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The Mayan calendar was of a highly complex design, advanced and accurate to several decimal places. Yet this incredible work of calculation was achieved well over a thousand years ago. In addition, Mayan knowledge of astronomy, particularly the cycles of the planets and the sidereal year were all expressed to an uncanny degree of accuracy. This work couldn't have been better accomplished with precision measuring devices like those of today. The Mayan calendar is truly an astonishing achievement. It terminates on December 21, 2012 and many have speculated that this signifies the end of the world. However, what is most interesting is the fantastic extent of the time periods that the calendar encompasses. This Long Count of Days, as it is known, consists of the aggregate total of five different time cycles. It means the cumulative total makes possible the accurate dating of events unimaginably distant. The highest unit in this calendar, the alautun, is equivalent to 63 million years. One Mayan inscription from Quirigua mentions events occurring 90 million years ago. Another inscription from the same locality goes back even further to 400 million years. But why use such incredible numbers? What purpose was there for them? For although we ourselves use dates equally as long, they are usually in reference to rather vague geological time periods whose boundaries are difficult to define within a couple of million years. Yet the Mayan records display none of this vagueness. They mention specific dates that are millions of years old. Incredibly, the Mayan calendar provided the ability to refer to events on particular days, weeks, and months many millions of years ago. 

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Originally posted 2017-12-17 19:08:40.