Jews and Muslims: question about circumcision?

I've always been intrigued by the practice of circumcision in Judaism and Islam. My question is why? Why does god care so much about the genitals of a newborn baby boy? God designed the child so why does he want to 'improve' the child's body?

Many say circumcision is beneficial but in 1975, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) stated in no uncertain terms that "there is no absolute medical indication for routine circumcision of the newborn." In 1983, the AAP and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) restated this position. In 1999 and again in 2005, the AAP again restated this position of equivocation.

Some say circumcision helps prevent infection but many boys who haven't been uncircumcised do not get infections. My little brother who is 10 has never had an infection and he wasn't circumcised. Also, some claim that it prevents HIV and STD but now studies are being disputed.

http://kidshealth.org/parent/system/surgical/circu...

http://www.medicinenet.com/circumcision_the_medica...

Update:

Why subject newborns to this procedure if it's not medically necessary? What would happen if the infant doesn't get circumcised? Is he no longer a Jew or a Muslim?

Update 2:

Graham, you said it! The foreskin is there for a reason. Nature didn't put there only for a whim. It helps to protect the child from any infection.

Update 3:

RJ, Maybe you should take your own advice and mind your own reproductive organs. You're not the owner of your sons' penises.

Update 4:

Mohammed, I'm Agnostic so I do not care if Jesus (if he even existed) was circumcised. Come back when you have something serious to say.

9 Answers

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  • 1 decade ago
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    First, I want to make it perfectly clear that I am against infant circumcision.

    However, you are looking at this the wrong way. Jews and Muslims do not circ for any supposed health benefits. Jews and Muslims circumcise because god said to do it. You can't argue with that. And saying it has no health benefits will not deter them, because they aren't doing it for health benefits- they are doing it because it is a sacrafice commanded by god. The only way to argue with religion is to use religious arguments.

    The basis of religion is that it is illogical, so you cant use logic. It just doesn't work. There are, however, several Jewish intactivist resources that can provide decent arguments against religious circumcision.....

    http://jewsagainstcircumcision.com/

    http://jewishcircumcision.org/

    http://cutthefilm.com/Cut_Website/Home.html

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    As most informed people know, there are no benefits to circumcision. The Jews copied it from the Egyptians. Egypt has a big relationship with Judaism because Israel is nearby and Moses lead his "people" out of Egypt so they were bound to pick up some customs. Same thing goes with Islam.

    It became popular among non-Jews in the victorian times as a preventative cure for masturbation. The doctors weren't too informed back then. Now it is just a case of pro-circ doctors carrying out flawed studies to keep the money-making practice going.

    The main reason I object to it is because of what is lost:

    The main thing that is lost is "The gliding effect". This is the gliding motion the skin has when it is rubbed up and down during masturbation or sex. Circumcised men can't masturbate as nature intended - they just rub the head. Often they need special lubrication.

    The next thing that is lost is thousands of specialised pleasure nerves under the foreskin called Meissner's corpuscles - meaning that the foreskin is a specific erogenous zone. When the skin moves back and forth in the gliding motion I just mentioned it produces a wonderful pleasurable feeling. A feeling a cut man will never experience.

    Exposure of the glans (one of the least sensitive parts of the penis) also leads to an extra layer of skin forming which further reduces sensation. This is called keratinization. The glans is supposed to be protected by the foreskin. This reduces infection and the smegma inside helps lubricate the gliding motion and keeps the glans moist. A lot of people don't know that smegma actually contains antibodies to help fight infection. This is why it is ludicrous to say that being circumcised is more hygienic. There are many other things but those are the main things that are lost.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I don't understand why they still do it when it's not necessary. If I had a god that todl me to do such despicable things, I would leave the religion, not follow it. I would protect my kids from something so cruel.

    Besides, being born to Jewish and Muslim parents, no matter what said parents believe, does not make you Muslim or Jewish. A child should have their own freedom of religion and that means freedom to choose if they want that religion and circumcision, or not. Many since leave the faiths they were bought up in, or become less devout, or even join religions that frown on body modification. It's sad they've been scarred by their parents' religious belief. It's unlikely that any other form of ritual scarification would be legal. there have been Jewish men on this very site asking about foreskin restoration.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The people who say God said they should do it are talking nonsense. Their religion may have said it but I am sure God didn't. Why would He design something one way then ask humans to use a razor to cut part of it off.

    The foreskin has a purpose which always seems to be ignored. It is to sheath and protect the extremely sensitive glans to preserve its sensitivity to assist orgasm which has the funamentally important purpose in procreation.

    A circumcised penis can neither have the same sensitivity nor be protected from slight injuries. Every animal on earth is designed with the penis sheathed except when aroused. Why should that not also be the optimum design for humans too?

    Of course there can, in a minority of people, be medical conditions which require removal of some parts of the body, eg foreskin, appendix, tonsils, gall bladder, even a kidney but that is the exception, not the rule, and the result is an imperfect fix.

    About hygiene it is not necessary to remove the foreskin, just pull it back and clean it every day.

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  • Why? Because G-d said so. I am truly sorry, but your opinion does not matter to me. That is one of the commandments of Judaism, to have an outward sign of the covenant with G-d.

    It doesn't have anything to do with being 'improved.' Presently, people are saying that a kosher diet is beneficial for health reasons. The intent of following a kosher diet has never been for health reasons. The intent has been to follow G-d and to obey what he demands. 2000 years ago, our peers thought we were crazy for draining blood from cows or for washing our hands before eating, or for waiting eight days to circumcise our babies.

    Did we care? No. And we still don't.

    If I have a second son, he will also be circumcised, he will join his people in a tradition that goes back thousands of years. Far be it for me to say I know better than G-d what is good for my son and what isn't.

    (By the way - he doesn't eat cheese and beef at the same time, either. Does that have any medical benefits? I don't know and I don't care. Mind your own reproductive organs.)

    Edit: until the age of 13, my wife and I are the ones who are responsible for our children. I take an interest in what happens to my son - but for you to take such an interest in his penis (when you don't even have one of your own) is just creepy.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It has been proved that the male circumcision is healthy and highly hygienic. The fatty substance which is gathered between the foreskin and the glan, (or head of the penis) causes fermentation and contributes not only to harm the male penis but also to cause cervix cancer in the woman, who gets that unwanted material too close to her uterus.

    Perhaps for that reason, and also to decrease libido, circumcision was chosen by the ancient ones to symbolize the sign of the Jewish Covenant with God, according to Genesis 17:10-14.

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  • 1 decade ago

    It amazes me that they still practice this ancient procedure in the 21st century as well.

    I do find it kinda weird how it is a requirement of their religion to have bits of their penis chopped off.

    Also, what if your son grows up and does not want to follow Judaism or Islam? Isn't it a prime example of forcing religion on an unconsenting child who has no knowledge or understanding of it at all?

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  • 1 decade ago

    circumcision represents clean. being clean is holy. the jews are god's people, that is common sense if you have jesus. don't tell me about infections, it is unclean, plain and simple.

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  • 1 decade ago

    do you know that jesus (peace be upon him )has been circumsed.

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