The Mayan Sacred Calendar is Encoded in the Toniná Acropolis
Significant numbers in the calendar board correspond to the design and structure of the Toniná Acropolis. Embedded in a pattern called the Grecas, they were designed to enable future generations to reconstruct the calendar, probably with the aid of information stored elsewhere in stone beneath the site or at other ruins in Chiapas. This would have been similar to that the Giza pyramid of Egypt, which has been proven to encode a variety of calendrical, astronomical and mathematical data, as established by Robert Bauval and others.
The Foundation of the Toniná Acropolis
The hill was landscaped by the Maya to form seven platforms. On them they built thirteen temples. 7 platforms times 13 temples = 20 nahuales. 20 x 13 = 260. The fundamental design of the Acropolis (7 artificial platforms and 13 temples) is based on key numbers from the Sacred Calendar.
Ceremonial Purpose of the 260 Steps
If the Toniná Acropolis structure is based on the 260-day calendar, then the 260 steps would have had a ceremonial purpose. One such application would be for Maya priests to pause on each step and count out the name and nahual of its corresponding day sign in the 260 days of the calendar. In this way, ritual was built into the site's design.
20 Steps at Base of Toniná Acropolis
Subsets of steps at the site are also linked to the calendar. From the base to the first level, for example, there are 20 steps from the base to the first level. The 20 steps can be used as the basis of a ceremony in which each of the 20 nahuales is celebrated or honored on one of the steps. The initial and last nahual would depend on the specific ceremony and date.
The Observatories at Toniná
Four observatories are found on the Acropolis. As at Chichen Itza and other ancient sites around the world, small windows were aligned with the passage of certain planets or stars in order to track their movements and orbits.
One of the observatories at Toniná is a two-level structure whose second floor is almost completely destroyed; only a single small square window remains.
This Mayan observatory has 13 windows, matching most important number of Mesoamerican cosmology and the Sacred Calendar. In order to reach the platform with this observatory, which faces north, it is necessary to climb 7 steps to a small shelf, then 13 more steps to the next platform, for a total of 20, the number of nahuales.The ground floor has a total of 13 small square windows.
The 13 windows, with entrance to the room at bottom (placement not precise)
Observatories are also found at Chichen Itza, Palenque, Uaxactun and other Mayan sites. But because Toniná is built on a hill, it is the highest structure in all of Mesoamerica, even taller than the Pyramid of the Sun at Teotihuacan. Modern observatories are also situated on the highest mountains of the planet.
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