Varicose Brain wrote:
> On Wed, 17 Sep 2003 15:21:21 GMT, Mark Sornson <sorn...@zk3.dec.com>
> >According to the Bible account, it was a literal
> >sign of a special legal relationship that was
> >established between Jehovah God and Abraham's
> >family and descendents.
> Yes, mutilation is always a good to have in any legal contract.
Unless we're talking about circumcisions that
'go wrong', mutilation is a rather extreme label
for the removal of the male foreskin.
Whether or not it has any perceived value today
(I'm neither arguing for it or against it), as
far as I know, it has never been classified by
any legal or medical authorities as mutilation,
with any accompanying call to universally ban
the practice. It isn't like so-called "female
circumcision", which actualy cuts away female
organs genital organs like the clitoris, and
serves no purpose other than to deprive women
Since the first practicers of it were grown
men (Abraham and his household), if it wasn't
true that Jehovah God commanded the practice,
their reasons for suddenly picking that practice
are hard to fathom (especially since Jewish
religion didn't encourage any other form of
body mutilation, which is not uncommonly
associated with religious fetishism).
> >If the Bible is a fiction and Jehovah doesn't
> >exist, you'll have to come up with your own
> >explanation for why any people would adopt the
> >practice of circumcision.
> According to a South Park Episode, it's just to make the penis look
Ah yes ... I'm sure South Park is an excellent
source of historical information about ancient
cultures. If you'll pardon the pun, thanks
for the tip.
> Yes, that's fiction as well, but it makes about as much sense
> as your biblical explanation.
I didn't write the Biblical explanation, the
ancient Bible writers did.
In ancient cultures, physical marks often played a
very significant role in the identification of people
involved in legal proceedings, and in the classification
of people into various levels of social strata.
Even today, in some cultures, body markings and
cuttings (which 'civilized' people might call mutilation)
have religious and/or social significance.
Modern 'sophisticated' people may raise an eyebrow
to ancient customs, but it's anachronistic to overlay
modern values (and modern skepticisms) on ancient
people. Passing modern-day value-judgments on ancient
practices doesn't change anything about the past, and
it really blocks our understanding of why people did
what they did in the context of the values that were
contemporary to them.