The sexually emancipated version of the sensory homunculus born at the end of the 20th century shows that the size of the genital area in the earlier classic homunculus was severely underestimated. Still we have reasons to suspect that the size of its penis is also undervalued mainly at the expense of the prepuce. What may be the real size of the genital cortical sensory area, i.e., of the homunculus’ genitalia?
From evolutional point of view the genitalia are crucial to the survival so their cortical sensory areas must be large. It is known that the more ancient the origin of an organ is the more central its position in the brain and the greater its interaction with other functions are. Note that the genital cortical sensory area in the cortical homunculus is in immediate proximity to the upper midbrain. This is logical as the genitalia are the oldest and the most important organs while the midbrain is the oldest part of the central nervous system. However, the miniature representation of the genital sensory area in the cortical homunculus is untrustworthy. In confirmation, many natural men would prefer to lose a finger or even a limb rather than their foreskins.
Are emotions and sexuality inseparably intermingled? Does genital sensitivity relate to emotions? Certainly and categorically the answers to both questions is positive. If someone disagrees that sex and emotion are inseparably intermingled we advise him to turn on the radio or TV and listen to the first pop song or watch any film. Or if he prefers he can read Freud, Jung, Reich and other psychiatric authorities. He can even read the Bible and note its obsession with sin, foreskin and sexuality. Or simply he can sincerely ask or touch himself.
Psychology acknowledges the great importance of genitalia and sex. Freudian psychoanalysis reveals that sexuality is a central organizer of emotions. This is in perfect harmony with the findings of neurophysiology that the genital area is the part of the somatosensory cortex that is closest to the limbic system[i] and the thalamus.[ii] The limbic system and thalamus are some of the oldest brain structures where the subcortical structures and the cerebral cortex meet – i.e., where consciousness and subconsciousness transform into one another. Limbic system is the seat of emotion in the brain. It is involved in excitement, motivation, learning, attention, memory and social processing. The thalamus regulates consciousness, sleep and alertness. Both of them relate to different aspects of memory, perception, behaviour and cognition.
An emotionalized homunculus?
The sensory homunculus represents the density of cutaneous receptors. It does not account for the quality or for the emotional meaning of their information. It represents human sensitivity in a calm unemotional state. It does not reflect the change of brain activity and the expansion of brain centres that take place when passions go high. The sensory homunculus does not show that brain is the main erogenous organ.
Genital sensitivity is so important that it is a synonym of pleasure. Sexual activity deeply stirs our emotions. The sexually emancipated homunculi presented up to here are all in an unexcited state. They do not manifest the immense role of sexual excitation. The true potential of sexually related emotions can be unfolded only if research is performed on sexually aroused subjects. The genital areas of somatosensory cortex in the sexually aroused cortical homunculus must not only reache the emotional core of the brain but spread towards the secondary erogenous zones in the cerebral cortex.
It is difficult to imagine how a sexually and emotionally exited sensory homunculus looks like. Its image could be quite unrepresentative of the human form so we will refrain from depicting it. However, the size of the genitalia of a homunculus that authentically presents the emotional role of sexuality should be the median between the unexcited and sexually exited states. Even the completely sexually emancipated tripodal homunculus that we imagined above is asexual compared to it.
Due to the ignored role of sexual excitement the size of the penis in the circumcised sexually emancipated homunculus is dramatically undervalued at the expense of the foreskin. The genitalia and especially the foreskin of true homunculus should be much larger than shown. Metaphorically, we may say that similarly to the ability of the penis to erect or of the foreskin to unfold the genital sensory area in the cortex expands upon sexual arousal and interconnects otherwise unrelated regions of the brain. Circumcision has profounder mental effects than homunculi imply because it affects not only sensitivity but sexual and emotional excitation. It deeply impinges on both sensitivity and emotion. Shedding children’s blood and causing pain to children is the most innocent consequence of circumcision, one may conclude.