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Life Without Electricity: The Way of the Amish

Insight to how the Amish community originated and live on a daily basis.

No television, radios, or phones. Could you do it? The Amish are a peaceful community that tucks itself away from the modern life we are all too familiar with. Many people have heard of the Amish, but don’t really understand their way of living or what it all is truly about.

The Amish people originated as Anabaptist’s. This was a group of individuals who believed children shouldn’t be baptized until they are mature enough to decide of their own free rights if this is the path they wish to follow. They also refused holy mass, thinking that the priests of that time were corrupt with their ways of teaching. Because of this, the Catholic churches shunned them away. Some of the Amish were prosecuted while others were burned.

In the year of 1527 Jacob Amman, an elder whose name the Amish derived from, met in secret with many others from the Amish community. They then created a union by the name of The Schleitheim Articles. This was a union which supported Christian brotherhoods living together in a community. To this day, it is still a time of remembrance in the Amish community and the belief is strongly followed.

Due to the continuous clash between the Amish community and Catholic Priests, the Amish began to migrate. The peak of Amish migration to North America came in the 18Th century. Between 1727 and 1770 they sailed on a ship known as the Charming Nancy. Arriving first in Philadelphia in 1737 the Amish groups split into groups. Most settled themselves at Lancaster county while the others migrated to Ohio and Indiana.

One of the unwritten beliefs still followed by the Amish community is the the Amish Charter. It is a set of customs, beliefs, and rules that they follow on a daily basis. You may associate the Amish with their clothing style. It comes off to many as a sure way to distinguish them from the rest of the world. The males will typically wear self-made attire which includes black hats, dark suits, straight cut coats without lapels, plain pants with suspenders, solid colored shirts, and black shoes with socks. The women will traditionally wear bonnets, long dresses with shawls over their shoulders and black shoes with stockings. Amish women are forbidden to wear any type of jewelry and are encouraged to keep a clan and plain look. It is frowned upon for any woman in the community to cut or trim her hair. She must continue to grow it out since birth and wear it tied up into a bun.

This attire is set to represent 17Th century European peasants. It also reflects their desire to avoid change and their respect towards tradition.

The Amish are known for being amazing farmers. They take pride in their hard efforts and work put into their lifestyle. Food is another commonly cherished part of the Amish community.

The Old Order Amish are much more in tune with traditional values. They life an extremely simple life without any electricity, automobiles, or telephones. They commonly use gas to operate appliances for cooking as well as lighting inside of the home.

New Order Amish families use small amounts of electricity in their lifestyle and may also own a telephone and automobile. They still follow tradition with the exception of some modern luxury to help them with their daily duties such as the usage of electricity to run farm machinery.

Although their lifestyles differ greatly from ours, there are things to be learned from such a community such as their ability to forgive. Kindness is a virtue we seem to have lost touch with. Hard work and an appreciation for life is also another wonderful quality they possess.

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User Comments

    On October 20, 2007 at 6:30 pm

    first!:P Amish are perhaps the coolest group of people on this earth!

  2. Very special

    On June 9, 2008 at 1:34 am

    people indeed, but i have mucho Grande respect for the way they choose to live their lifes on.

  3. Stewart

    On October 2, 2008 at 8:53 am

    Good article, but I feel compelled to point out a small error.
    The Amish do NOT take personal ‘pride’ in their hard efforts, or in anything else about their lives. It is an absence of pride that is a core belief among them.
    A perfect example, and one of the most wide recognized, is the total absence of ‘graven images’ (today that constitutes photography). To capture ones’ image is considered a prideful thing and therefore shunned.
    They aren’t against the acknowledgement of a job well done, but to take personal pride is a sign of vanity – a big no-no.

    On a social observation of the world outside their borders, I think the Amish have it RIGHT.
    Simplicity, togetherness, no vanity, hard work & a belief in something greater then ourselves.

    Oh, and several Amish communities don’t teach their children beyond an 8th grade education. But a basic 8th grade education in the 1800s was damn near on our modern college level.
    Think about it, folks.

    Great article! :o )

  4. sam

    On February 1, 2009 at 10:39 pm

    A life without electricity would be a hard life to live. There are some major bad things and some minor bad things but on the other hand there are also some major good things. Electricity as become such a big impacted on our lives, for example, when we need to cook something we don’t have to make a fire like they needed to back in the old days, no, we would just turn on a oven or microwave, when we need to take a shower then we don’t have t o find a river, no, we simply turn on the shower and we take a bath. So as you can read electricity have an big impacted on out lives.

  5. aditya

    On February 1, 2009 at 10:50 pm

    i play world of warcraft wrath of the lich king i have a lvl 80warlock named indian and then lvl 75 warrior named adit and then i love it it would suck!!!!!1

  6. sam

    On February 8, 2009 at 1:22 am

    can i join mike?

  7. jeremy

    On February 8, 2009 at 1:46 am

    I love george W. bush and yeah awsome no more I raq and stuff would be bad MISS you b.LADEN

  8. sam

    On February 8, 2009 at 1:53 am

    me to b.laden was nice

  9. sam

    On February 11, 2009 at 11:54 pm

    well with out el i cant look at p***

  10. Dave

    On April 5, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    >>Oh, and several Amish communities don’t teach their children beyond an 8th grade education. But a basic 8th grade education in the 1800s was damn near on our modern college level.
    Think about it, folks.

  11. lol

    On February 8, 2010 at 4:18 pm



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