Why the Maya Picked 2012 : The Sacred Triple Rebirth of the Sun and the Sacred Tree Over the Maya (cont.)
By Thomas Razzeto
An Extremely Precise Value for the Length of the Year
And now let's go further into the question of how difficult it was for the Maya to restart their calendar exactly on this particular winter solstice from over two thousand, one hundred years away.
Imagine that it is the winter solstice and that you and I want to make a calendar that restarts precisely on the winter solstice ten years from now. We would just multiply the length of the year by ten to get the correct number of days that our calendar would need.
But if we think that the year is exactly 365 days long, rather than the more correct value of 365.2422 days long, then you can see that over ten years, we would be off by more than two days. (3650 days compared with 3652.422 days.) And, if instead, we want the calendar to restart in one hundred years or one thousand years, you can see that we would need to know the length of the year with greater and greater precision.
To intentionally hit this particular winter solstice from that far away, it turns out that the Maya would have needed to know the length of the year to within 45 seconds! This is like measuring the width of the United States to within 20 feet or the distance from Los Angeles to Tokyo to within 40 feet! In terms of a percentage, this is 99.9999 percent correct!
In my opinion, this is not merely remarkable; this is absolutely stunning! In my opinion, this is simply not possible with naked-eye astronomy and opens up the complicated questions of how the Maya knew this amazing astronomy and how they constructed their calendar.
While these questions are quite intriguing, I will leave them for other to discuss, as they are beyond the scope of this essay. Before I conclude this essay, I would like to quickly bring up one more topic.