The Amish are a close-knit community with strong religious beliefs. They live a simple life without many of the modern conveniences we take for granted, such as electricity, technology, and automobiles.
This way of life is reflected in many aspects of their culture, including their bedroom rituals.
Amish rules are very strict, and understanding them is key to understanding their rituals.
This article explores them in detail, so you can get a better understanding of this fascinating group of people.
What this article covers:
- What Do the Amish Do at Night?
- Amish Bedroom Ritual
- Amish Bedroom Ritual Age 15
- Amish Weird Bedroom Laws
What Do the Amish Do at Night?
The Amish engage in evening activities just like everyone else. However, their activities tend to be more focused on family and community than on individual entertainment.
After the evening meal, which is typically around 6:00 PM, the Amish gather for family time and devotions. This is a time for the family to be together and share their day with each other.
After devotions, the children have some time to play before getting ready for bed. The adults may spend this time visiting with friends or working on projects. Women may gather to do things like weaving Easter baskets or harvest baskets, while men may talk about farming or business.
The Amish retire early, typically around 9:00 p.m. This gives them time to wind down from their day and prepare for sleep. Once they are in bed, they say a prayer and then drift off to sleep.
The Amish believe it’s important to get a good night's sleep, so they can be fresh for the next day. They typically sleep for seven to eight hours each night.
The Amish bedroom is simple. The furniture is typically made of wood, and the beds are usually bunk beds. The mattresses are filled with straw or feathers, and the bedding is typically made of wool.
They wake up early, around 4:30 a.m, say a prayer, and then start their day.
Where Are the Rules Contained?
It’s worth noting that all the rules in this community, including this night routine, Amish Sunday rules, Amish rules for women, and many more, are contained in the Amish Ordnung. This is a set of unwritten rules that governs all aspects of Amish life.
The Ordnung isn’t static. It changes as the community evolves. However, the basic principles remain the same. The Ordnung is passed down from generation to generation, and everyone in the community is expected to follow it.
Amish Bedroom Ritual
The Amish bedroom rules contain what is known as bundling. This is the practice of sleeping in the same bed with someone of the opposite sex while fully clothed.
Bundling is not considered sexual in nature. Rather, it’s seen as a way to get to know someone better before marriage. It also allows couples to sleep together without being married, which is important in a community where marriages are often arranged.
Couples who are bundling typically sleep in separate beds that are pushed together. They may also sleep in the same bed, but with a board between them to prevent any physical contact.
Bundling is inspired by the Book of Ruth in the Bible. Ruth slept in the same bed with her future husband, Boaz, before they were married.
The book says that this couple slept "side by side, but they did not touch each other". This passage is often cited as justification for the Amish practice of bundling.
This practice was common in early Jewish and Christian communities. However, it fell out of favor in the mainstream world as sexual norms changed. It remained popular among the Amish, though, and continues to be practiced today.
Rules that Govern Bundling
There are a few Amish rules that govern bundling among the Amish. This is to ensure that the practice remains non-sexual in nature.
First, bundling only occurs between betrothed couples, meaning it’s a very rare occurrence.
Second, the couple must be fully clothed when they bundle. Women must wear a long dress, and men must wear long pants.
Third, they must prevent any physical contact, sometimes with a board to separate them. This board is typically about two feet wide and four feet long. It is placed lengthwise in the middle of the bed.
Fourth, communication is an integral part of bundling. The couple is typically allowed to talk to each other during the night. This gives them a chance to bond and gets to know each other better.
Bundling must also be approved by the couple's parents or by the church elders. This is to ensure that everything is above board– no pun intended– and to limit funny business.
Even though this practice doesn't involve sex, the community still considers it highly intimate.
Bundling is just one of the many ways that the Amish community keeps its members close. This practice allows them to form strong bonds with their future spouses before marriage. It also helps to ensure that marriages are based on more than just physical attraction.
Amish Bedroom Ritual Age 15
Preparation for bundling usually begins around age 15 for boys and 16 for girls. At this point, Amish children are considered adults, responsible for their own behavior and expected to follow the rules of the community.
During this time, Amish children are also given a thorough understanding of the meaning of marriage. They are taught that it’s a sacred institution that should be taken seriously.
They’re also taught about the importance of physical intimacy within marriage. This is to ensure that they will be able to have a healthy and fulfilling relationship with their future spouse.
Bundling happens in the girl's bed. The boy goes to the girl's home and is let in by her father. He then goes to the girl's bedroom, where she is waiting for him. Each person sleeps on their side of the bed, with a board in between them to prevent any physical contact.
The couple is allowed to talk to each other during the night, but they’re not allowed to touch each other. Not only does this ensure that they remain chaste, it protects them from forming premature emotional and physical bonds.
The Amish believe strongly in remaining sexually pure before marriage. Sexuality is considered very special, and should be shared between a husband and wife within the confines of marriage. Therefore, bundling helps couples learn to bypass the temptation and only focus on their future as a family and their relationship with God.
It also helps couples build resolve and to test self-control. Couples are taught to delay gratification and to think about the consequences of their actions.
Amish Weird Bedroom Laws
To the outside world, some of the Amish bedroom rules may seem weird, but these rules are an important part of Amish culture and religion.
They want to make sure that couples are compatible with each other and that they are ready to commit to a lifetime of marriage.
The age at which Amish couples marry is much younger than the average age of marriage in the United States. Most Amish couples get married between the ages of 18 and 22. This is because the Amish believe that it’s important for couples to start their families young, and it furthers the community to bear many children.
If a community member breaks the bedroom rituals in any way, Amish shunning rules take effect. Shunning is a practice in which the Amish community members ostracize someone who has broken the rules. The person being shunned isn’t allowed to participate in community activities or to have any contact with other Amish people.
Shunning doesn’t have to be permanent, however. If the person who has been shunned repents and asks for forgiveness, they’ll be welcomed back into the community.
However, breaking some bedroom Amish rituals, such as having sex outside of marriage, is considered a more serious offense, and can lead to ex-communication; permanent expulsion from the Amish community.
Excommunicated individuals aren’t permitted to have any contact with other Amish people. They’re also not allowed to live on Amish land.
The Amish believe that sex is a gift from God, and it should be shared only between a husband and wife within the confines of marriage.
This belief stems from the Amish interpretation of several Bible verses, including 1 Corinthians 7:2-3, which says, "But because there is so much sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman should have her own husband." Their own traditions also play a role in the Amish views on sex.
It’s always good to have an open mind and respect other cultures and religions. Amish culture is very different from our own, but that doesn’t mean that it’s wrong. Each culture has its own customs and beliefs, and there’s an immense benefit to learning as much as we can about them.
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