A cult, founded by Kondratji Selivanov, in Russia, during the 18th century. They are also known as the "Castrated." Having their roots in the earlier Flagellant movement, the Skoptsi took the Flagellant's credo of self-abnegation quite a few steps further. Disdainful of the body and of the sexual urge, they believed that the voluntary removal of the genitalia permitted vast amounts of spiritual energy to break free from the shackles of the flesh. This excess energy could then be rechanneled to more spiritual purposes, such as meditation and prayer, and ultimately be used to achieve unity with God.

Selivanov and his followers believed that the Old Testament command for circumcision was in fact a command for castration.

Thanks to Mr. Bungle (on Vanity Fair) for bringing this sicko cult to my attention