#1 Is Amish a Religion?
Yes, Amish is a religion, but it is also more than this. Amishness can be described as a:
- Way of life
To its core – Yes, it is a religion.
Ways to describe the Amish denomination are:
As Discover Lancaster describes of its Amish Religious Traditions:“The Pennsylvania Amish are a private people who believe that God has called them to a simple life of faith, discipline, dedication and humility. They believe that the Amish religion should be practiced, not displayed, and translated into daily living rather than focused on tangible symbols or complicated religious rituals. Their belief is that God has a personal and abiding interest in their lives, families and communities is the force that holds them together in spite of the pressures of the outside world.”
- “But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” – James 4:6.
- “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.” – James 4:10.
- “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” – Romans 12:2.
- Who Are The Amish? (Lancaster, Pennsylvania); May 5th, 2019.
#2 Is Dwight Schrute Amish?
Dwight Schrute, the character from The Office, is not Amish himself; however, his great-grandfather, Dwide Shrude, was Amish. This is mentioned in the episode ‘Casino Night,’ in which he admits he is wearing his great-grandfathers tuxedo.
#3 Is Amish a Culture?
Predominantly considered a religious sect within the United States (Pennsylvania area), the Amish could also be called:
- A culture
- A lifestyle
- A society
- A philosophy
Known for conservative beliefs and an apprehension towards the modern lifestyle, Amish people avoid and/or sanction the following things:
- Sex before marriage
- Immodest clothing
- Substance or drugs
- Showing your hair to God (not wearing a bonnet at Church)
- Cutting your hair
- Dolls with faces (seen as vanity-inducing)
- Not going to Church
- Not working hard
With most of their life being about family, Church, and work – These are the primary principles that support the backbone of their community-driven culture.
- “But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.” – 1 Corinthians 5:11.
- “Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” – John 18:36.
- “I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.” – Romans 16:17.
- 10 Unexpected Facts About the Amish; September 16th, 2017.
#4 Is Amish a Race?
Officially, Amish is not considered a race because there is no national experience or reason to consider them an entire ethnic group. Generally being descendants of Europeans (Swiss, French, Dutch, and Germans), most Amish would be considered Caucasian.
They would more likely be described as a:
To this point, they do not have social security cards nor do they believe in established government organizations such as social security. Despite this, they are still counted in the American population and account for a population of 150,000 in the U.S. alone.
- “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” – Genesis 1:26.
- Woman Who Left Amish Community Opens Up; Published by TODAY; July 18th, 2018.
#5 Is Amish Butter Grass-fed?
Supporting a dairy-friendly diet, the Amish people will consume products such as butter, eggs, and cheese. The butter in the Amish community will most frequently be made using cow’s milk, and those cows will often be raised on the pastor. Due to this, yes, the cows are often grass-fed that produce the Amish’s butter.
Sometimes, the cows’ diets are supplemented with grains and may or may not be used for butter. If the butter is produced by 100% grass-fed cows, it will be labeled as such. According to products such as Minerva Dairy Amish-Style Butter:
“Our 84% Butterfat Amish Roll Butter is made from milk from pasture-raised cow on family-farms. The color of our butter varies with the season and is all natural, GMO Free and rBST free.”
Grass-fed tends to have more nutrients than the standard butter and be more vitamin-rich. It is also considered anti-inflammatory due to it’s richness in butyric acid, as well as being more flavorful in many people’s opinions.
- “Then he took curds and milk and the calf that he had prepared, and set it before them. And he stood by them under the tree while they ate.” – Genesis 18:8.
- “He shall eat curds and honey when he knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good.” – Isaiah 7:15.
- Real Simple – Does Amish Butter Taste Different Than Regular Butter? Published January 2nd, 2019.
#6 Are Amish Christian?
Yes, the Amish are Christian, but undoubtedly unique from most American Protestant Christian groups.
Amish people are closest in theology to Baptists (very traditional and literal in their interpretation of the Bible), but contrarily, they are called Anabaptists.
- Adult baptisms
- The separation of Church and state
They most similarly relate to their distinct brand of Mennonites, which have a related history and lifestyle to their frozen-in-time way of life.
Using an old order scripture that has been translated into their language, Pennsylvania Dutch, worship in this language (with English being secondary) is the main pillar of the Amish life.
- “Abstain from every form of evil.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:22.
- “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” – 1 Timothy 2:1-15.
- Asking the Amish What They Believe; Published October 31st, 2018.
#7 Is Amish An Ethnicity?
Not necessarily. As a group of traditionalist Christians, Amish could be described as an ethnicity by some, but this is not an official definition.
More commonly, one would describe the Amish as a:
- Pennsylvania-based community
If someone did describe them as an ethnicity, this is because Amish people tend to marry and reproduce with other Amish people, keeping their lineage within their European/German heritage. Due to this, the children will, yes, all be Amish; however, this does not make it an official ethnicity. More likely, they would be considered Caucasian or European.
Even the Bible says in Galatians 3:28:
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
With the Amish taking a very direct interpretation of the Bible, this could be taken by them as factual.
- “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward.” – Psalm 127:3.
- The Fine Line Between Religion and Ethnicity; November 12th, 2019.
If you are interested in learning about other Religions in the world, then check out this book on World’s Religions on Amazon.