The circumcision scene at Saqqarah, Sixth dynasty tomb of Ankhmahor Sesi
What does it mean? It means the blood which fell from the phallus of Re when he took to cutting himself. Then there came into being the gods who are in the presence of Re, who are Authority and Intelligence, while I followed after my father Atum daily.
The Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead, R.O. Faulkner, page 45
Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt, Margaret R. Bunson, page 83
Temple of Kom Ombo, Upper Egypt
Crocodile enclosure at temple of Kom Ombo
1563, restored spelling of Middle English cocodrille (c.1300), from Medieval Latin cocodrillus, from Latin crocodilus, from Greek krokodilos, word applied by Herodotus to the crocodile of the Nile, apparently due to its basking habits, from kroke "pebbles" + drilos "worm."
[Middle English cocodril, from Old French, from Latin cocodrillus, variant of crocodlus, from Greek krokodlos : krok, pebble + drlos, circumcised man, worm.]
Djapi circumcision ceremony
Two boys have been rescued from a Transkei initiation school after a so-called traditional surgeon cut off the ends of their penises, the Eastern Cape health department said on Friday.
(Spokesperson Sizwe) Kupelo also said a man nicknamed "the Crocodile" was arrested in Mdantsane on Thursday. He was allegedly part of a group of surgeons who circumcised at least 96 youths.
In Papua New Guinea, a group of initiates is about to enter the final stage of a long and arduous ritual. There is no set age for the rite ... but no one can have full status as a man until he's been scarred with the mark of the crocodile.
Ritual crocodile scars
Once again we have a coming of age ritual connected with crocodiles. At this point we have established some kind of connection and a base idea of circumcision as an initiatory ceremony practiced on pubescent boys entering into manhood. However it still is unclear how this possibly ties in with the Old Testament act that is a covenant between YHVH and the Israelites. Before exploring that connection it is time to get a better understanding of this Sebek character of the ancient Egyptian pantheon of gods.
Sebek at temple of Kom Ombo
Sebek is the son of Neith, Neith being the goddess of wisdom and warfare often shown wearing the red crown of lower Egypt.
Ancient egyptian representations of the goddess Neith
She can be shown nursing a baby crocodile and as such one of her epithets is 'the nurse of crocodiles'. Neith's counterpart in the Greek pantheon is Athena, the goddess of wisdom and just warfare. The red crown is a designation that her power resides in the material plane and from this we can extrapolate the same for Sebek. Sebek symbolized the might and power of the Pharaoh and was associated with the power of the sun; this power being Re in ancient Egypt. As noted earlier Sebek is known as Sebek-Re, telling us that his power is a result of being a chthonic aspect of Re.
Sebek with sun disk on column at temple of Kom Ombo
The temple of Kom Ombo is divided into two distinct areas. The south half is consecrated to Sebek and the northern half to Horus. You find this division of south and north a great deal with Set and Horus throughout pre-dynastic and dynastic Egypt. The temple seems to represent the Ptolemaic Pharaoh worshipping both of the powers of the life force and the soul, what the ancient Egyptians would call Ka and Ba respectively.
Pharaoh offers to Horus at temple of Kom Ombo
Pharaoh offers to Sebek at temple of Kom Ombo
The crocodile also expresses our understanding of earthy time as action through duality. It possesses strong eyesight, which expresses the power of initiate, and it sees only forward and sideways, not backward, emphasizing the idea of time, since it is only possible for time to travel forward.
The Illustrated Egyptian Book of the Dead, Dr. Ramses Seleem, pages 37-38
“Sobek, Lord of the Land of the Lake.” In Divine Creatures : Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt, edited by Salima Ikram, 199-206. Cairo: The American University in Cairo Press, 2005, Edda Bresciani, page 199
The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2005, James P. Allen, page 60
12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed.
13 He that is born in thy house, and he that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.
14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant.
25 Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.
26 So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.
Plutarch's statement (Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride c. 19.) that Seth was deserted by his concubine Thoeris is significant here, for Thoeris, the pregnant hippopotamus, is the protectress of women in pregnancy. One of the names of Bes, who has feminine traits as well as masculine ones, is Hit. Abortions were put into his care and even buried in wooden Bes figures. One of the meanings of the verb h3i is "to commit abortion." A relation between this verb and one of the names of Seth, h3y or hy, cannot be determined with certainty. In a Turin pap. Seth says:
"I am a Man of a million cubits, whose name is Evil Day. As for the day of giving birth or conceiving, there is no giving birth and trees bear no fruit".
Seth, God of Confusion, H Te Velde, pages 28-29
It is apt that a reptile is born into water and then eventually makes its way onto land. The behaviour of the crocodile has been assimilated into the ritual act of circumcision. The result is an aggressive, domineering, hyper-sexual alpha male.