Crab Wood, Sparsholt, Hants.
(Enmill Road, near Enmill Barn)
Detail & Location: This circle was reported on the 24th of April. It is in a field of Oilseed Rape (Canola) and measures approximately 100ft in diameter. See the Google Maps link for precise location.
Visiting: As far as we are aware the farmer has not given permission for visitors. Please do not visit this circle without express permission from the farmer.
History: This particular area of Hampshire is famed for the appearance of the huge ‘Alien Face and Disc’ crop circle, in the summer of 2002. This years crop circle (2022) is to the south and east of the location of the Alien and Disc.
About this crop circle: This is a small, but neat crop circle to open the 2022 crop circle season. Very often, the opening circles of the season tend to be small and less complex than the circles that appear at the height of the season. There have of course, been years where this has not been so, but as a general pattern, the circle season often begins small and quite slowly.
Oilseed Rape (or Canola), is usually the first crop that the phenomenon appears in each year. It’s the first crop grown in the UK tall enough to hold a crop circle. We may get a few circles in this crop early each year however, some years there has been none. The crop is immediately identifiable by its characteristic bright yellow, sweet-smelling flowers. It is a member of the cabbage family, which you will notice straightaway when in close proximity to it as accompanying the sweet smell of its flowers is a very distinct cabbage-like smell. It is a coarse, rubbery, kind of plant, and is not easily flattened without damaging the stems of the plants, scrape marks and broken stems is not a great sign. However, as with all crop circles, unless you can be sure you were the first inside, it is difficult to make a judgement about damage on the ground.
This particular crop circle is a classic quintuplet design. This kind of design, four equidistant circles around a central fifth, is a design that harks back to the early modern-era of the crop circle phenomenon (late 1980s – early 1990s). The crop circle phenomenon rather enigmatically, often offers us riffs on early design types – quintuplets, dumbbells, concentric rings and other motifs; it keeps its origins ever present. The reason for this is a fascinating subject for speculation and conjecture.
The geometer Allan Brown, once showed that most of the quintuplet-type crop circles share an interesting geometric property and that is that the vast majority of them Square the Circle. The designs contain implicit squares and circles that are equal – whether in area or perimeter. The fact that these designs are such a favourite of the circle-makers, again makes for interesting speculation.
The Squaring of the Circle is an old geometer’s conundrum about how to draw a circle and a square with either equal areas or perimeters – the catch was you could only use a compass and straight-edge to accomplish the task. This is equally a conundrum about the philosophy of shape, space and proportion, as it is about the practical geometry itself. The issue at the heart of the conundrum is in the symbolism of the circle and the square. The circle, the first geometric shape, is symbolic of the Divine, the whole, or the Absolute whereas, the square represents the earthly realm of matter and the manifest. To square the circle is to bring these two realms into harmony – to bring Heaven to Earth. This latent spiritual message in the designs of these crop circles might be said to tell us something about the nature and intent of the phenomenon as a whole. It’s another area for some fascinating debate.
Please see the Geometry Gallery below for information about the geometry of this circle as we have it.
Visiting the Circles? If you are thinking of visiting any crop circles this summer, please read our Visiting the Crop Circles section. It’s full of useful information and etiquette for visiting the countryside and the crop circles. Please remember that you should not enter any fields without the express permission of the farmer and you will need to be aware of and abide by any restrictions in place in the UK in response to the Covid-19 pandemic – which at the time of writing is none.
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Please Help to keep us Flying in 2022: If you have enjoyed looking at our pictures and information please consider making a small donation to keep us flying. There are so few of us left regularly recording the circles it’s really important that we continue. And while some now use drones to record the circles, it is important that there are still images taken from aircraft where the best quality camera equipment can be used and images that include the broad vista of the landscape can be taken. This kind of photography is expensive and it gets harder with each passing year to raise the funds we need to continue our work, but if everyone who regularly looked at this website made a small donation we would meet the funds we need. You can make a donation here.
NOTE: Some of the images below are beautiful landscape scenes. Click on each image to enlarge them and see the whole picture.
As Above, So Below
Part One: Echoes
The Ever-Present Origin
The first crop circle of 2022 was reported on the 24th of April, near Sparsholt in Hampshire, not far from the site of the famous Alien Face & Disc in 2002.
As so often happens at the beginning of a crop circle season, the first circles tend to be modest in design and size and they often hark back to the designs of the early days of the phenomenon. It’s like they are getting warmed up and perhaps also welcoming any newcomers. “Come-on, catch-up” they seem to say as they lead us on yet another merry dance around the summer fields.
This reminds me very much of the ideas of the philosopher Jean Gebser. When writing about the development of human consciousness (in 5 stated stages) he explained that, rather than each stage being discarded in favour of the entirely new, the origins of all remain ever-present.
The same idea seems to hold for the crop circle phenomenon. Despite all the sophisticated evolution in designs over the last 30+ years, we still get simple circles, quintuplets, dumbbells and other early-type designs appearing in our fields each summer.
Our past is not something we should forget, or simply discard they seem to tell us, we are the product of our own evolution and it is as vital to understanding ourselves, as those early crop circle designs are to understanding the whole of the crop circle phenomenon.
This idea of wholeness, an almost holographic echoing of ideas across phenomena, is something that we’ll come back to.
The Quintuplet (or Quincunx) has a long history in the crop circle phenomenon, the first recorded crop circle of this design occurred in the late 80s. It was the latest evolution in design coming after simple circles, ringed circles and circles with connecting bars (dumbbells). Even at this early stage, it was entirely plain to some that we were following a geometric unfolding of number in space.
The quintuplet design (like 5 dots on a dice), moved the crop circle design canon onto to a new level. It introduced the right angle (90º) into crop circle geometry for the first time and gave the crop circles an early foray into four-ness, and thence into the idea of the quintessence (or five-ness).
A Slight Digression, or Mothers & Daughters
A quick word on language would seem appropriate here. The late crop circle researcher Michael Glickman would always describe the quintuplets as being composed of a central ‘mother circle’ and four attending ‘daughter circles’. As this helps me to remember him (and is rather charming), I am going to continue to use Michael’s vernacular here.
In the quintuplet then, four daughter circles sit equidistant around a central mother circle at 90º each. If you were to draw straight lines between the centres of the four daughter circles, you would in fact be drawing a square. The square is not seen in the quintuplet pattern, but is implied, the division of the circle by four is necessary to place the daughter circles correctly.
Crop circle quintuplets come in many different sizes and the size of the mother circle in relation to the daughter circles is not a constant. However, the underlying nature of the geometry remains the same.
The Four-fold World
The quintuplet is of course not an invention of the crop circle phenomenon. It is an age old design often seen in the traditional arts.
The exquisite four-fold mosaic floor in Westminster Abbey is called ‘the Cosmati Pavement’. According to Richard Foster in his wonderful book, ‘Patterns of Thought’ The name was derived from ‘Cosmatus’ the family name of the Italian marblers responsible for this kind of work, they eventually became collectively known as the ‘Cosmati’.
However, by some happy coincidence, the name is also connected with the word Cosmos. This is important because it is the Cosmos which lies at the heart of meaning of the quintuplet. As its name suggests, this diagram of four around one, is said to represent the whole of the Cosmos, or Creation.
The quintuplet design itself is derived from the from the geometric marriage of the circle and the square. Those familiar with such symbolism will instantly recognise the Divine nature of the ineffable and unknowable circle and the Earthly nature of the square.
The circle itself (the first shape to appear swirled into our fields, hence ‘crop circles’), is the supreme symbol of wholeness and unity. It contains all things, incudes all things and holds all things in its ‘compass’-ionate embrace.
The square is the foundation stone, that which enables manifestation into the physical realm. She is mother substance, (Mater) or matter, upon which the spirit moved to give birth to creation. Hence the connection this pattern has with creation.
If geometry can be considered a language, this design would be saying something about the manifestation of spirit in matter - which is not a bad way to interpret the crop circle phenomenon itself.
It’s a very important philosophical concept at the heart of not only the crop circles, but of scared geometry itself.
Part Two: Synchronicity
Sun dogs and Ice halos
I had been contemplating this crop circle for a few days. As the opening statement of the season, the first circle to arrive always seems important. I was out walking with Steve one afternoon (May 5th), when he drew my attention to a sundog in the late afternoon sky - as we looked up we could see an ice halo around the sun with two sun dogs, one to the left and one to the right of the sun.
See my photo - we saw more with the naked eye, but in the photo you can just about see the halo and both sun-dogs.
Sun dogs and the more complex ice halos are spectacular atmospheric phenomena which occur when the upper atmosphere is very cold and ice crystals there scatter the light (sunlight, or moonlight) to create a halo around the sun (or moon). Sun dogs appear at 22.5º to the right and left of the sun and look like iridescent rainbow-coloured spots. If you happen to see the halo at the same time, this always appears at 22º - the sun dogs lie just outside the halo. If you are really lucky you may also see a second halo at 46º with a crescent moon at the top and further elaborate arcs (see photo).
I’ve seen ice halos and sun dogs on a number of occasions and they are a beautiful and arresting sight, something very special, always something to stop and wonder at. They inevitably draw one’s thoughts towards the cosmic.
However, it was the work of John Martineau in his ‘A Little Book of Coincidence’ that made this phenomena really pop for me. John’s work on the inherent geometry of the solar system is some of the most fascinating (and frankly astonishing) developments in our understanding of the role that classical geometry might have in the underlying structure of the universe. It is also an ode to synchronicity, that mercurial, yet ubiquitous human experience that seems to wink at us as it suggests there might be fundamental meaning within our hitherto mechanical reality.
As I looked into the sky that afternoon, it suddenly hit me that what I was seeing in the sky was a partial quintuplet and I literally had an ‘as above so below’ moment - a synchronicity, an eclipse of consciousness, call it what you will.
Over the next few days I began to draw this crop circle, paying attention to its proportions and properties.
Ruler and Compass
I always begin my drawings with trying to get as accurate reconstruction from a photo as I can. This is not a straight-forward task and each geometer has their own process. Photos can never replace an accurate field survey, which are now sadly, very rare. Lens distortion and other photographic artefacts can be tricky to navigate, so it is rare that any two renderings are exactly the same. It is a topic for much discussion amongst researchers.
Having got my drawing as right as I can, I then start the work at looking at the various, proportions, ratios and relationships in the pattern. For someone who draws by hand, like me, this process takes time. I work with tracing paper over the original drawing. I am sufficiently experienced now as to be able to recognise certain proportions pretty much on sight, but certainly not all! It’s so much quicker on a computer and I envy those that can do that, but for me geometry is a physical activity and I build my relationship and feel for the formations through my hands-on work. In the world of social media and the necessity of being first, I’m afraid I am very much the old mechanical tortoise to its quantum-lightning hare!
The first Synchronicity: The Light Spectrum
Once on the drawing board this formation soon gave up the first of its synchronicities; a sevenfold relationship between the central mother circle and the inner circumferences of the daughter circles. See my diagram. I thought to myself, for a formation that resembles an ice halo containing spots of ‘iridescent rainbow light’ this is a nice correspondence.
For those of you who have read anything on Sacred Geometry, you will know that numbers have qualities and as well as being quantities. These are not arbitrary qualities, or mere repetitions of tradition or superstition, but are based upon the behaviour of those numbers in their interactions with one another not only mathematically, but also geometrically. In this light, number and geometry are a language, imbued with meaning. This is a long held tradition going back to at least Ancient Egypt, its exact origin remains unknown. But this tradition (or Art), is something that has been practised and handed down from the earliest civilisations, through the medieval guilds and into modern day.
The word geometry means ‘measure of the Earth’. But it also carries in it a a link to the sky, the Sun, Moon, Pole Star, all are linked through navigation. Ancient cultures, like those that built the pyramids and Stonehenge, brought the sky to the ground and encoded the movements of the heavens in stone monuments using geometry. In many ways the crop circles continue this tradition and there have been more than a few astronomical events that have been illustrated by the crop circle phenomenon into our fields.
Seven is a curious number. It is a number apart. It is known as the Virgin as it does not interact well with other number geometries. Unlike the interactions of the even numbers of the decad (numbers 1-10), or even numbers like five and eight, seven stands alone. Likewise, it is not found often in the natural world, its connections are to the subtle, like the notes in the musical scale, or of course, the colours in the light spectrum. Seven therefore represents the eternal feminine, spirit and even revelation.
The link to the light spectrum certainly coincided with my experience of correspondence between this crop circle and the ice halo - but was that all there would be to it?
The Second Synchronicity: Twenty-two point five degrees
As I continued my work, I discovered that the diameter of the four daughter circles each sit within a 22.5º section of a circle. This means that our crop circle design was divided by sixteen, with one daughter circle sitting in every other section - four empty sections, four sections with a daughter circle sitting inside it.
But, hang-on a minute I thought, there was a number straight from the geometry of the sun dog/ice halo, 22.5º - the distance at which the sun dogs sit in an ice halo.
Here was a second synchronicity. This was starting to feel slightly uncanny. I decided to go back to John Martineau’s book to look again at the geometry of the ice halo.
See photo for his diagram based on the engraving by Flammarion (1885). Even a cursory glance will tell you that the whole thing looks like a quintuplet in the sky.
This is a favourite diagram of mine. It’s a great example of the diagramic art, but its beauty is a cover, because in parallel to the visual allure of the engraving is an astonishing coincidence. John Martineau shows us that when we see an ice halo in the sky what we are also looking at are the mean orbits of the only two planets between us and the sun; Mercury and Venus.
Now please, just take a minute to think about that and fully take it in, because - what the hell just happened?! Here is an entirely natural phenomenon, yet encoded within it is an image of the order of our inner solar system.
The implications of this are fascinating, in fact John Martineau goes in to say that this may suggest ‘an overall quantum holographic resonance’ in the solar system. That the ice halo phenomenon may be a refraction, not just of light through ice crystals in the atmosphere, but one that also reflects an overall wholeness of patterning to the solar system.
This sits so contrary to our accepted scientific understanding of reality, that it’s hard to take in. Is there in fact a geometric coherence to the universe? Is geometry a universal language? One that is fundamental to its existence? These are big questions.
The Third Synchronicity: The orbits of Earth and Mercury
As I continued my work on this formation, it was soon ready to reveal its third and final (?) synchronicity. If you take the perimeter circle of the formation as the orbit of the Earth, then the diameter of the daughter circles would correspondingly be the orbit of Mercury.
At this point, one just has to laugh. How can one even begin to explain such a set of events? At this point, synchronicity didn’t really begin to cover it.
I thought to myself, I wonder just how deep the rabbit hole of a quantum holographic resonance really goes?
Mercurius at work?
In a conversation about this formation with the crop circle researcher Peter van den Burg, he spoke of Mercury as the Greek 'messenger of the Gods' - yet another way to interpret the crop circle phenomenon. But it occurred to me later that this was perhaps a little bit more like the old trickster god Mercurius (same spirit - different incarnation). This whole experience had been for me an encounter with a mischievous spirit, perhaps not quite a trickster, but certainly one well versed in cosmic puns.
Part Three: A cosmic quantum holographic resonance?
The evolution of consciousness and a conscious universe
I am left with a deep sense of connectedness when it comes to this crop circle. It is difficult to describe the way in which this circle and the ice halo impacted my consciousness? We are not really great at conveying the deep effects of our synchronicities to others. They mostly tend to go over the heads of those we try to tell. Partly, this is social and cultural entrainment. We are told they are meaningless and unimportant, nothing more than a brain fart - seeing a connection where there is none - a flight of the fanciful imagination. More sober minds might call them nothing more than confirmation bias.
But I think this would be wrong. In denying these experiences we cut ourselves off from that quantum holographic resonance, that golden thread that connects all things. We shut our eyes and ears when the Cosmos is trying to show us something.
As small and simple as it may have been for some, the way this circle revealed itself to me by a ‘chance’ sighting of an ice halo is something worthy of contemplation. Not just for the geometric connections themselves, but for the nature and quality of the experience itself. We need to get better at communicating our synchronicities and recognising that it’s possible we are connecting with and having the nature of our relationship to the cosmos revealed to us - through our own consciousness.
One cannot escape speculation on the idea of a ‘cosmic’ quantum holographic resonance, that is embedded in all things everywhere. As John Martineau recently talked about in a presentation to the Sacred Geometry Academy, it might also be linked to Alfred Wallace’s ‘Anthropic Principle’, the idea that the universe was designed for intelligent life and that our observations of it make it so.
That such huge ideas can come from a tiny crop circle and a chance sighting of an entirely natural atmospheric phenomenon, at this point feels... barely indistinguishable from magic.
by Karen Alexander July 2022
I would like to thank Peter van den Burg for his help with this article.
You can see more of his great work on his Facebook page Geometry of the crop circles.
Crop Circle Explorers - Synchronicity Workshop - Saturday 10th September 2022 - 5 - 9pm UK time.
Geoff Fitzpatrick and I will be holding a half-day (4 hour) workshop on Crop Circles and Synchronicity later this summer. If you enjoyed this article and want to explore the deep connection between the phenomenon and synchronicity please join us! Click on the banner above to find out more and to book!
Patterns of Thought
by Richard Foster
Jonathan Cape Publishing, London. 1991
A Little Book of Coincidence
By John Martineau
Wooden Books. 2001
You can order this book from our online shop here.
John Martineau at the Sacred Geometry Academy
John Martineau recently spoke about the geometry of the ice halo phenomenon at the Sacred Geometry Solstice Summit.
You can get access to recording of this event (for free) here.
I cannot recommend highly enough the work of the Sacred Geometry Academy run by Scott Onstott and Geoff Fitzpatrick.
The Ever Present Origin
by Jean Gebser
Ohio University Press. 1984
An Analysis by Peter van den Burg
The first formation of this year communicates stability with a solid design in a theme that has been with us for (at least) four decades of crop circle history.
Although I believe the quintuplet is a cross in its essence, this one seems to be designed from a 3x3 square. This becomes clear as the satellites and ring are both determined by this template.
The blue circle is a Golden Mean from the outer perimeter of the ring and equals the area of standing crop inside the formation. It just spills over the edge of the four satellites but remains a rather beautiful harmonic.
The central circle has equal circumference of the central square in the template. If you want to reconstruct this you can make a squared circle any old way you prefer, but the satellite circles may be of help by extending the perimeter circle with a Golden Mean and draw a tangent circle from there. (This is not 100 % accurate, but remains in tune with the "feel" of the formation).
If we look for squared circles based on the ring we can find examples using either the central circle, or the satellites. I haven't yet found a way to synthesise the two (central circle and satellites) in one squared circle.
This lead to an interesting observation; Outward the squared circle is ambivalent, but inward synthesis is achieved.
Peter van den Burg 2022
You can see more of Peter's fascinating work on his Facebook page Geometry of the Crop Circles.