads and  it's always been a friendly interaction, but I was schooled about the way they talk and think a tiny bit when I was young. My father did some old school blacksmithing as art, and his partner for a time was a man who used to be Amish. I hung out around them and was told how terrible waste was and how much of a virtue hard work was. His partner showed me how to milk a goat once. I built an affection for the Amish through that laconic man.

So from my experiences as an outsider, they might come off as forceful about things or terse, but it's just that they don't waste time. They don't waste much of anything that I know of. It's hard work they do. And I imagine patience runs thin sometimes with folks who do not understand the world view or feel they must question it. Shoot, if you leave, you leave for keeps. Not much time to waste on sentimentality even. And if you look at the way they farm from Google maps, you'll see they don't waste the land either. Waste not, want not.

I've not seen the show, but I can imagine that someone coming into that life might have a ton of questions starting with "why." And while that might be normal for you or me, I think it might be wasteful for them.

Possibly interesting trivia: Raymond Buckland used to live in Holmes County. He may still.

 
Yes it was Amish: Out Of Order.

sailor

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2012, 02:43:23 pm »
Quote from: bluewave193;59859
Yes it was Amish: Out Of Order.

 
OK, so what do you mean by forceful?

monsnoleedra

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Re: Thoughts on Amish communities
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2012, 04:38:59 pm »
Quote from: Jubes;59839
.. OK first thing  first the Mennonites  we  have to  deal with and the Amish are  completely different. The Mennonites in our  lives   their  course of action  regarding their  religion is more of a   "do as I say  not as I do"  course. They  use  it  as a control  mechanism to control people, rather than a way of life. The Amish on the other hand  their  religion is a daily thing that they  use to control themselves  rather than  control others. The word discipline in the Amish sense isn't  used  in the term  to beat  someone  until they  give in and  conform  it's more along the lines of self  discipline  used to  create a  hard working God fearing person. A  simple example  of the  difference in the terms  is  when it comes to  my  15 yr old  Bi-polar  child, I've lost  count  of the  times I've been told  she does not need  meds to  help her  she  just  needs  some  good  old fashioned discipline a "good  beating will  fix her"  whereas  in the Amish community they would  teach her  ways to  help control herself  thru  hard work and  prayer.

On  the whole I'd much rather  deal with an entire Amish  community  than  one  family  of  over zealous  Mennonites  trying to  shove a bible  down  my  throat, and sending  preachers to my  door  the  very  day I had my  wisdom  teeth removed, then  LIE about it when  confronted  about sending  preachers to my  door, only to confess some  5 years later   that  YES  it was me that  sent them  to your house!! << YES that  really happened!



You must have a very different breed of Mennonite's in your are than we do here in Virginia / West Virigina .   You never see them doing any door to door or bible thumping.  Many still use the buggies and horses though some use the modern car then use the buggies on Sunday for church services.   Given that those in this area have been here since the mid 1700's for sure and they've not changed in many ways.

Even the reference to disabled children does not match what I experienced with them.  Working with a number of thier special needs children who were placed in public school programs as their local school systems didn't have the needed specialized teachers.

Thier religion a daily facet of their lives.  The weekly meetings of the women, the dress for males and females.  About the only difference is are they old order Mennonite which is coal oil lamps and such with no electricty or new order which uses some or all modern things.  With some in an in-between state where they use modern machinery and electricity for farm work but old order for thier homes.

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