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Who Invented Circumcision?
-- or --

What was he, nuts?

March 2003

E
Editorials

A PSYCHIATRIC FANTASY by JIM W.

Who invented circumcision? How did that custom get started? Most people would guess that religion was the cause, but that doesn't really explain much. You probably already know that the Old Testament God told Jews to circumcise their baby boys (Jesus canceled the requirement for Christians); thereby the Jews could show their faith and set themselves apart from the other biblical peoples. I'm less familiar with Islam, but some of their sects cite religious reasons to circumcise their boys, too.

The history of circumcision may go back thousands of years -- at least as far as the ancient Egyptians, apparently -- but it can't go back forever, right? Animals don't do it. Chimpanzees don't have the knives, nor do baboons. Dolphins? No. Bonobos? Nope. The world's smarter creatures just don't do that.

Genesis 17:14

And any male who does not undergo circumcision will be cut off from his people: my agreement has been broken by him.

So there must have been a first time that circumcision was practiced. Someone invented it. Someone who thought quite a long time and decided it would be a good thing to slice off parts of all those dicks. (Quite possibly someone himself wanted to slice off all those parts of all those dicks.)

I want to know: Who was that person?

I want to go back in a time machine. Then find him. Then kill him. Then I would return to a world full of foreskins.

But murder is a sin, so maybe I'd just cut off his dick -- which would have the same effect, if I did it early enough, right?     ;)


A Psychiatric Fantasy

Suppose you are a psychotherapist with an elite clientele: the heads of state of very important countries. In a repeating two-week cycle your couch hosts a few kings and queens, several Prime Ministers, and many great spiritual leaders of their respective peoples. With you they come to work through their troubles, and they often talk of the burdens they suffer and the difficult decisions they have to make to care for their citizens.

What would a session with such an important client be like? Come with me, and listen in!

Galacians 5:8-12

This persuasion did not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough. I have confidence in you in the Lord that you will adopt no other view; but the one who is disturbing you will bear his judgment, whoever he is. But I, brethren, if I still preach circumcision, why am I still persecuted? Then the stumbling block of the cross has been abolished. I wish that those who are troubling you would even mutilate themselves.

Bible circumcision info is clear and unambiguous.
 

Editorial Story

Page 2

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A Therapy Session

THERAPIST: Good to see you again, your Highness! Have a seat.

His Royal Highness: Thank you!

T: So what's on your mind?

HRH: Well, last month the public execution went just fine, just as we thought it would, and we've had a very sharp drop in street crime as a result.

T: Excellent, excellent.

HRH: And I've gotten almost all of my political enemies in jail, just as we discussed last time.

T: Good!

HRH: But still, I'm worried.

T: Worried?

HRH: I feel we need to strengthen our national identity. Make a statement about what it means to be a Heebyjeebian. Something to symbolize our cohesiveness, our power.

T: How interesting! A lot of my clients think the same thing.

HRH: And?

T: Well, one of them decided that he was going to do a tattoo. The idea is that everyone will get a specific tattoo on their forehead. Then, in battle, you'd instantly know who was friend and who was foe. And when you traveled you'd stand out as a representative of your tribe.

HRH: Exactly -- just the sort of goal I had in mind! I hear that the king of the Joobyhoobians is designing a special kind of tunic for his people to wear that would do the same thing.

T: Wow! A tunic! (Pause) Well, have you settled on any specifics?

HRH: No, but I was thinking along the lines of genital modification.

T (puzzled): Genital modification?

HRH: Circumcision. I thought maybe we could try cutting off the foreskins of the men.

T: Foreskins? (Pause) Why foreskins?

HRH: Well... you see... (he trails off) 

T: Wouldn't that hurt? A lot? And take a long time to heal? And get your men worried about castration? Wouldn't you want to choose some other part of the body?

HRH: Yes it would be painful, but life is full of pain and misery, isn't it? Tattoos hurt, too. Wool tunics get scratchy. Maybe we could do the circumcisions on the men when they're little boys; then only a little teeny tiny cut would be necessary.

(The therapist accidentally drops his pencil and spends a moment to pick it up.)

HRH: A small price to pay for group cohesion and identification, don't you think?

T: What about the women?

HRH: (shrugs his shoulders) I dunno. Fuck the women.

T: Fuck the women? (Gets the joke) Yeah, fuck the women! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

HRH: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! No, but seriously, we wouldn't do anything to the women. I talked to my Queen about the possibility of doing something to her labia but she got real angry and said no way.

 

Editorial Story

Page 3

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T: Yes, I think that if you did that to the women you'd get the feminists complaining that you had an innate masculine unconscious testosterone-driven anti-female prejudice. Something about how if you wanted to cut their genitalia then it must reflect some underlying hostility toward the sex you're cutting. I think I read that in Freud or something.

HRH: But wait -- I do have that feeling! I just don't want to do it -- because Anne got upset. (Pause) You know, I still worry about fucking women because of the teeth they have up in their vaginas.

T: Women have teeth in their vaginas? (Pause) I'll make a note of that. (To himself) I wonder if anyone else has noticed.

1 Samuel 18...27:

Saul then said, "Thus you shall say to David, 'The king does not desire any dowry except a hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to take vengeance on the king's enemies.' " So David rose up and with his men struck down two hundred men among the Philistines. Then David brought their foreskins, and gave them in full number to the king, that he might become the king's son-in-law.

HRH: Well, anyway, women are out. But men? Now there's an idea I can be really proud of. I mean, the penis is one of the major things needed to make babies. Cutting it would run the risk of infection and death, it would make humiliation by our enemies easier if we lose a war, it would make sexual intercourse less pleasurable -- it's a winner all round.

T: Hmmm. I must say, it's a very original idea. Anyone else like it?

HRH: You know those New Guinea guys I met in the waiting room last week? They heard my idea and they loved it -- absolutely, completely LOVED it -- but they want to take it a step farther: to slice the urethra open along the bottom of the shaft -- to flatten the dick out.

T: Why would they want to do that?

HRH: They call it subincision. It makes the dick look more like a kangaroo's penis.

T: Gotcha! A kangaroo. Of course! (He frowns and reaches for a form in his desk drawer.) A kangaroo...

HRH: Then there are some of those African chiefs I met at brunch the day before yesterday. They would like to...

T: Your Highness, I'm sorry, this is fascinating and very, very logical and prudent. But our time is up and there's this piece of paper here -- just a formality, really, it doesn't actually mean anything -- I just need you to sign it right here...

HRH: (Looking at the form) Right under the last sentence where it says "I hereby consent to commitment"?

T: (Pressing a secret button) Exactly.

(HRH signs.)

(The hospital attendants enter and gently, lightly, but firmly guide him out the door exiting to the hallway. As he walks, HRH stares at them with mixed emotions.)

HRH (With great dignity): I have always depended on the kind sadomasochistic fantasies of strangers.

T: (Softly, with puzzled tone) Kangaroos?? (Pause; turns toward the other door) Next!

 

Letter I

In praise of uncut dicks (part 1)

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