Editor's Note from April 28, 2016
We can’t run an article in The Behemoth on circumcision, can we? We certainly can’t make it the cover story. That would be crazy. The Behemoth is all about finding awe and wonder, reminding people that the world is bigger than their newsfeeds and that God is better than they imagine. An article about why God told Abraham to cut off the end of his penis is just … well, it’s very uncomfortable is what it is! It’s not the kind of thing that’s going to drive pageviews and new subscriptions (and we do want more subscriptions!).
I mean, yes. The Behemoth is about helping people see that God is awesome and good. I can see that in theory, an article about God’s covenant mark could help me see some goodness in something that seems horrific. We did those pieces on hurricanes and whale falls after all. There’s a piece in this issue on the beauty of fermentation, joyful, long-living drinks from decayed fruit. “Beauty for ashes” is one of our recurring themes. But circumcision has a higher bar than a dead whale. An article would have to be about more than God redeeming something negative. This was God’s command. It’d have to convince me that God was doing something magnificent when he told Abraham to make the most personal of cuts. It’d have to do more than make me not say, “Yikes.” It’d have to do more than make me say, “Hmm. That’s interesting.” It’d have to make me say, “Wow. Yay God!”
- Why Did God Choose Circumcision?
The hopeful, beautiful, and terrible reason for the drastic covenant. /
- Wine, Wine, Wine!
We’ve turned dying fruit into a durable drink for millennia but only recently understood it. /
- How Nature Soothes the Soul
Scientific evidence for the benefits of outdoor recreation. /
- The Cranes
“Where along the migratory way” /
- Wonder on the Web
Issue 47: Links to amazing stuff.