Is the World Really Ending on June 21st 2020?
With everything that has been happening this year, it wouldn't be hard to believe that the world is coming to an end. Recently there have been talks that our time on earth may actually be coming to a close after a recalculation of the Mayan calendar.
According to NewsWeek, a series of deleted tweets surfaced, that claimed the Mayans calendar ended this week, which meant the world was going to end on June 21st, 2020. Mayans recalculated the date the calendar ended. Turns out, they were incorrect and the world is not ending anytime soon.
"The Maya never predicted a world's end or a doomsday," said Elizabeth Graham, a professor from UCL Institute of Archaeology. "Referring to future dates by rulers was not uncommon noting we currently use future dates when discussing climate change.”
Graham also pointed out that the "calculations do not add up because the Maya counted in days rather than years. The Maya calendar refers to the end of a major calendrical round or cycle, called the baktun. A baktun is 144,000 days. The Maya did not count by what we call 'years'. They used only days. So they did not have to worry about a 'year' being an inexact number of days.”
Graham addressed the faults of the Mayan calendar and how anyone could possibly predict the end of the world. "Once we know how many past days are referred to in an inscription, and we want to find the equivalent in our calendar, we do have to figure out how many days are actually covered by the 'years' in our calendar, because our 'years' vary in number of days," she said. "We do this now by adding a day every four years. But there are standard tables that cover all this which Mayanists use. Nowadays though, we can just go online and use a computer programme."
The Mayans attempted to predict the world ending in the past. The latest being December 21st, 2012. Susan Gillespie, a University of Florida professor, said that the Mayan calendar does not need to be corrected and that the “end of the world” predictions are associated with religious values.