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Circumcision As An Initiation Into The Jewish Community

Decent Essays
Circumcision has be a topic that has been discussed and debated for centuries. This childhood ritual has had evolving purposes and has been used in numerous cultures. This research paper will be specifically focused on the male circumcision as an initiation into the Jewish community as one of its members. It will also discuss the other childhood ritual of introducing the Torah on cakes baked with honey. There are many questions associated with this topics and many myths as well. What is circumcision? Why introduce the Torah to boys on cakes? What does it represent? How has it changed over time? What connection if any, does it have to Christianity? Does it involve ritual sacrifice? Is this practice still around today, and if so how has it…show more content…
Genesis states that the first person to be circumcised was Abraham. God had told Abraham to not only circumcise himself, but his children, his slaves, and any males in his household as well. This was a practice that was to be done from generation to generation. In early history during BCE, this was used as a way to separate the Israelites from the Philistines. Years earlier, there wasn’t much difference between the Israelite community and its neighboring people. But with the arrival of the Philistines changed how they identified themselves as a separate group of people. As time progresses, so do the opinions when it comes to circumcision.
There was a huge threat to the Jewish tradition due to the efforts of Jews to cover their marks of circumcision. Assimilation into the communities that Jews lived in was a common challenge. Keeping with tradition when living in a community that wasn’t always accepting, was difficult. Especially when it was sometimes punished greatly. Because circumcision was strongly associated with Judaism, many Jews would try to remove the marks of this ritual off of their bodies. During the rule of Antiochus IV Epiphanes, there was great crisis for the Jews that were living in Jerusalem. Previously, Antiochus III allowed Jews to live according to their customs, but that was different under the rule of Antiochus IV. There was bans on religious traditions and even violations of temples. Because of Antiochus IV
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