Sunday, May 8, 2011

Why some people/cultures value circumcision above human life

In trying to understand this we need to look at human evolution, anthropology and the basic human need to affiliate and survive.  Early in human history humans realised that their chances for survival were enhanced if they grouped together with other humans in tribes.  Belonging to a tribe, meant a greater chance for survival.  Therefore whatever rituals Tribes evolved to mark belonging to that tribe, took on a meaning of survival.  In a very primitive unconscious way tribal rituals became imbedded in the human psyche to denote survival.  Taboos, Shaming tactics, ostracization all became tools in ensuring individuals conformed to the tribe.  This is very deeply embedded within the human psyche, and anything that threatens the tribe or its practices, can provoke an alarm response, signalling that a threat to survival exists.

So when we hear of an infant or child dying from the complications of a circumcision, instead of a total human outcry to ban the practice and stopping a preventable death, we see many who practice circumcision, defending the practice of circumcision, & many of us shake our heads in despair.  Unfortunately, It is deeply imbedded within the human psyche to defend primitive tribal practices such as circumcision, and even though it is unnecessary and doesnt belong in the 21st century, people will value the practice above a human life.  Falsely the human psyche of those in circumcision cultures, responds to threats to end circumcision as if their very own survival is threatened if the ritual is threatened.

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