God appeared to Abraham because after endless good deeds that he had done to age 99 he still felt himself uncircumcised.
To circumcise oneself is to give physical expression to the power of the soul, within a body, to transcend one’s innate character.
Abraham had no one to circumcise him, he had to circumcise himself, but he was commanded from then on that father circumcise son.
The Torah speaks of 4 circumcisions. One, the circumcision of the flesh, is the duty of father to son, the other three are one’s own duty.
We are commanded to circumcise our heart, our ears, and our lips, to remove from them the coarse foreskin of egocentricity.
The circumcision of our heart takes place (in particular) on Yom Kippur, of our ears on Simchat Torah, and of our lips on Chanukah.
With regard to the eyes it says, “I have made a covenant with my eyes…,” but without the words “circumcise” or “foreskin.”
There is no foreskin covering the eyes that must be cut away, one must just make a covenant with his eyes to see only good and modest things
Circumcision in Hebrew means also to reveal. Under your skin (foreskin) are precious jewels. Cut away your foreskin and become rich.
Before the primordial sin, Adam and Eve’s skin was not like ours. It was a brilliantly shining electric garb.
After the primordial sin our skin became “snake skin.” Overt self-consciousness, the result of the sin, became physical as our skin.
Snake is sin ache. Skin is sin with the snake’s k. An expression of self-consciousness is caring too much over the appearance of your skin.
The sages say that women are born circumcised. It is okay for them to look at themselves in the mirror – not so for men!
As with regard to circumcision, women have less active commandments than men because they have a greater innate connection to God than men.