Mayan Astronomical Secrets By: Thomas Schneider Professor: Harold Williams Astronomy 101
• The Mayans were able to develop a complex calendar system through careful observations with were built upon the foundation set by the Toltecs.• These two primitive civilizations were able to track the movements of stars against the perfectly aligned pyramids which they built
• The Mayan used 17 different calendars in their culture; the two most important being the Tzolk’in and the Haab.• The Tzolk’in is based I the cycles of the Pleiades which is 26,000 years but is used in fractal form containing 260 days which also relates very closely to the time when a woman first stop menstruating and when her child is born.
• The Tzolk’in calendar is divided into 13-20 day months.• The Haab calendar, also called the Long Count Calendar, is the other important Mayan calendar which is based upon the movements of the sun.
• The New Year on the Haab calendar begins at the winter equinox where a figure of a serpent shines through a hole in the wall of a temple and the proceeds to slither up the wall.• The zenith is then calculated to be 60 days later.
• The Haab calendar was created for agricultural purposes and was therefore the Haab dates change in order to accommodate the 365.2422 year which the Mayans were able to calculate with great accuracy.• The Mayan were able to estimate of the year by dividing 1,101,600 by 365, subtracting 2, and taking that number and dividing 1,101,600 by the result, which gives us an answer of 365.242036 days, which is slightly more accurate than the 365.2425 days of the Gregorian calendar.
• The Haab calendar is devided into 18, 20 day months with one 5 day month and the end of the year.• The Tzolk’in calendar by comparison has been followed unbroken for 3,000 years.• By combining the Tzolk’in and Haab calendars a 52 year cycle results which is known as the Calendar round.
• In Mayan culture a person did not become an elder until they had lived through one calendar round.• Through careful observations of the pleiades relative to their massive step pyramids, the Mayans were able to calculate the precession of the earth.
• They then determined through extensive calculations that the May 20, 2012 the Pleiades and the sun would be aligned due to the precession of the earth and will rise at the same time to their Zenith, with the moon reaching it’s zenith on that day as well.
• By December 21, 2012 the Sun will be in alignment with the dark rift in the milky way which happens to be the Galactic center.• This moment signifies then end of the would According to the Mayans.