The word Bris means covenant; the word Milah, to cut.
Ritual circumcision is the covenant G-d has established with the Jewish people through the commandment of circumcision.
Judaism views body and soul as holy partners in serving G-d. Therefore, the bris is performed on the most physical part, for all of man is holy before his Creator. Bris Milah joins the forces of body and soul together in serving G-d.
The Bris ceremony has two parts:
the actual circumcision and the naming.
It is customary to honor family and friends to participate in holding the baby at various parts of the bris. The highest honor is to be the sandak, who holds the baby during the actual circumcision. It is not required to have a minyan- a group of ten at the bris. The parents can choose to have a private ceremony on the eighth day and have a reception on a later day when they are more rested.
On the Ellen DeGeneres Show Feb. 20th, 2008 Christina Aguilera proudly spoke about her new son Max. The subject of his Bris was brought up. Much laughter and it was revealed that following tradition, a celebration was held in the form of a party. Christina says that her house was decorated in penis shaped balloons and giggled like a school girl over it. Beliefs and celebrations aside, who the hell goes on national television and openly laughs about their son's circumcision and the balloons. As was pointed out to me after discussing this with a friend, imagine how that child will feel when in 15 years his peers taunt him over it, will he be pleased that she announced to the world in the manner that she did. Wouldn't it be his choice to inform people of such a personal issue?