Barry Simon on Torah Codes
Barry Simon is the IBM Professor of Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Caltech and Woody's co-author in the Mother of All... series. As a trained mathematician and Orthodox Jew he became interested in the controversy surrounding codes in the Torah. He decided to put up this site to deal with various aspects of the issues. Woody and WOPR team (thanks guys!) offered to host it. Thanks especially to the Eileen Wharmby, WOPR's masterful webmaster.
Shifting to the first person, I would urge you to be sure to read The Case Against the Codes, my attempt at a careful analysis of all the main intellectual issues here. There is some background on the history of this article that may be useful for you to have. After mulling over these issues for five years, I decided to "go public" and I prepared an article which was published in the March, 1998 issue of Jewish Action, the magazine of the Orthodox Union - the largest organization of Orthodox Jews in the United States. With their permission, this article has been posted on the Internet with additional commentary.
That issue also included replies to my article by Mr. Dorum Witztum (a leading codes searcher) and Rabbi Daniel Mechanic, the head of Aish HaTorah's Discovery Seminar which includes presentations of the Codes. The Case Against the Codes began as a reply to their replies, written for possible inclusion in Jewish Action. In the end because of considerations of length and content, it was decided not to publish it there so it is posted here. However, because of its initial intended audience, there is some terminology that may puzzle some visitors to this site. A glossary is in preparation.
This Codes site will have additional material posted in coming months so check back. In particular, I plan to post a more detailed response to the statements by Mr. Witztum and Rabbi Mechanic about the seriousness of my research. A brief version is posted now.
See the discussion of my Cities Experiment and the LA talk below.
Note all the material on this site is © Barry Simon and should not be posted elsewhere (without Barry's explicit permission) although links to this site are encouraged. The material may be sent electronically, printed out etc. so long as it is not included in a regular publication. Comments may be sent to Barry Simon by email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Articles on this site
A Cities Experiment
A Talk in Los Angeles
On September 8, 1998, Professor Simon gave a talk sponsored by the Jewish Studies Institute (JSI) of Yeshiva of Los Angeles. (Note: That afternoon, Mark McGuire hit his 62nd home run - there is a joke about that at the start.) The talk is available in Real Audio and Real Video formats from 613.org. You will need considerable bandwidth to view the video but the audio should even work on a 28.8 connection. I've also provided links to the download directory in case you prefer to download these files (note that the video file is over 30 MB!!). Finally, I've provided the slides of my presentation which you might like to follow along with the audio. I am the second speaker after introductions by Rabbi Etshalom of JSI. The speaker after me is Rabbi Adlerstein, the director of JSI. The files are large (it's almost a 2 hour presentation) so be patient when the Real Media player first opens.
Articles in Preparation
Links to other sites