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Why do rabbis suck the wound on babies after circumcision?

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    (Original post by Hylean)
    Interestingly, you appear to be wrong in that.

    "Traditionally, metzitzah was accomplished through oral suction, known as "metzitzah b'peh" ["via the mouth"], most likely as this was the best technique available. Beginning in around the 18th Century, however, it was known that this technique itself can spread infection (ironically, prevention of which was the very reason metzitzah was instituted) and harm the baby. Thus, it became quite common in the Jewish world to perform metzitzah via a safe method, such as a sterilized glass tube. This is removes all risk and is almost the universal practice today, although some ultra-Orthodox communities, most notably Hassidic Jews and some communities in Israel, continue to use the oral method.

    Less commonly practiced, and more controversial, is metzitzah b'peh, (alt. mezizah), or oral suction,[10][11] where the mohel sucks blood from the circumcision wound. The traditional reason for this procedure is to minimize the potential for postoperative complications,[12][13] although the practice has been implicated in the spreading of herpes to the infant.[14]

    A sterilized glass tube is now used.[15][16]...

    Because of the risk of infection, some rabbinical authorities have ruled that the traditional practice of direct contact should be replaced by using a glass tube between the wound and the mohel's mouth, so there is no direct oral contact. The Rabbinical Council of America, the largest group of Modern Orthodox rabbis, endorses this method.[29]"

    So really, it's a very small minority within the Jewish community who continue to use the mouth to sterilise. Hardly a reason to call for the outright ban of the practice.





    Thankfully, the practice isn't as common as the OP would have us think.
    As mentioned in the article in NYC alone it occurs over 2000 times a year which is a big share of Jewish infants born in that city (remember it has to occur shortly after birth). It's popular in the Hasidic community and rarer in others but the problem is that a lot of liberal/cultural Jews take their infants to Hasidic places often unaware of the exact details of the procedure beforehand.
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    'Thankfully, the practice isn't as common as the OP would have us think.'

    Who gives a ****? It shouldn't be done at all.
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    Circumcision is fine, the penis sucking isn't.
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    Eww, that's disgusting. I'm surprised Catholic priests haven't tried to promote similar circumcision procedures in their faith.

    In answer to the OP, yes, it should be banned as it is a completely unhygienic procedure. It's essentially cosmetic surgery, but with somebody licking the wound - imagine how pissed people would get if someone died in a hospital because a surgeon licked the wound. Oh, and do this with a view to banning infant (and child) genital mutilation later on.
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    (Original post by Brutal Honesty)
    As mentioned in the article in NYC alone it occurs over 2000 times a year which is a big share of Jewish infants born in that city (remember it has to occur shortly after birth). It's popular in the Hasidic community and rarer in others but the problem is that a lot of liberal/cultural Jews take their infants to Hasidic places often unaware of the exact details of the procedure beforehand.
    "David Zwiebel, executive vice president of Agudath Israel, an umbrella organization of Orthodox Jews, said that metzitzah b'peh is probably performed more than 2,000 times a year in New York City."

    Hardly definitive proof. I'd much rather see some hard evidence before we start spouting numbers.

    Then the fault lies equally with the parents. They should research who they are taking their child to for such a tradition. Given Hasidics are a minority within the Jewish world, I highly doubt it's as problematic as you're making out. This is not to say I agree with the practice and I think they should update their matters, as the entire thing is about hygiene ultimately, but there are ways to make sure the sucking can continue regardless. Such as health checks for any rabbi performing it, a list of rabbis with clean bills of health, etc., the use of antiseptic mouthwashes and wipes for the baby afterwards, etc.



    (Original post by Id and Ego seek)
    'Thankfully, the practice isn't as common as the OP would have us think.'

    Who gives a ****? It shouldn't be done at all.
    Why not, exactly? Sure, I'd agree it shouldn't be carried on in its current form, but as I've laid out above, there are ways to deal with it.
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    Sucking the wound is totally ridiculous...

    For a start it's paedophilia, it also has absolutely no basis in scripture (but even if it does that wouldn't excuse it).

    It should be banned. Immediately. I literally don't understand why this would be allowed ever.
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    people saying it's paedophilia, it was just the best way to clean out a wound 'back in the day' It shouldn't really be done now, (and for the most part isn't, see other posts) but there isn't anything sexual about it, think it's a bit misleading for the OP to describe it as 'oral sex.'
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    (Original post by Hylean)
    "David Zwiebel, executive vice president of Agudath Israel, an umbrella organization of Orthodox Jews, said that metzitzah b'peh is probably performed more than 2,000 times a year in New York City."

    Hardly definitive proof. I'd much rather see some hard evidence before we start spouting numbers.

    Then the fault lies equally with the parents. They should research who they are taking their child to for such a tradition. Given Hasidics are a minority within the Jewish world, I highly doubt it's as problematic as you're making out. This is not to say I agree with the practice and I think they should update their matters, as the entire thing is about hygiene ultimately, but there are ways to make sure the sucking can continue regardless. Such as health checks for any rabbi performing it, a list of rabbis with clean bills of health, etc., the use of antiseptic mouthwashes and wipes for the baby afterwards, etc.





    Why not, exactly? Sure, I'd agree it shouldn't be carried on in its current form, but as I've laid out above, there are ways to deal with it.
    No-one is allowed to suck blood of the penis of an infant.

    I do not care which God or book says you can. I don't care which organisation permits it. I don't care how hygienic it is. The laws of Western society ban it outright. There is no discussion.

    You are wrong. There is absolutely no argument you could bring to justify this disgusting behaviour.
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    (Original post by imperial maniac)
    No-one is allowed to suck blood of the penis of an infant.

    I do not care which God or book says you can. I don't care which organisation permits it. I don't care how hygienic it is. The laws of Western society ban it outright. There is no discussion.

    You are wrong. There is absolutely no argument you could bring to justify this disgusting behaviour.
    But your mum kissing your booboo better is okay? It's just the placement of the wound that makes it all suspect? Please. Your comment on it being "paedophilic" is ignorant at best, both of the ritual and what paedophilia actually is.

    There's nothing inherently wrong with the practice outside of the health concerns, which can be dealt with easily, and have been for the most part. Also, "[t]he laws of Western society ban it outright" is just wrong, as they clearly don't, given it's still being practised.
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    (Original post by Hylean)
    Thankfully, the practice isn't as common as the OP would have us think.
    Yeah, I thought as much.
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    (Original post by ihaveyourcat)
    Genuine question- is this common practice? Do many Jewish people do this?
    No, it is not common practice at all.

    So, someone said that around 2000 Jews in New York do it. Considering the fact that 2 million Jews live in New York, only around 0.001% of Jews who live there do it.

    As a Jew myself, I know how rare this process is within the Jewish community - the ultra-orthodox may see it as necessary, as they often take a 'fundamentalist' approach to following the Torah. However, the majority of Jews have progressed from this and think it is just plain weird...
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    (Original post by soindie)
    No, it is not common practice at all.

    So, someone said that around 2000 Jews in New York do it. Considering the fact that 2 million Jews live in New York, only around 0.001% of Jews who live there do it.

    As a Jew myself, I know how rare this process is within the Jewish community - the ultra-orthodox may see it as necessary, as they often take a 'fundamentalist' approach to following the Torah. However, the majority of Jews have progressed from this and think it is just plain weird...
    Is this practice outlined in the Torah, or is it only present in the Oral law?
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    (Original post by imperial maniac)
    For a start it's paedophilia, it also has absolutely no basis in scripture (but even if it does that wouldn't excuse it).
    Come on, it's not paedophilia. Not necessarily anyway. I don't think the reason behind it is to give some old paedos a chance to suck off a baby. Clearly it's very much open to abuse, but it's not inherently paedophilic. It all depends on the intention behind it.
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    (Original post by Hylean)
    But your mum kissing your booboo better is okay? It's just the placement of the wound that makes it all suspect? Please. Your comment on it being "paedophilic" is ignorant at best, both of the ritual and what paedophilia actually is.

    There's nothing inherently wrong with the practice outside of the health concerns, which can be dealt with easily, and have been for the most part. Also, "[t]he laws of Western society ban it outright" is just wrong, as they clearly don't, given it's still being practised.
    Are you seriously suggesting that a stranger sucking the blood off the penis of an infant is similar to a mother kissing her child's injury? They are not comparable in any way.

    If this practice were to occur outside of a religious environment would you attempt to justify it?

    I am absolutely certain that there is a law against an adult sucking an infant's penis. Just because this is a "ritual" does not justify the act.

    The act of sucking an infant's penis is an act of paedophilia, it may not mean that the rabbi enjoys it or gains any sexual pleasure out of it. The act itself is deemed morally unacceptable in our society.

    In exactly the same way that sacrificing virgins to God is banned our society, it is irrelevant that this is taking place in a religious environment. It is still wrong.
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    (Original post by Psyk)
    Come on, it's not paedophilia. Not necessarily anyway. I don't think the reason behind it is to give some old paedos a chance to suck off a baby. Clearly it's very much open to abuse, but it's not inherently paedophilic. It all depends on the intention behind it.
    The intention behind it is totally irrelevant. The act of sucking an infant's penis is paedophilic by it's very nature.

    If I kidnapped someone and tortured them for a religious ritual. I would, quite rightly, be imprisoned. This is no different.

    I am genuinely shocked that you are endorsing this immoral practice.
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    (Original post by TheHuman)
    Is this practice outlined in the Torah, or is it only present in the Oral law?
    The talmud has reference to suction, but no reference to oral suction. Frankly, I think this is just weird. It is followed by a very small minority, the ultra-orthodox, because they follow all the laws and all the customs & traditions. The oral suction dates back to a time when it was the safest and cleanest way of stopping blood leaking. Times have now changed!
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    (Original post by imperial maniac)
    The intention behind it is totally irrelevant. The act of sucking an infant's penis is paedophilic by it's very nature.

    If I kidnapped someone and tortured them for a religious ritual. I would, quite rightly, be imprisoned. This is no different.

    I am genuinely shocked that you are endorsing this immoral practice.
    Presumably if it was a sexual act you'd see the mohel with a hard on. I doubt this is the case in most instances.
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    (Original post by imperial maniac)
    The intention behind it is totally irrelevant. The act of sucking an infant's penis is paedophilic by it's very nature.

    If I kidnapped someone and tortured them for a religious ritual. I would, quite rightly, be imprisoned. This is no different.

    I am genuinely shocked that you are endorsing this immoral practice.
    You are managng to make the position of being against this, which is a very legitimate and correct position, look utterly stupid with your rediculous claims. There is nothing paedophilic full stop - now try and use real arguments.
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    (Original post by Hylean)
    As to the OP, I'd agree with them being done in hospitals, as it's much safer over all. Ban circumcision? No. Not unless you also agree to ban bone lengthening, growth hormones, braces, etc.




    Interestingly, you appear to be wrong in that.

    "Traditionally, metzitzah was accomplished through oral suction, known as "metzitzah b'peh" ["via the mouth"], most likely as this was the best technique available. Beginning in around the 18th Century, however, it was known that this technique itself can spread infection (ironically, prevention of which was the very reason metzitzah was instituted) and harm the baby. Thus, it became quite common in the Jewish world to perform metzitzah via a safe method, such as a sterilized glass tube. This is removes all risk and is almost the universal practice today, although some ultra-Orthodox communities, most notably Hassidic Jews and some communities in Israel, continue to use the oral method.

    Less commonly practiced, and more controversial, is metzitzah b'peh, (alt. mezizah), or oral suction,[10][11] where the mohel sucks blood from the circumcision wound. The traditional reason for this procedure is to minimize the potential for postoperative complications,[12][13] although the practice has been implicated in the spreading of herpes to the infant.[14]

    A sterilized glass tube is now used.[15][16]...

    Because of the risk of infection, some rabbinical authorities have ruled that the traditional practice of direct contact should be replaced by using a glass tube between the wound and the mohel's mouth, so there is no direct oral contact. The Rabbinical Council of America, the largest group of Modern Orthodox rabbis, endorses this method.[29]"

    So really, it's a very small minority within the Jewish community who continue to use the mouth to sterilise. Hardly a reason to call for the outright ban of the practice.





    Thankfully, the practice isn't as common as the OP would have us think.


    wish they would stop it anyway.
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    (Original post by imperial maniac)
    The intention behind it is totally irrelevant. The act of sucking an infant's penis is paedophilic by it's very nature.

    If I kidnapped someone and tortured them for a religious ritual. I would, quite rightly, be imprisoned. This is no different.

    I am genuinely shocked that you are endorsing this immoral practice.
    I'm not endorsing it. I'm against infant circumcision full stop. I just don't think it's necessarily paedophilic. They're (probably) not doing it for sexual pleasure, they're probably not attracted to babies. The motivation for doing it is not sexual, it sounds like the motivation is actually for health and hygeine reasons. Extremely misguided reasons, of course, but that's still their motivation for it, regardless of how wrong they are about it.

    I still agree with banning it. It's weird that whenever you say something isn't paedophilic, people take that to mean you're saying it's ok. Just because something isn't paedophilic, it doesn't mean it's acceptable. Murder is not paedophilic, but that's not acceptable.

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