Howard Barry Schatz is a retired computer specialist, classically trained composer, jazz musician, archaeomusicologist, teacher, author, and lecturer. He has spent the last 45 years deciphering and authenticating monotheism’s most ancient and sacred text, called the Sefer Yetzirah (Book of Creation). These are the only writings attributed to the great patriarch Abraham by many within the Chasidic Jewish community, and within that community they are the seminal writings on monotheism and Kabbalah. History’s greatest Jewish scholars have tried and failed to interpret the Book of Creation correctly, including: R. Saadia Gaon, Abraham Abulafia, R. Eleazar of Worms, R. Moses Cordovero, R. Isaac Luria, etc. so what would make Howard believe that he succeeded where so many renowned Jewish scholars have failed? Here is an excerpt from his third, soon to be published book:
About 20 years ago I learned of two important Jewish scholars, Leo Baeck (1873-1956) and Gershom Scholem (1897-1982), who both believed that the Book of Creation could only be deciphered by applying the Pythagorean tradition better known as the “Harmony of the Spheres.” Unfortunately, neither Baeck nor Scholem knew enough of the appropriate Pythagorean mathematical details to support their theory. None of the great scholars who have written commentaries on this ancient and sacred text ever realized that it is actually a Base 60 mathematical treatise on ancient string theory, whereas my own education has uniquely prepared me to recognize an ancient Pythagorean mathematical treatise when I see one. Baeck and Scholem were absolutely right, but the difference is that I can prove it.
While still an undergraduate student at Brooklyn College, I had the good fortune to study independently with Dr. Ernest McClain, who taught me how f the Pythagorean tradition — better known as the “Harmony of the Spheres” — was the key to deciphering the mathematical riddles embedded within Plato’s dialogues in passages that had plagued classical scholars for centuries. During my two years of study with McClain, I also managed to audit a few courses at a Chasidic Yeshiva in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. To my surprise and delight I discovered that mathematical riddles, very much like the ones McClain taught me to discern within Plato’s dialogues, also appeared in two sacred Jewish texts: Abraham’s Sefer Yetzirah and an 18th century Kabbalistic text known The Tanya. My findings were published in Dr. McClain’s first book, The Myth of Invariance: the Origin of the Gods, Mathematics and Music from the RG Veda to Plato.
After graduating from college, McClain and I lost touch with one another, but we both spent the next 30 years trying to decipher the Book of Creation completely unaware of the other’s efforts. By 2006, I was able to complete a draft of my first book in which I deciphered all of the text’s mathematical riddles and managed to unravel exactly how they were all directly encrypted within the holiest name of God, יהוה (YHVH, Yahweh, or Jehovah). I then applied this mathematical יהוה template to the textual exegesis of the Hebrew Bible. Despite the academic world’s inability to ever link the two texts together, it turns out that they are tightly coupled. Key passages of Biblical allegory are embroidered around this lost Abrahamic mathematics. One might go so far as to suggest that יהוה is effectively the owner’s manual for the Hebrew Scriptures.
Once I completed my first book, I reconnected with my old mentor, who was 88 at the time. During that meeting, McClain admitted to me that I had been his only student in Pythagorean studies throughout his long teaching career, and he was thrilled that I stayed with it. After reading a draft of my book, he graciously offered to write my Foreword. He then gave a copy to his mentor, Siegmund Levarie. After reading my book, Levarie invited me to his brownstone in Brooklyn. Not being one for small talk, he peered down at me over his half-frame reading glasses, and in his thick Viennese accent said, “You know son, you’re the only living person to have figured out the Sefer Yetzirah.” My response was a bit cocky: “What do you mean the only living person?” Since I was quite sure that I was the only person to have figured out this arcane text. With that, Levarie seemed to bolt upstairs to his library, waving for me to follow him. He took down a large leather-bound book from the shelves and laid it out on his desk. It was a German text called Harmonikale Symbolik des Alterthum (The Harmonic Symbolism of Antiquity). It was written in 1868 by a German judge and member of the Prussian Reichstag named Albert von Thimus. Levarie said it took him 35 years to find a copy of this text. As we leafed through its pages together, he turned to a page that spoke about the Sefer Yetzirah and then he turned to a mathematical table that closely resembled the 231 Gates “master” Table that I had painstakingly derived from the Sefer Yetzirah. Minor differences between the harmonic table that I derived and the von Thimus version proved to be important when I applied my table to the exegesis of Biblical allegory. As of this writing, the von Thimus’ text still has not been translated into English, so it is difficult for me to assess whether von Thimus was also able to tightly couple this mathematics to Biblical allegory in the same way that I did. What I took away from this remarkable day with Professor Levarie, is that I might not have been the first to decipher the Sefer Yetzirah, but by showing me the von Thimus text, Levarie had effectively corroborated my work.