Circumcision Not Recommended

During the Jewish Reformation, abandoning brit milah was discussed, but kept for identity reasons. For Reform Jews today, circumcision is often more of a cultural tradition than religious rite; since they generally do not employ a mohel to perform the circumcision on the eighth day, but a physician (often a non-Jew) shortly after birth. Talk with a rabbi if you are confused or conflicted about ritual circumcision. Consider an alternate ritual like brit shalom or brit ben.

All American citizens have freedom of religion. You might consider that, although you are a practicing Jew, your son might not choose that religion for himself and, by circumcising him, you are denying his freedom of religion. Not all Jews, including some Rabbis, circumcise their sons, believing that circumcision is inconsistent with the Jewish ethical imperative to not harm another human being.1

This information has been reviewed by our panel of experts and other trusted advisors, however, it is not a substitute for professional medical, legal, or spiritual advice.

  1. Marked in Your Flesh, by Leonard B. Glick, Oxford, 2005
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