Elishakoff, I. 2002.
BH 13:193-201. CELD ID 21442
|Probabilistic analysis of the 'Torah Codes': A false premise?|
Counting the letters of the Torah and finding specific patterns in the Torah text is part of the Jewish tradition. The use of computers has enabled more elaborate searches to find patterns or 'code,' especially by equidistant letter skips and the performance of quantitative checks. The promulgators of the 'hidden codes' employ quantitative analysis to claim how miniscule the probabilities are of the 'codes' appearing by chance. They conclude that the 'codes' could only been implanted by the divine Author. Opponents to these conclusions have found similar patterns in other literary texts. One can argue that all texts are written by divine inspiration. On the other hand, as Professor A.M. Hasofer stresses, one ought "not forget that bitter experience has taught us that misinterpretations of our Holy Torah have often resulted in the past in disaster and catastrophe for our people." My paper has a humble objective. I question the very use of probabilistic methods to analyze the significance of equidistant letter sequence Torah 'codes' by both their proponents and opponents. The reason is that in order to apply probabilistic methods the existence of multiple "Torahs" would have to be assumed-inadvertently or deliberately. Can one randomize Torah, as the supporters of the Torah 'codes' in effect suggest, and to which the opponents to the Torah 'codes' seemingly do not object?