On the morning of the brit, ritual circumcision, the father immerses in a mikvah, a ritual bath.1 Although he may taste some food, it is customary that the father of the child does not sit down to an entire meal prior to the circumcision. In addition, he does not work until after the circumcision is complete.2

The mohel, ritual circumciser, and the sandek, the one who will hold the child during the circumcision, also immerse themselves in a ritual bath to achieve an extra level of spiritual purity and sanctification.3

The infant is bathed and dressed in fine clothing in honor of the occasion.4 A clean and preferably decorative pillow is prepared for the baby. Some have the custom to lay a skullcap upon the baby’s head.5

In honor of the joyous occasion,6 it is customary to have many candles lit in the hall where the circumcision will take place.7 The custom in many Sephardic communities is for each participant to be honored with lighting a candle. The participant lights his or her candle and gives charity in merit of this honor.8

It is considered a wonderful honor to have many people — at minimum a quorum of ten men9 — join in celebrating this occasion. Those present at a ritual circumcision, are considered10 to have greeted G‑d’s presence, and those attending a circumcision are said to receive an additional soul for the duration of the event,11 just as one is given an additional soul on Shabbat and Jewish Holidays.