The blind spot of Freudian psychology
The castration complex was invented by a psychology that overstated children’s sexuality and that was unappreciative of erogenous deficiency. We are inclined to think that it exaggerated children’s sexuality exactly because his originator was subjected to the erogenous deficiency caused by circumcision.
Freud strived to explain sexual frustration because he experienced disaffection due to his own erogenous deficiency. But having no sense for the lost sensitivity, he nominated an irrational fear of emasculation as the reason for the frustration. Consequently he introduced the castration complex which, however, is an entirely theoretical construction that remains unproved until today.
In effect, castration complex has officially overridden the circumcision complex and has deprived it of the right to exist. We are trying here to compensate for that injustice. However, we are not so rash or vindictive as to completely outlaw the existence of the castration anxiety. We merely disconnect it from the fear of castration and from oedipal feelings and show that it is most likely to be induced by other factors.
In the end it is not Freud’s fault that circumcision is the blind spot of his psychology. It is his natural followers to be blamed for having remained gorgonized by the oversimplified concepts it has been producingfor too long.
Irrationality of the castration complex
According to Freud the castration complex stems from the inborn sexual desire for the mother and imprinted irrational fear of the father that is deposited in the unconscious during the cruel ancient times.
Imprinting fears, however, implies that an attitude or knowledge can be inherited which contradicts modern biology. To genetics the transfer of information without a material carrier such as gene is unacceptable. Such a transfer could only mean that emotions modify genes which disagree with the conservatism of heredity. Even if imprinting of emotions is possible it happens in ways too subtle to be scientifically established and hence its effect will be short-term. A non-genetic transfer of attitudes through countless generations is not merely scientifically irrational but is evolutionary objectionable. A non-genetic transfer of information could overburden individuals with unneeded irrelevant issues. This could make them increasingly inadequate and interfere with evolution. Children’s sex-lust is a postulate that contradicts hormonal facts while fear of castration is uninheritable. And this, of course, makes Freudian theory conjectural and abstract. No matter how logical the castration complex appears its base is irrational.
Freud attributed frustration to the irrational fear of the father and hence suggested that neuroses are irrational, inadequate and self-made mental dispositions. The great sexuality of children as well as the inheritance of attitudes and feelings, however, are biologically inconsistent and are scientifically disproved. This suggests that the irrational concept of the castration complex was possibly formed by his own psychological projection inflated with his own erogenous deficiency. Perhaps castration complex is truly brain-generated but by a single unique mind.
The fear of the father is an insinuation that is supported by a myth similar to the Original Sin doctrine. Once upon a time Adam was disobedient and God punished him: since then all men have been sinners. Similarly Freud mythologized that fathers were once cruel and castrated their sons (but not all of them) so today all of us fear castration. The Circumcision complex, however, rectifies the irrationality of psychoanalytic theory at a low price. It demythologizes the personages of the Oedipus conflict and presents them as concrete biological entities. The Circumcision complex alters causality and changes the scope of the concepts of Freudian theory but gives it a rational physical base that is consistent with modern neurobiology. Those who admire Freud must be glad instead of irritated by the addition of a concrete, rational and pragmatic basis to his theory.