What are “Amish values”?

An interesting letter appeared at Lancaster Online today:

In response to the June 10 letter “GOP and Amish: A match made in heaven”: Instead of imagining an Amish man as our nation’s president, let’s take a closer look at values and the purpose of the Amish culture in hopes of inspiring all people to seek and turn to God, the creator of all the universe!

The Amish and Mennonites originated in Switzerland and Germany during the Reformation, where they were severely persecuted for their beliefs and practice of adult baptism upon confession of faith in Jesus Christ — hence the name Anabaptist, which means “one who baptizes again.”

The Amish are Christian by faith, and the purpose of their culture is to strive to practice and live daily the teachings of the New Testament.

The writer’s name is Levi Fisher. He continues, noting that the Amish are not perfect, but suggests three steps that would help us to “see real and lasting change within our nation and perhaps the world.”

Those are:

  1. Read the Bible daily
  2. Read all of Scripture at least once a year
  3. Practice all the ten commandments – “not only the convenient ones”

Seems a pretty simple formula.

By the name and tone of the letter I’d expect the writer to be Amish, or maybe Amish-raised or formerly Amish.

But the title of this letter is what first caught my attention – “Values of Amish culture inspire”.

Non-Amish often suggest ways we can adopt an Amish approach to solve some problem in society (e.g., an Amish-inspired approach to paying for health care).

Yet the idea of “Amish values” seems it could cover quite a bit – including both religious beliefs and cultural aspects.

For me, things like humility, family focus, and Christ-centeredness come right to mind.

What would you say in answer to the question, “What are ‘Amish values'”?

Amish family photo: Bill Coleman

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    1. Kiki

      Amish Values

      As an Orthodox Christian Jew, I can’t imagine “Amish” values being anything less than the values HaMashiach (Christ) instilled which are directly from the Holy Scriptures (the Torah and the Prophets) and which He, being HaShem in the flesh, fulfilled. It is a Christ-centered life, as exemplified by the Apostles and Holy Fathers of the Church. Although vastly different in tradition from Orthodox Christianity, which is the original form of the Church, the Amish have retained the same early Church values and reliance on HaShem (God) Himself. They insist on a life directly by faith and seek to please God, not the world. They keep always in mind what St. Paul stated when he reminds us that, though we (Christians) are in the world we are NOT of it. Why surround ourselves with “stuff” that distracts us from our true focus; Christ Himself? The early believers in Yeshua (Jesus) were different from non-believers in dress, attitudes, and character. We should be the same way, as the Lord is our example. The Amish remember that this life isn’t about us but about HIM. The only issue I have with them is their oft times defiance of civil law which goes against St. Paul’s command in Romans 13. The Church has always held that, unless civil law goes directly against the Torah, the Law of God, we are to be obedient to our civil authorities. This sets us apart from those who think they can disobey the law and God doesn’t care. He does. The Amish need to work on that a bit. Other than that, they are outstanding examples of how we Christians should be living and I, for one, admire them deeply!

      1. Diane Stockton


        You have hit the nail on the head I couldn’t have said it better thank you for your time and your consideration God bless you

      2. Barb Dankis

        I agree that a person living within Judea-Christian or Amish values they should be able to become more of one within reason and wisdom upon the knowledge obtained from the laws that are higher than that of man, The Commandments. Moreover one should look within ones self for there are always going to be our struggles, and the wisdoms we have received from them. This is not only to judge, but to be able to judge fairly and without compromise. Christ even knew that no matter how gracious, loving and merciful GOD maybe, not ALL of man would follow. For instance Jesus’ parables they teach one to be true and good, but also those teachings allow us to see things differently with an understanding of understanding

    2. JM

      Amish values and American values

      My thoughts? Amish values and American values are not the same thing. America supposedly has freedom of and from religion, for which I am grateful and would want to strengthen, not diminish.

      1. Oldkat

        Oh, really?

        There is no guarantee of “freedom FROM religion” in any shape form or fashion in the U.S. Constitution, nor has any court, liberal or otherwise, been able to invent it into law.

        If you believe that it does; you should take the time to actually study it (the Constitution) Ain’t there … though I, too, used to believe that it was. Sorry to tell you, but no it is not.

        BTW: The term “Separation of church and state” also does not appear in any shape, form or fashion of the U. S. Constitution. The Anti-establishment clause does though. Which says (roughly) that the U.S. government shall not create or adopt any specific “official” religion, or denomination, sect or other other sub-division as “The official U.S. religion”.

        Interestingly that term DID appear in the so called constitution of the former Soviet Union. I am told that it also appeared in the “constitution” of Nazi Germany, though I am yet to find anyone that can prove to me that it actually did.

        Hillsdale College has some great online resources for those whose basic understanding of how and why our government was crafted and constructed in the manner it was/is happens to be lacking. This is very beneficial if your education in the subject was all through our woefully inadequate public educational system.

      2. OldKat

        Oh, really? Hmmm?

        There is NO guarantee of “freedom FROM religion” in any shape form or fashion in the U.S. Constitution, nor has any court, liberal or otherwise, been able to invent it into law.

        If you believe that it does; you should take the time to actually study it (the Constitution) Ain’t there … though I, too, used to believe that it was. Sorry to tell you, but no it is not.

        BTW: The term “Separation of church and state” also does not appear in any shape, form or fashion of the U. S. Constitution. The Anti-establishment clause DOES though. Which says (roughly) that the U.S. government shall not create or adopt any specific “official” religion, or denomination, sect or other other sub-division as “The official U.S. religion”. I’m good with that. I don’t want to be forced to be a Catholic, or a Methodist, Hindu or Muslim for that matter.

        Interestingly that term (S of C & S) DID appear in the so called constitution of the former Soviet Union. I am told that it also appeared in the “constitution” of Nazi Germany, though I am yet to find anyone that can prove to me that it actually did.

        Hillsdale College has some great online resources for those whose basic understanding of how and why our government was crafted and constructed in the manner it was/is happens to be lacking. This is very beneficial if your education in the subject was all through our woefully inadequate public educational system.

        1. OldKat

          Sorry for the double post ...

          even if it was slightly modified. I posted it and it refreshed the page, but it was not there. So I made some slight clarifications and posted again, but this time they were BOTH there.

          Interesting …

    3. Wanderer

      Amish Values

      Amish by community tend to find contentment more easily than the average American. However If you visited the families targeted during the Nickel Mines shootings you would see the same pain, suffering, and loss as Sandy Hook or Columbine. No crying “Amish lives matter”.

      Amish culture has; almost no homelessness, illiteracy, unemployment, very low divorce rates, high networth (Asset-to-debt), low bankruptcy, life expectancy comparable to National average, etc… ( Check any books by Nolt or Kraybil). Amish are true small business folk blending life, family, & business together. How they demonstrate this will vary by individual and community. They are not Communist or Socialist. They do suffer a higher percentage of genetic ailments, and have & contain a national average baseline of mental disease(Depression, abuse, anxiety).

      Levi made wonderful points from a Christian perspective; read the Bible daily, read all of Scripture at least once a year, & practice all the ten commandments – “not only the convenient ones”. Kraybil has written about home Amish & conservative Mennonites are raised and live to a cultural order that is not about the individual. Erik wrote about how Amish incorporate Christian values and life balance in their businesses. Amish small business are typically successful and rarely go bankrupt.

      Maybe they are content because they are ignorant of the; impersonal, dehumanizing, consumption fueled, materialist, cold culture that dominates the first world, and most of the second. They are satisfied with their lot in life. Their culture is very personal, always at the human level, simple, modest, & warm. They are more blissful because as a people they are more accepted for who they are, so they have more peace.

      PS – An Amish response once wrote to one of my posts, “Grow where you are planted” and that has stuck with me ever since. 🙂

    4. Elva Bontrager

      Amish Values

      Those that readily come to mind: humility, honesty, keeping one’s word, quietness of spirit, avoiding the appearance of evil, thrift, helping those in need, avoiding gossip and back-biting…. There are others, I know.

    5. elaine

      Life Values

      I struggle with the need to identify with “Amish” values, “English” values, “Jewish” values “Christian” values….

      I believe living a life of “value” has only two precepts;

      1. Love God with all your being.

      2. Love your “neighbor” has you love yourself.

      We must love ourselves. It’s o.k. Loving ourselves validates our love for God. Which then makes it possible to love others.

      Once you get that figured out, this “value” idea just flows……………

    6. Interesting question... but do we understand the question?

      We might leave out the word “Amish” and start by defining the word “values.” Personally, I see values as being very personal and not to be confused with, for example, a belief system and or cultural norms. Obviously, everything gets intertwined and can be complicated–one reason we find it easier to deal in generalities.

      I suspect different Amish folk hold different values. I remember once stopping to collect some escaped livestock in Ohia–a neighboring Amish Farmer explained to me that the belonged to an Amishman, but “we’re not all like the tourist guides. He doesn’t maintain his fences and is a very poor farmer.”

      In general… I think Amish values include a strong sense of community and willingness to subject individual freedom and desires to maintain that community. My impression also is that they respect (value) the earth and the importance of agriculture. They seem to treasure their faith–and one of the qualities I most admire in the Amish is their commitment to practicing that faith in so many different ways. As one example, a visit to an Amish graveyard will visually demonstrate how in death (and life) each has equal standing.

      Amish lives do matter, but as “Wander” pointed out with the Nickle Mines example, for the Amish it is life that matters. No label precedes the word “life” and that includes “my.” I see in the Amish an incredible indpendence, work ethic and self-sufficiency that is not inconsistent with their faith in God. Those qualities apply to their farms and gardens, but more importantly to their view of the world.

      1. Amish values

        Now, if only the Amish would take better care of their animals! What I see in my area is appalling!

    7. Janice

      Amish values

      I am not impressed with the way many of the Amish treat their livestock and domestic animals. They do not care for them well. The dogs and cats are left to breed over and over; they are covered in fleas. The”free-range” chickens are cooped up all day, and those for sale are crammed in small cages without food or water. Their horses are underfed and overworked. Most of the Amish farms I saw were dirty. I saw many over the course of 35 years of traveling to Michigan. Are all Amish this way towards their animals? I’m sure they aren’t. But, I’ve seen too many of them in poor conditions to believe that most Amish think their animals are sentient beings and worthy of decent treatment. Gandhi once said, and I paraphrase, “You can tell a lot about a man by the way he treats his animals.” To me, a true Christian value would be one of treating animals with dignity and kindness.

    8. Simplicity

      I am a 30 year veteran of the IT industry. Everything my career stands for is contra to the Amish way. However, in the last 11 years, I have embraced Agile values, principles, and practices which are somewhat of an application of Amish values to technology. E.g. Principle 10 of the Agile Manifesto: Simplicity, the art of maximizing the amount of work NOT done, is essential. It means, don’t do the extravagant. Don’t over-engineer something when a less-complex solution will suffice. Focus on value, not on bells and whistles. And so on.

      1. The Amish and Agile Principles

        Daniel, I’m not at all an IT person, but I work with quite a few of them in my day job.

        It was neat to see your comment – I did not expect to see a reference to Agile methodology on this post, but I like the point you brought out 🙂 And it seems like some other Agile principles might fit the Amish context well, like #6 for instance (face-to-face conversation is most effective).

        For anyone who wants to see them: https://www.agilealliance.org/agile101/12-principles-behind-the-agile-manifesto/

    9. Amish values and contemporary politics

      I recall seeing some Trump billboards in the Millersbury/Berlin, Ohio area while visiting my brother there prior to the election. At the time there were news accounts of his campaign strategists trying to get Amish out to vote for him.
      My first thought concerned how in the world any Amish person could reconcile Trump’s three marriages and well documented lifestyle of adultery and philandering with their strong belief in marriage for life. I remembered that televised tour of his gold studded room and many other way over the top displays of worldly adornments. His values seemed so distant from those I understood to be central to the Amish that I could not imagine “The Donald” having any appeal for my brother’s neighbors.
      I chuckled to think of Trump washing anyone’s feet. Can you imagine this president demonstrating Amish modesty, giving up his boastfulness, quitting his tactics of distracting from claims of accusers by manufacturing deliberate falsehoods against them? For many of Trump’s supporters in the GOP it is easy to forgive his lying and many other violations of the commandments he finds inconvenient, so long as he manages to be the disruptor-in-chief, but that is certainly not an Amish value system as I understand it.
      These days many Amish have become successful in businesses, but they do not value bankruptcy and lawsuits as a central component of their business model. While both the GOP and the DEMs can cherry pick values that they share with most Amish folk, I doubt that either party has a chance in hell of convincing most Amish to change their minds about the extremely LOW value they place on voting.

      1. Kiki


        I don’t believe this is the topic nor the venue to be spouting your anti-Trump ideologies. The question is a simple and non-politically based one. You could’ve done that without putting your opinion of the President in there.
        Regardless of the lifestyle of ANY President, I’m sure the Amish determine for themselves, based on their community’s ideology and cultural practices, whether to vote for this or that candidate. You didn’t need to bash the President to say that. Please stay on topic!

        1. Politics

          Amen, Kiki!

          Amish historically have avoided politics in general believing (rightfully) that God is the only one to whom we should swear allegiance.

          Michael Caron, please don’t use this as a platform for your agenda. It’s inappropriate and unwelcome.

          1. Judith

            Freedom of speech

            This is a blog about the Amish. The question about Amish Values and the government invited anyone’s thoughts on the topic. I don’t think it is a Christian, nor patriotic value to stifle another’s free speech on the topic – to tell someone they are unwelcome for having an opinion different from yours shows little intelligence in the way of persuasion, nor does it include everyone in the conversation. If Erik thinks the comment is out of bounds, then I think he would take it down. It is no one’s place but Erik’s to control the content of this site and to attack others for their thoughts, that they honestly believe and graciously decided to share – makes me sick to my stomach. This is a kind place where people of all beliefs are welcome as long they are not hurting anyone. The fact that Trump is about as far away from Christian Values as one can come is a not so far off topic and is in fact of interest to me. I also wonder how the Amish reconcile their beliefs with someone who grabs women’s crotches at will, who has called his opponents’ wives “ugly”, who has openly incited violence at his rallies against those who protest, a person who has promoted a bill that would take away healthcare for 30 million people who are in dire need because of old age or are too poor, — if they see Trump as reflecting their “Amish Values” would be indeed interesting to me. So – maybe we can leave it to Erik to tell someone to shut up or tell them they are “unwelcome” here. The First Amendment allowed the Amish a space of freedom they were not allowed in Europe – it also allowed all of us – all of us – the freedom of speech. Thank God for that amendment and the men who wrote the Constitution of the United States of America, the greatest single document ever written.

            1. Kiki


              First of all, Judith, no one told anyone he or she was not welcome here. However, comments that are unnecessary and where one is ranting about the president, are off-topic for the particular subject at hand. Very little, if anything, was even said about Amish values in that person’s post. And, if as you say, there’s freedom of speech, then we also have the right to try to bring that person back to topic and remind him or her that this blog’s purpose isn’t to bash, rant, or complain about the president, no matter what article on the Amish we’re discussing. Erik isn’t the only person who can do that.

              1. Judith

                Thank you Kiki for your reply. I guess we can agree to disagree about the intricacies and complexity of Amish Values and Presidential Politics. And we can do it with grace and humility.

                1. Judith and Kiki, thanks for your comments on this general topic of sharing viewpoints (agreeing to disagree, etc).

                  We do try to keep the conversation civil here. I realize some topics create the possibility of veering into touchier areas. I filter out vulgarity, but lean towards keeping conversation as open as possible. Of course, it is appreciated when people respect the topic and direction of a post and not go too far off tangent.

                  Thankfully the readers here over the years have been the great majority of the time good about that – respectful and polite when disagreeing, even over “hot” topics.

              2. Once again, agree with KiKi!

                Freedom of Speech is one of the most misunderstood legal concepts in America, evidenced by nature of the fact there are a lot of people who seem to think they should be “free” to say whatever they want, whenever they want, wherever they want. That simply isn’t the case. Speaking/writing opinions (thoughts, feelings) will always carry consequences. There’s nothing in the constitution guaranteeing that there won’t be a consequence for speaking and writing. Ultimately, society sets those consequences. (Sometimes by passing laws, by the way.) I know a college professor who once had a student stand up during a lecture and disagree, cussing her out using a multitude of “F-Bombs.” She threw the student out of her class. He went straight to the dean of students and claimed the professor had violated his right to freedom of speech. Yes, there was an investigation. Ultimately the professor prevailed–in part because it was determined the student violated the “student’s code of behavior.” So they employed a legalistic solution to a practical problem. Society (and in the case the college) isn’t prepared to allow certain behaviors (words). Freedom of speech is not an excuse for inappropriate language and behavior.

                1. Kiki


                  Well said, Walter! Too much freedom can be a bad thing, especially when people don’t think about the consequences. It could be said that, nowadays, consequences aren’t even taught. I saw that all the time as a police officer. I’m sure that part of Amish values would be that very important truth; there ARE consequences to making choices, be they good or bad!

    10. Sandra Kathleen

      Micah 6:6-8

      “With what shall I come before the LORD and bow down before the exalted God?…”
      “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you?
      To act justly
      and to love mercy
      and to walk humbly with your God.” (NIV translation)

      This sums up values for Amish and those of faith. I do not see Amish values espoused or utilized in a meaningful way by Mr. Trump or his family or his political cronies. I do not see it evidenced in general by the GOP, and many would argue not by the opposing party either.

      We render to God what is His..our hearts, our minds, all that is ours. We render to our country something that is quite different, but which does NOT include all we are.

    11. Kiki


      Like I stated before, this is not the venue to bash the President or his family. God and God ALONE knows his heart and those of his family members and those others in office. Please keep you opinions about him and politics OUT of this discussion about Amish values.

    12. Me too...

      I, like Kiki, would like to think there could be a couple of forums where nearly everything becomes political. The original question was not, “What is your opinion of Trump?” I respectfully request the moderator delete these off-topic posts and help us maintain the original discussion, on topic.

    13. Oops… obviously I mean to say where NOT nearly everything becomes political.

    14. Michael caron

      I do not consider anything I posted as “bashing” the president. Nor are they off the central topic of Amish values in the context of these times and the country we share. Facts are facts, unless of course one believes “alternative facts” have a ligitimate place in civil discourse. Please reread my final sentence and understand I do not believe most Amish values fit well with any “party”. I was merely pointing out the extraordinary discrepancies in the clearly demonstrated and well documented lifestyle and public habits of our president as compared to the Amish values that I described. I do not claim to know what is in anyone’s heart.

      1. Daniel Gullo

        Another Value

        Another Amish value is non-aggression. For instance when a troll continually posts inappropriate political rantings in spite of being asked to stop, an Amish person would simply ignore the troll rather than engage inciting more trollish behavior. Trolls feed off of attention. So the best strategy is to ignore them, thereby starving them, which causes them to lumber off to some other source of attention that they can troll.

        1. Kiki

          Another Value

          Good point, Daniel. Isn’t there a story where a troll gets knocked off a bridge? I always liked that story.

        2. jerry

          Amish Values

          Of all the Amish values, political preference is near the bottom of the list. I’m sure the Amish, like any good Christian, would pray for the political leaders that God guides their hearts as they make difficult decisions. The Amish tend to be less judgemental than other citizens. Their political views are just that. THEIRS and it’s not for me to question. I have to respect whatever decisions they make.

    15. Michael Caron

      "GOP and Amish: A Match Made in Heaven"

      I would remind the two gentlemen who sorely misunderstand the nature of the term “troll” that nothing I have posted even remotely resembles practices that fit that term. The opening line if the article inviting us to comment on Amish values cites a recently published letter titled “GOP and Amish: A Match Made in Heaven”. This very political assertion was the hook upon which the conversation was initiated. I make no claims that any political party comes close to matching well with the values I have witnessed among my Amish neighbors here in Maine or among my brother’s neighbors in Ohio. Such assertions about the GOP or the Dems ought to be viewed as patently absurd and laughable. As to that remark about “aggressive” posts, the only remark I find even mildly aggressive is the apparent joy the anonymous “Kiki” takes in recalling the “troll” getting knocked off the bridge. That, I am certain, is not a fairy tale Amish us to teach their children good values.

      1. Kiki

        Amish values

        Michael, obviously you don’t recall the story of the Three Billy Goats Gruff, for if you did, you’d recall that the troll in the story was evil and prevented the billy goats from crossing over the bridge to get to the nice grass on the other side. They needed to survive but the troll prevented it. When the big billy goat knocked him off the bridge it was a GOOD thing, because he defeated that evil. Sometimes aggression is necessary to protect the weak, so get off your high horse and know something of which you speak before you write something that makes you look less intelligent than you probably are! Also, the question was not “What are Amish POLITICAL Values?”, but rather “What are Amish Values?” which is a DIFFERENT subject altogether. One shouldn’t assume that a particular ideology WILL, in fact, carry over into political participation.

        1. "Obvious" is in the eye of the beholder

          I’ll leave it to others to determine for themselves who is on a high horse. As to “good” aggression I will also let others decide how well that fits with Amish values. I suspect that Cheri is correct that those few Amish who did participate in politics were casting votes against what they perceived as Hillary’s values rather than for the GOP candidate. But I do not claim to know that with any certainty since I don’t personally know any Amish who voted in 2016.

    16. Al in Ky

      When I think if Amish values, I think of values that are shared by the community — for which the community holds individuals in the community accountable for living those values. This is a challenging way for any of us to live, but I think it would be especially challenging for governmental leaders to live and serve in this manner.

      1. Nice comment Al. The individual within community.

    17. Amish Values

      I would add hard work (work comes before play), humility, the importance of spending time with family; not emphasizing materialism, and donating (volunteer work or money) to those who are in need.

    18. Aj

      Amish values are just old western values.

      The Amish are lucky to still have such values because those are the values which built some of the greatest civilizations. Just look at how they work with the Amish still maintaining them, and how desperately the rest of the west could use some of those values today. The Amish are growing and building many successful communities and businesses. They have helped maintain areas where they moved, areas which haven’t been successfully farmed by the English since the 1950s and which have been slowly dying out. They’re growing despite not preaching to others, while churches that spend all their money and resources to evangelize are losing members at an astonishing rate.

      The Amish maintain every aspect of old Christian philosophy and theology. The way their churches are set up, being community based, rather the based on evangelical outreach is the way almost all churches use to be based. I remember reading an old book on how the Catholic church evangelized nations, but always reflected the will of that nation. It’s the reason why until the middle-20th century you had Polish Catholic parishes, Italian Catholic parishes, Irish Catholic parishes, Hungarian Catholic parishes, Ukrainian Catholic parishes, etc. Every community had their own parish and the local community maintain that church, had their kids attend the local parish school, and even built the very churches they attended with their bare hands.

      Today is different. Everything is different. Christianity has loss sight of the power of communities and traditions, and have taken on a commercialized interest in growing their numbers. It use to be thought that breaking down these traditions and opening up churches to whomever, would have the effect of growing the congregations and reaching new people. Here we are 60-yrs latter and churches (95% of the churches nowadays) who bought into that view are losing members, declining, and even many of the members they do keep aren’t even religious. There is power in traditions and holding people to account for how they live and act. Churches today don’t. Their lack of discipline is the reason for their decline.

      1. Wanderer

        Wonderful & thoughtful comment.

    19. Allen Schwuhl

      The Amish and the GOP?

      Knowing the Amish that I know, and being a plain person myself; I find it hard to find any similarity between the Amish and the GOP. WIth the boundaries set around their community way of life, I find it difficult to believe that either party, GOP or DEM would have much of a lasting impact. I will say that many of our values are American values, or maybe more accurately, American values of a different time: faith, community, mutual aid and caring, hard work and thrift, the three K’s of the overall Pennsylvania German community: Kinner, Kich, und Karrich (children, hearth (kitchen) and church) are the common core values that we share with the rest of American society, we just have a different of going about it.

    20. Cheri

      Amish Politics/Values

      This is my first post on this forum. A friend of mine had befriended a couple of Amish men about 10 years agp and for the past few years I have been visiting them with her. They are Old Order Amish. The older of the two men is about 70 yrs old and never married. This visit he and I spent a lot of time talking (I think he liked the company of this 50 year old, single female!). I asked him if he voted this past election. He said that he has never voted before, but the other Amish men who he knows have voted, voted “against” Hillary by voting for Trump. He also mentioned that he really, really likes Mike Pence.

      As far Amish values – humility, hard work, love of God and family. I cannot get enough of their peaceful nature.

      My friend, John Stoltzfus, said that I can put an RV home on his property and have a vacation home for life… oh how I wish I had the extra money! I think I found a friend for life in him.

      1. Cheri, a belated welcome, and thanks for commenting 🙂 Nice to hear you found a new friendship! One thing I like about visiting Amish friends is the opportunity for kitchen-table conversation (where the main distraction is usually the kids running around, rather than tech gadgets 🙂 )

    21. OldKat

      No Amish - GOP tie IMHO

      I am neither a Republican, nor a Democrat … though I was raised in a family that was, if not staunchly Democrat, it was at least consistently Democrat in their voting record.

      I am also not particularly impressed with either party. Though I will, on rare occasion, find myself aligned with what the GOP CLAIMS to stand far. (Not that they ever DO what they say they are going to do once they get elected)

      I can’t recall the last time that I found myself in agreement with anything the Democrats were promoting. Though, frankly, the Democrats DO have a better record of actually implementing their agenda once they are in power. Too bad it is all a rehash of the failed policies of the sort put in place by the Socialist Democrats in Europe. We can easily see what a disaster that has been.

      I also was NOT happy to see Donald Trump get the GOP nomination, and was determined to be like most Amish purportedly are and just not VOTE. Then the thought of Hillary Clinton as President settled in on me and I held my nose and voted for Trump. So, while NOT thrilled with the Trump win … but was ECSTATIC over the Clinton loss.

      Honestly, I expected absolutely nothing of him as President (about like I viewed his predecessor), but have been somewhat pleasantly surprised at the approach he has been taking. Even if he does have to fight the spineless cretins that dominate the GOP, to move forward with the agenda he ran on. He gets NO help from the career politicians that dwell in DC; not mentioning any names John McCain, Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Gra … oh, never mind!

      Anyway, I just don’t see a fit between the GOP and “the” Amish. Though, SOME Amish may be somewhat like me and distrust the alternative even more than they distrust the GOP. Who knows?

      More of the same wasn’t all that appealing, in any case.

    22. Can't you just leave us alone?

      While catching up on the comments, I found myself particularly enjoying the clarification that the constitution guarantees separation of church and state, not freedom from religion. (Too bad it doesn’t guarantee freedom from politics, eh?)

      As other comments suggest, one value the Amish seem to have is an integration of religion into community–in a sense quite the opposite of separating church and state. Their communities and individual lives are ruled by their collective, agreed-upon beliefs. We seem to have quite the opposite approach–thinking that separation of church and state means any belief must be allowed. We therefore constantly struggle with trying to figure out ways to allow conflicting beliefs to exist, failing to understand that the absence of religion is, in itself, a religion. When we, for example, took the individual right to prayer out of schools, we actually supported the absence of religion.

      The Amish aren’t particularly interested in forcing their belief system on others–they just want freedom to believe and practice as they see fit. Most “political” action in this country is designed to ensure that individual beliefs are not allowed–a reason they often end up in court in an attempt to protect their rights.

      In summary, I don’t think a discussion of which political party or candidate appeals to the Amish is especially fruitful. The most accurate answer might well be, “Neither.” (Interesting that a lot of non-Amish folks are fed up with both parties.) A primary consideration for those Amish inclined to vote might be “which candidate/party is most likely to leave me alone?”

      1. OldKat

        I agree, Walter

        Walter Boomsma wrote: A primary consideration for those Amish inclined to vote might be “which candidate/party is most likely to leave me alone?”

        This is basically what it comes down to for me as well. This and which candidate/party will do the LEAST damage to the system? and which candidate/party is MOST likely to stay within the confines of the Constitution?

        Really this whole discussion can move outside the political spectrum into the rest of society. Yesterday I saw a story in the news that Harvard University, a fairly well known and established little center of higher education,(being facetious here) was rescinding acceptance for a small number of incoming freshmen that had previously been accepted. The reason? These individuals had posted comments in social media which others may find offensive. Really? I guess now we need to clarify that any individual in this country does NOT have a guaranteed “right” to NOT be offended.

        Ideally, we all would conduct ourselves in a manner that others would not find offensive. We also all know somehow we will manage to cross that line at some time, or another, as we go about our daily lives. Besides, what Walter (for instance) may find offensive … I may not … and likewise the other way. It appears that some people go around LOOKING for reasons to be offended … IMHO.

    23. Kiki

      Amish Values

      If you want a great example of Amish values, just read the 2007 article entitled, “Letting Your Light Shine” and you will all get a glimpse into Amish values.

      1. Kiki I wasn’t sure which article you mean, so I Googled it with the word Amish, and a post on this blog popped up 🙂 Is this the one you were referring to (or maybe a completely different article at another source)?


        Either way, it was a nice reminder of a warm visit. “Aden” just left such a positive feeling with me. I haven’t been in touch in some time, but I think I need to drop by next time I’m in his neck of the woods.

        As far as Amish values, you also reminded me of the “Rules of a Godly Life” booklet which you’ll find in Amish bookstores. We did a series of posts on some of these points several years ago. Here are a few of them.