THE EUROPEAN QUESTION
The first records I can find describe how our cultural forefathers
the Greeks and the Romans practiced infibulation (creating an artificial
phimosis e.g. by binding the end of the foreskin together) (57).
The Christian message from St. Paul advises us that "The true
circumcision is of the heart" (58),
thus confirming the culturally acceptable Roman attitude that an
anatomical circumcision was not necessary. Diderot writing in 1779 shows how phimosis often led to gangrene etc. before
All the known facts indicate that in Europe, at
least one man in ten has been slightly but fundamentally anatomically
inhibited, for the last few thousand years!
It appears that these men would have had little information about
their conditions, and even less possibility of skilled treatment.
"Circumcision was not common in Europe or North America (except
among Jews) until the 1870s and became widespread at the turn of
the century" (59).
When one individual male is limited or frustrated in the intimate
relationship with his own body, this has an effect on his intimate
relationships with others. This underlying influence magnifies tendencies
of a similar nature and undermines healthy qualities. Seen individually,
this wouldn't have had any exceptional effect on an adaptable community
- but it is when experiences repeat that they establish themselves
personally, and culturally.
How much influence could such a genital disposition actually have
had, if it occurred (unrecognised or untreated) at a frequency of
one in ten, over a period of 2,000 years or a hundred generations?
Could this (for example) be expected to encourage anxiety patterns
and inhibitions in the relating behaviour of the culture?
See the original evangelical version of this subject