Crop Circles

A Complex Beauty

By
Patrick Cooke

            In the incredible world of unexplained phenomenon, crop circles are in their own class. Pleasing to the eye and challenging to the mind, they have spawned online galleries, photo books, new mathematical concepts, and advanced circuit design. Computers, using the formations as visual symphonic scores, have even generated music. Almost every country on Earth has been used as a green canvas, and as far as can be determined, every work is unique. Domestic crops are not the only setting for anomalous circles, however. Snow banks, ice ponds, sand, and entire forests have been altered. Over 10,000 circles have been recorded in recent years, worldwide, with the circles averaging 150 feet in diameter.

A Hoax By Hoaxers
            As with all paranormal activity, there is controversy about the source. To many, the crop circles are no longer a mystery, they are obviously manmade. This stems from a widely publicized admission in the 1990s by two retired gentlemen in Hampshire, UK, Doug Bower and Dave Chorley, that they were the crop circle makers/hoaxers and they tried to prove it by demonstrating how they accomplished the feat using boards and ropes. No explanation was given for the many doubts raised by their story such as how they were able to create up to 30 in one night over a radius of over 200 miles. No hint was given how, in one year, they could have produced over 200 circles with precision measurements accurate to 1/4 inch over 1000 feet in total darkness. Also, not explained, was how, in some instances, they were able to produce the anomaly in ten seconds, undetected, in full view of eyewitnesses. Their claim, however, received worldwide publicity and to this day is considered by many as the final explanation.

            This unfortunate case by two very savvy publicity gluttons cast a shadow over interest until the public was educated about the major flaw in their argument. Contrary to popular belief, trampling, breaking or bending the stalks of the plants affected does not make crop circles. The stalk of each plant is softened by heat at a precise point by an, as yet, unidentified force which causes the entire stalk to collapse. This same force, with incredible mathematical detail, lays the entire flattened area in interwoven, swirled layers .

Mathematical Marvels
            The increasing complexity and obvious advanced nature of the circles has amazed scientists who, though obviously interested in the creators, find intense interest in the manner mathematical formulae are incorporated in the designs. The beauty of these intricate formations is evident to all who see them, but to the mathematical mind there appears a deeper beauty. Perfect geometric designs are the norm and incredibly accurate measurements over thousands of feet awe even the most complicated minds. Consistent mathematical ratios are associated with the designs and Julius sets, related to the science of fractals, appear in ever more complex series. New areas of science and mathematics are being created by the phenomenon.

Overnight Wonders
            Most crop circles materialize overnight, while only a few have appeared during the day. One rather intricate pattern, literally across the road from Stonehenge, is known to have formed in under an hour, in broad daylight. Spread over hundreds of square miles, as many as 30 arrays, some being as wide as 4000 feet, have appeared in one night. No small accomplishment, considering it is all done in the dark. The hoaxers, who claim to be the master designers, could only produce their inferior circles in the light of day. Many separate case studies show that, indeed, it is common for a farmer to leave his field intact at dusk and return to find a work of crop art impressed in his field the next morning.

Strange Vibrations
            Farmers are known to charge admission to their altered fields for those who wish to share the experience and are not even distressed by sometimes thousands of square feet of flattened plants. Surprisingly, the formation of crop circles does little or no damage, and the crops continue to grow and are harvested. It does, however, seem to distress the other living creatures in and around the immediate area of a formation. Animals, birds, and insects in the areas depressed are often found flattened, fried, or otherwise instantly killed. Surviving wild and domesticated animals will immediately evacuate the area and, in some cases, refuse to return for up to a year. Farm animals exhibit strange behavior while the circles are forming, some running from the scene to the farthest point away from the action and will not even graze close to them for long periods of time. Humans, on the other hand, are curiously drawn to these strange works of art. It has been noted that cell phones and other electronic devices are also affected.

The Evolution of a Phenomenon
            The crop circle phenomenon has shown a progressive evolution since the 1970s when their presence came into the public realm. They have grown in size, complexity, number of components, types of design, and beauty. The most noteworthy progression is the transformation from simple circles to complex mathematical and geometric forms. They havenít just gotten bigger and more attractive, they have become scientifically relevant. It defies reason at this point to consider that these are natural or random in origin. Someone, or something, is definitely trying to convey a message to mankind.

The Usual Suspects
♦  Human Circle Makers
            The least likely culprit is man. The sheer number, complexity, nocturnal appearances, and worldwide presence of the phenomenon present the alibi of logic. Not enough unemployed scientific and artistic geniuses to go around, man's need for great quantities of light to work at night, and no evidence of human presence puts this theory to rest. There are those that claim they are the source, calling themselves Circle Makers. All things considered, it is not irrational to label these "wannabes" as imposters at best and prevaricators at worst.
♦  The Wind
            The official government explanation is that whirlwinds, created by heat thermals, are the true cause of the crop circle anomaly. There are only three problems with this theory. Heat thermals occur in the heat of the day, crop circles are formed almost exclusively at night. Whirlwinds are not famous for producing intricate designs in nature, while crop circles are anything but random swirls. Whirlwinds do extreme damage to plants, while plants within crop circles are virtually undamaged by the events. This is a patently ridiculous notion, to say the least. Swamp gas might even sound better.
♦  The Government
            Many speculations about the government's space-based military projects as the cause are often theorized. It is assumed that the government is making these patterns with some new space-based technology. Considering that this phenomenon has been recorded well before our presence in space would not even allow this theory any credibility, we are left with an obvious question. Who was doing this before the government was even in space with anything but primitive satellites?
♦  Plasmas
            Theories that plasmas, such as ball lightning and sprites, are the cause of the crop circles point directly to the impossibility of a random unintelligent force behind the occurrences. This theory makes even whirlwinds look practical.
♦  Mating Hedgehogs
            Yes, even the mating rituals of hedgehogs and scampering porcupines have been blamed. Nothing more need be said on this one.
♦  Unidentified Flying Objects
            Bright lights, beams of light, orange balls, golden globes, and an assortment of flying and hovering objects have been associated with crop circles by those most important, the witnesses. Ask the people that were there and they'll tell you what caused it, UFOs, plain and simple. Of course, these people are only honest, hard working, intelligent civilians, not spin doctors, our self-chosen gurus. Anybody in authority that makes such a report is considered as obviously insane, so their credibility doesn't count anyway. Besides, they will eventually change their stories, if they want to keep their jobs or any sense of a normal life.

What is Known
♦  Evidence of the Artist
            The cover of darkness only works some of the time. Many eyewitness accounts testify to a variety of lights, in many colors, that dance across the fields and hover, projecting beams of light on the ground. The product of this artistic light show is seen in stunning display as the day breaks across the natural canvas. Strange sounds are reported in the vicinity of crop circle formations and often are the only indication that a work is in progress.
♦  Altered States
            From a distance, the area that forms the design appears to have been flattened by a small, and very versatile, steamroller. But closer examination reveals an intricate method used to create the depressions. Millions of plants are delicately interwoven as though a mat was being made. At the same time, many levels of these swirling and living mats are layered in alternating clockwise and counter-clockwise patterns. They are not broken, but gently bent into shape with no damage to the plants, which will continue to grow and produce, as though nothing unusual has taken place. That is the outward appearance, what's inside the plant has also been changed. Whatever process is employed, it actually alters the fundamental biophysics and biochemistry of the plants. Some have described the effect as resembling an exposure to intense, but not harmful, microwave radiation. The entire surface of some formations is glazed with a layer of minute particles of pure iron, while areas just outside the effected areas are not. The purity of these particles is not found in iron produced anywhere on Earth.
♦  The Cattle Connection
            The other phenomenon associated with agriculture is bovine excisions, commonly known as cattle mutilations. The anomalies shared with crop circles are strikingly similar. Both happen almost exclusively at night, with no evidence of human or mechanical presence. Strange lights and objects in the immediate vicinity of excisions and circles are commonly reported. Extraordinary sounds are heard in both situations. Animals will not eat the excised animal carcasses or the altered plants and wild as well as domesticated animals scrupulously avoid the areas of the anomalies. Alteration of plants is common and the most stunning parallel is also the most unearthly. The same highly purified particles of refined iron are present in the excisions as well as crop circle formations. Since the metal calling card is almost exclusive to these two anomalies, it's a good bet that the same force is responsible for both. Pure iron is also found in the anomalous iron pillars found throughout India and at UFO landing sites not connected to agriglyphs or large animal excisions.

A Logical Conclusion
            In simple terms, whatever the force or entity may be that is producing crop circles; it is not from the known world. They are reported all over the globe, affecting an unlimited variety of plants and environs. Writing has even appeared, interpreted to reveal ominous statements of displeasure by the authors. It is even more ominous that our leaders are either ignoring the evidence or, worse still, hiding any truth they may have discovered. If the latter is the case, they are committing the worst type of social crime. Hiding such incredible truth is no less a crime than misrepresenting it.
            This is what we know. What we don't know is without measure. One thing is certain though; crop circles are without equal in design and beauty. Until the true circle makers reveal their purpose, the truth will remain a mystery. At this point, we are left viewing these design masterpieces much as we would works of art in a gallery. Only the artists' names are missing from the canvas.

The Links

     The social phenomenon of marking territory is such a common occurrence that it is as accepted as naming a child.  It is only brought to the forefront when "taggers", graffiti artists, place their unwanted monikers on public or private property.  No one gives a thought to city limit signs, business logos, and the everyday indications that denote territorial control.  Suddenly, a new tagger is on the scene, with a whole new way of letting the world know that they are here.  What they are trying to convey is as mysterious as those who tag the New York City subway trains, but it brings the field of graffiti art to a higher level.  As creative and diversified as taggers can get, this one is leaving the others in the dust.  The domain is not a few blocks or stretch of track, this one is claiming the world as its turf.  They strike at night, almost undetected, do no harm to property, and leave  tag designs that end up in galleries and grace calendars.  Here is the work:

Busty Taylor Crop Circle Page
Canadian Crop Circle Research Network
Crop Circle Alphabet
Crop Circle Connector
Crop Circle Reports
Crop Circles Deciphered
Crop Circle Research
Crystalinks Crop Circles
Lucy Pringle's Crop Circles Page
Midwest Research
Peter Sorenson's Page
Swirled News

The Crop Circular
Theories on the Formation of Crop Circles

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