By David L. Gollaher
How has a clinical perform that incorporates big hazard to the sufferer and provides little or no real gain develop into so largely authorized by means of mom and dad and fiercely encouraged via the scientific group? Historian of medication David Gollaher tells the unusual background of medicine's oldest enigma and so much power ritual in Circumcision. From the terribly painful initiation ceremony of the traditional Egyptians, during the Hebrew purification ritual, via circumcision's use by means of the emerging scientific group within the 19th century as prevention for illnesses starting from bedwetting to paralysis, the good secret has been the patience of the perform via significantly assorted social contexts.
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Extra resources for Circumcision: A History Of The World's Most Controversial Surgery
As the sole rite of initiation of a newborn male into the community, circumcision underwent substantial changes between late antiquity, when it was a domestic event, and the Middle Ages, when it expanded to include the wider community and into the synagogue. Symbolism in the ceremony became richer. Historian Ivan Marcus tells us, for example, that the Chair of Elijah was introduced to the circumcision ritual and to the seder to connect these rituals to Israel's prophetic past and messianic future.
In an era of religious ferment, Greek and Roman men might be persuaded to entertain a new theology. Given the ordeal of an operation on the adult penis, though, few would have embraced Christianity if circumcision were a prerequisite. So, in a brilliant theological stratagem, Paul expanded and reinterpreted the ancient distinction between physical and spiritual circumcision. In his Letter to the Galatians, Paul explained that in the process of instituting a new covenant, a fresh basis for the relationship between God and humankindjesus Christ subsumed the old covenant between God and Abraham.
In practice, he worried that "the danger is more to the circumciser than the baby... 53 T W O Christians and Muslims You are circumcised with circumcision, not made by hand in despoiling the body ofthe flesh, but in the circumcision of Christ, buried with Him in baptism, —Colossians 2:11—12 JESUS, IN KEEPING WITH JEWISH LAW, WAS CIRCUMCISED ON THE EIGHTH DAY (Luke 2:21). But circumcision did not figure into his teachings. Among early Christians, the question of circumcision arose when Jesus' apostles—above all Paul, a Jew steeped in rabbinic tradition—began successfully to proselytize Gentiles.
Circumcision: A History Of The World's Most Controversial Surgery by David L. Gollaher