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Ancient Cultures and How the Penis Was Viewed

The genitals of both men and women have been the source of much fascination and controversy since the beginning of time. In more recent history, these body parts have received much attention from the scientific world. In the field of Psychology, for instance, studies have been conducted regarding children's first encounters with their genitals. Moreover, Sigmund Freud's controversial "penis envy" and "Oedipus Complex" theories have perceptibly centered on the male sexual organ.

However, this penis fixation did not begin with the advent of psychosexual theories. Before science, the penis has already become the object of much mysticism and religious activity in ancient times. Many of the primitive, non-Christian societies have included fertility and sexuality gods in their worship. In those times the male sexuality was considered a source of power. The perfect examples of these cultures are the Greek and Egyptian. These two widespread and prominent civilizations worshipped gods like Hermes and Dionysius as well as Osiris. Dionysius is the Greek god of fertility, as was Hermes initially. The latter, before becoming simply the Greek gods' messenger, was a fertility idol denoted plainly by a penis. Osiris on the other hand was the powerful Egyptian supreme god, whose myth relates the tale of his brutal murder through dismemberment. According to the legend, all his dismembered body parts were retrieved except his penis, which plummeted through the Nile Ri ver, thus making it fertile and life-sustaining.

Since their religious worship largely influences their art and culture, the Greeks' and Egyptians' penis fixation may be seen until the present time in preserved works of art and other remnants of their civilization. Classical Greek vases, bowls and other sculptures with phallic decorations or form are found displayed in many museums and galleries. For the Egyptians, the famous architectural wonder, the obelisk, represents a similar regard for the

masculine genitalia.

Apart from the Greeks and Egyptians, countries like Peru and India have also been known to celebrate the phallus. The Peruvian pitchers with large spouts in the shape of a penis, which may be found in various antique shops and exhibits, represent the highly erotic Peruvian artistic period of Mochica. Indian culture, on the other hand, is popular for its intense sexuality and erotic mysticism. The Shiva Linga symbolizes their worship for the God Shiva's powerful phallus, which nearly destroyed all life had it not met Parvati's vulva and calmed down.

From all this, it can be gleaned that the penis was widely regarded as both powerful and potentially destructive. Indeed, the god Shiva even had to castrate himself because he had become promiscuous and seductive. Osiris' murder was provoked by his sexual relations with his murderer, Set's, wife. Nevertheless, the penis was then viewed with awe and majesty, and was considered a far superior human organ. This ancient view has far-reaching effects that remain apparent until the present. One such effect is the idea held by many men and women that penis size has some influence on masculinity and potency. Today, men prefer to augment their penis size, subconsciously trying to match the seeming enormity of the ancient penis. After all, with such a glorious history of worship and celebration, penises in ancient times did seem larger-than-life.

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