Religious & Cultural Values
For the most part, the majority of circumcisions are performed for religious reasons and the practice predominates mainly amongst Muslim and Jewish boys.
Male Circumcision in Islam
The practice of male circumcisions was already commonplace amongst the Arabs prior to the birth of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was instructed by God in the Quran to follow the religion of Abraham (peace be upon him) and related that the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) circumcised himself when he was eighty years old. The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) explained that five things are akin to the ‘fitrah’ for a man and these include clipping or shaving of the pubic region and armpits, cutting one’s nails, trimming or shaving the moustache and being circumcised. No specific timing for circumcisions has been prescribed but the preference was for it to be done as soon as possible after birth. Indeed, the Prophet (PBUH) circumcised his grandsons, Hassan (RA) and Hussein (RA), on the 7th day after they were born.
This practice of the Prophet (PBUH) has been recorded in numerous Hadith related by both Bukhari and Muslim. It is generally agreed to be obligatory for all males, in keeping with the practices of the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him).
At CircumcisionPRO these Muslim practices and beliefs are very close to heart and we take great satisfaction is being able to fulfil the Sunnah of our Prophet (PBUH).
African Male Circumcisions
Almost all groups in West Africa practice circumcision and this serves as a remnant of ancient initiation rites, particularly amongst cultural warrior schools that predominated amongst regions extending from Senegal to Kenya to South Africa. Following a traditional circumcision, young men would enjoy the benefits of becoming members of the ‘warrior class’ as well as being granted freedom to marry.
In Kenya, traditional circumcisions often involved the use of the same knife for many young men. This is thought to have contributed to the spread of HIV and its practice has now been curtailed. Amongst certain tribes, specifically the Kikuyu and Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania, male circumcisions served as the formal graduation at the end of education programs cultivating tribal beliefs and practices including religion and cultural heritage. Circumcision ceremonies were public affairs and involved significant courage on the part of young males to preserve the honour and prestige of their families. Although much of the associated pomp and ceremony is now rare, circumcisions are still considered an integral part of one’s personal identity and acceptance into society. There are national circumcision programs in place in Rwanda, Uganda, and Zambia.
At Circumcision Pro, we appreciate the significance of male circumcisions in African culture and provide a quality service for males of all ages, ensuring their comfort throughout.
Male Circumcision in Judaism
The practice of circumcision in Judaism also stems back to the original practice of the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him). The Jewish belief is that he performed his own circumcision at the age of 99 years and subsequently also circumcised his son Ishmael, aged 13 years old, and all the males of the household. Circumcision served as a marker of identity and hence was prohibited by the enemies of the Jews throughout various phases in history including the two centuries of slavery in Egypt during the time of the Prophet Moses (peace be upon him). It is a common Jewish belief that the prophet Moses (peace be upon him), was himself subsequently not circumcised, but reinstated the practice following the emigration from Egypt. Indeed, following the rise of Christianity and St. Paul’s decree against the practice, circumcision became the distinguishing feature of Judaism.
In the Jewish faith, circumcisions are practised on the 8th day after birth, which is considered to be the time of the true birth of man and represents a new beginning or inauguration. This ceremony is carried out in accordance with well-defined rules and regulations consisting of the ‘periah’ and the ‘metzitzah’.
For many years many respected individuals within the Jewish community, and often members of the initiation society, have carried out circumcisions for young Jewish babies. However, more recently there has been a move towards a more medically accepted circumcision. At CircumcisionPRO, we are able to provide Jewish families with a circumcision service in keeping with ritual timing without compromising their safety or well-being.