Decoding the Meaning of the Crop Circles


Ed and Kris Sherwood

by Celeste Allegrea Adams


This extraordinary photograph was taken by Ed Sherwood,
and shows light balls massing inside and above a crop circle near Silbury Hill


..The messages of the crop circle reflect the language of literal and metaphorical symbolism,
and offer a message for us all.


Millennium Research was founded in 1996 by Ed & Kris Sherwood with the purpose of creating a multi-media project, aimed at documenting and sharing their combined research of crop circles and related phenomena.

Ed Sherwood is an internationally recognized English UFO experiencer, crop-circle researcher, writer, and psychic. Ed has studied crop circles since 1984 and has personally experienced most aspects of the non-manmade phenomenon—including more than 100 anomalous aerial object sightings; numerous psycho-interactive and psycho-kinetic events; unusual acoustic, magnetic, and ion effects; plant anomalies, and more inside and near many crop-circle sites.

Kris Sherwood is an internationally known crop-circle researcher, writer, and co-founder of Millennium Research. Her research focuses on deciphering the symbols found in the genuine formations. Her articles document supportive evidence of Ed‘s original research findings that an Infinite Intelligence is interacting with our collective consciousness to co-create the genuine crop circles.


One reason that the Sherwoods believe that they have been able to gain insight into the meaning of crop circles is that they have explored this phenomena with an open mind. They have not held onto a belief system that would cause them to interpret things in a particular way. In their opinion, belief can sometimes arise out of fear. When you are not afraid, you are able to look at the unknown and proceed with an inquiring manner. When belief is based on assumption, people fall back on what they’ve been taught and what they’ve been told to believe—this inhibits their ability to investigate the unknown. In order to find the true meaning of a particular crop circle, it is necessary to let go of preconceived ideas.

Crop Circle Themes

The crop-circle designs are symbolic and literal metaphors that contain a wealth of encoded information. Sometimes the genuine crop circles are so deceptively simple-looking that you wonder if they really have something significant to say. The Sherwoods have discovered that even the simplest ones have multiple layers of meaning. The meaning can often tie to sacred symbols of more than one culture—sometimes in the same formation. "When you first look at the pattern, you might not immediately recognize it or you might recognize some aspect of it and go off to investigate it, which I think is what we are meant to do," Ed explains. "You may explore connections and associated symbols, and you may discover it actually has multiple layers of meaning, all cross-referencing each other."

Meteorological and dragon symbology at East Field

Ed has been researching crop circles since 1984, and in 1990 he decoded his first formation. The East Field formation, found in Wiltshire, England, completely changed his view of ‘who’ and ‘what’ creates crop circles. He felt that this particular design referred to dragons and leylines, water and weather, and an intelligence known as ‘The Nine.’ The famous pictogram of East Field may be made up of international meteorological symbols, and Ed suggests that it symbolizes a forecast of the prevailing weather conditions over East Field, before and after the crop-circle event.

This complex formation has ‘claw-like’ and ‘foot-like’ design features, and a double ‘dumb-bell’. Ed claims that clues to understanding the crop-circle phenomenon can be found in exploring eastern traditions in folklore and legends. Additional clues exist in the fields of physics and metaphysics. "When you explore eastern traditions having to do with dragons, you find that they rule the weather. So there you have meteorological symbols and dragon symbology overlaid and interlaced, cross-referencing in a very intelligent way."

Dragons were the ‘weather lords’ in that they were the masters of the wind and water. References to the Nine Dragons appear in many cultures—they were revered in China, and the first religion of Egypt was based on Nine Creation Gods. One of the dragons and gods was deified more than the others and represented the ‘Messenger of Messengers’—the emissary of creation. He is depicted in sculpture as the sphinx of Giza. Ed believes that formations like the East Field pictogram was created from the psychokinetic energy of the collective mind, in conjunction with natural forces and processes of the earth and cosmos.1

Indigenous people find crop circles that reflect their own symbols

Although crop circles have appeared mainly in Wiltshire, England, they have also appeared in countries around the world. Many Native American tribes have seen crop circles that reflect their own symbols and fulfillment of their prophecies. Colin Andrews spoke of a Hopi elder who said that a crop circle in the early 90’s was a symbol of Mother Earth crying because of the damage inflicted upon her.

In 1996, the Sherwoods were the only researchers to document the formation of a crop circle that appeared in Laguna Canyon, California. The soil around this crop circle was very soft and any human activity around the site would have left deep impressions of footprints or handprints. Kris notes that there were no marks of any kind that would show that anyone had been near this design. Ed even photographed it before they went into it to show the lack of prints.

The crop circle was done in a different medium than most other crop circles and occurring on a hillside covered by many species of plantsAn analysis of the bent plants, done by noted biophysicist Dr. Levengood, an expert in crop-circle plant analysis, confirmed the authenticity of formation. Ed notes that "Even though it formed in California, and even though there were numerous species of available plants, the pictogram was delineated by two English plant species, that were bent in a way characteristic of a genuine formation. This formation looked more like a petroglyph than a typical English crop-circle design."

Ed and Kris quickly realized that the design was a petroglyph symbol of the local Chumash and Tongva tribe, the Native Americans who were once indigenous to the Los Angeles Basin. The formation was comprised of three glyphs and one glyph resembled the sacred sun-staff of the Chumash Indians. There are accounts of a Tongva hero, by the name of ‘Chingichnish’, a spiritual leader said to have appeared hundreds of years ago to teach the people how to live in harmony with ‘Nocuma’ (The Great Spirit). He said that Nocuma would give three warnings to people who failed to respect the land. Beyond that, nature would take its course.

The Laguna Canyon pictogram was a three-glyph formation that appeared at a site where there had been considerable local protest against a toll-road construction, making a wide path through the last small piece of wilderness of Laguna Canyon. The Sherwoods do not believe this was simply a coincidence. They suggest that perhaps it was a warning that we need to change, or change will be brought upon us.2

Origins of Crop Circles

The messages of the crop circles challenge our intelligence.

The meaning of the messages comes from a level of consciousness that requires us to look and observe, and to interact with the crop circles if we want to decipher their meaning. Ed remarks that "We’re meant to think, we’re meant to investigate." Kris adds that the message is coming from our collective conscious. "It appears to us like dream symbols for things that have been suppressed in our subconscious, which we haven’t been dealing with. It’s symbolically trying to draw our attention to these issues, the way poltergeist activity will manifest." Ed adds, "It’s like a dream, which is conceived by the collective consciousness. The crop circle is made up of more information than your conscious mind, and that’s why you feel that it’s conceived by something greater than yourself."

Hoaxers, aliens and divine intelligence

The Sherwoods think that there are three sources for the origins of the crop circle. Some are manmade; some are made by extraterrestrial, (and they are generally simple circles, or sets of circles with perhaps one or two pictograms); and others are made by Divine Intelligence. Other researchers in the crop-circle community do not necessarily embrace this perspective and there are times when it is not well tolerated.

"I’ve looked at hundreds of formations and I’ve also had multiple close encounters with the phenomenon that I feel is creating most of the genuine formations. We’re not talking about extraterrestrial intelligence, we are referring to something beyond that, which is greater and more fundamental—the very source of where we come from and even where they come from." Ed continues, "I’ve noticed that in the last five or six years, there has been a slight change in other researchers’ views. Some are slowly coming round to the idea that maybe it’s more than just the ET explanation."

"In 1990 I started to share my views with crop-circle researchers. For years I encountered the opinion that the genuine formations were made by ETs. That’s putting it pretty simply. They either thought it was manmade or extraterrestrial. Others said that it was made by Gaia." Ed explains that he felt very alone when he first started saying the creator was God or the Infinite Intelligence of life. This is something he’s been saying publicly for years now, and it may be the case that more people are coming round to seeing it the same way.

"Some known researchers are beginning to change their views. Those who were very pro-extraterrestrial are now beginning to think the creators are the collective consciousness. It is a global poltergeist, but it’s from an infinite source and it’s expressing infinite intelligence. It’s not like an aggressive, angry poltergeist that’s coming from the collective consciousness of a single individual going through an emotional crisis. It’s a global collective consciousness that is coming into awareness, and is triggering a response from the infinite collective consciousness of all life."

Because some crop circles have been considered hoaxes, some researchers jump to the conclusion that they’re all hoaxes

This year, a number of hoaxers admitted that they had made certain crop circles that had previously been thought to be genuine. As a result, some researchers have become so disillusioned that they have swung like a pendulum, to the opposite extreme, and they are now saying that all crop circles are manmade. In spite of this, the Sherwoods maintain that some are made by people, some are made by ETs, and some are made by this superconscious force of creation. "The truth is often diverse and complex, and to find an answer to the origins you have to be like a true scientist—an inquirer, who doesn’t believe in one thing or another. You have to see what picture the information paints. Over time it becomes clearer."

The Sherwoods agree that Colin Andrews is probably fairly close in his estimate that perhaps 80 percent of the crop circles made in 1999 and 2000, in England, were manmade. Kris comments that "There are very active groups that are vehemently trying to discredit and fool researchers. They want people to accept their formations as genuine. Perhaps some of them are sponsored by people who have big interests in making sure the genuine phenomenon isn’t recognized."

The Sherwoods feel that the hoaxers believe in a genuine phenomenon, but they don’t know what it is and they’re not interested in finding out. Ed and Kris have also encountered a tremendous lack of discernment within the so-called ‘research community’ to the point where they feel there are very few people that can actually tell the genuine from manmade.

Determining authenticity of crop circles

Most people who look at crop circles are moved at a deep emotional level. Many view them as an art form and react to them as they would to paintings in an art gallery, that they find particularly moving. "Some people are inclined to call a crop circle genuine because they like it—not because it is really genuine." The Sherwoods consider many things when they try to determine the authenticity of a crop circle. In addition to looking at the geometry, the mathematics, and the symbolism in the design, they look at the physics and logistics of how the circle was created. They also look at the energy, both natural and or super-natural, that may have had a physical effect on the plants or the soil.

The way the crop is bent tells a great deal about authenticity

Studying the way the crops are bent is not necessarily a foolproof method for determining the authenticity, since it is easy to misinterpret the meaning of the bend in the crop. "One indicator of a genuine crop circle," says Ed, "is plants that have been bent at ninety-degrees and at the ground level. There are no cracks or breaks in the bend of the plant, and it almost looks like it’s been steamed into position. There’s no damage at all. You have to make sure that when you collect samples that you are also checking that this is something in addition to the natural bend." Many people confuse the natural bend with a stem bent by other means.

Dowsing crop circles to test their authenticity

It is important to ask the right questions when you use dowsing rods to explore the energy that is present in crop circles. "A proper dowser, using a rod, rods, or a pendulum, goes through an investigation to find out the authenticity of something. They ask questions where you get either a yes or no answer, and they go through a series of cross-referencing questions to find out if something is genuine or not. The problem is most people using dowsing rods don’t do that. They think that if the rods cross, if they go in one direction or another, they’re picking up leyline energy, but this is not necessarily the case. They could be picking up energy of themselves, their expectations, or of other people who are there or have been there." Since there are many things that can be detected through dowsing, it is important to be very discerning.


Earth lights and luminosities

Ancient people were in touch with a kind of light phenomena, referred to as ‘earth lights.’ This may be the reason that they built stone circles in particular places. The Sherwoods use the term luminosities to express a similar phenomena, and they say that there are basically two categories of luminosities. There are physical luminosities, which would give you a reading on a magnetometer. There are also non-physical luminosities, which wouldn’t necessarily get a reading, and you might only perceive them in an altered state of consciousness. In order to record them at all physically, you’d have to use equipment sensitive to other frequencies, like invisible light, infra red, or something that can handle infra-red frequencies. This appears to be the frequency in which the Sherwoods are photographing the non-physical luminosities.

Photographing luminosities

During the year 2000, Ed Sherwood organized more than 40 ‘psychic photography’ experiments in England at ancient sacred sites, authentic crop circle formations, and natural spaces. They were all located at points in the landscape where leylines cross. In these spaces, known as ‘nodal points’ and subtle energy ‘vortices’, Ed, and later Kris Sherwood, witnessed and recorded hundreds of luminosities, using 35mm, HI8 video and digital cameras. They were enormously successful in photographing luminosities that were seen by everyone present inside each crop circle formation.3

To see luminosities you have to be in a completely focused or altered state of consciousness

Ed finds that people who are distracted by thinking are unable to see the balls of light. "We were in a crop circle at night, it was dark and we had just finished a short meditation. I started to walk around, using a manual flash, flashing it towards what I sensed was the source of energy, which is what we commonly do. There was a retired physicist in the group who probably wasn’t able to see the first few luminosities. When I suggested that he focus his attention on a particular point in space, he soon began to see them."

One way to get into an altered state is through meditation. If you give your attention to the physical world around you, you might miss out on seeing them. "It’s like looking at a computerized picture where the designs are scrambled and pixilated. You have to look at them and stare at them in a certain way to see the three-dimensional image inside them." In other words, you have to look beyond the scrambled picture. Ed explains that we have to use similar techniques when looking at the physical world. "You have to disassociate your mind from that. I don’t mean go cross-eyed or look at the world bleary-eyed, but you have to give complete attention to the subject matter which is to try to see these luminosities."

Co-Creative Nature of Crop Circles

We psychokinetically co-create a positive or negative reality and this is very much reflected in the crop-circle phenomenon. Ed remarks that "The genuine crop circle phenomenon is teaching us to awaken to the fact that we are very powerful co-creative beings." When one person, or a group of people, or sometimes millions of people become aware or are witnessing something, they experience an awakening in their consciousness.

In Mexico City, in 1991, they had a total solar eclipse on July 11th and at the same time witnessed a fulfillment of the Mayan prophecy of the return of Quetzalcoatl, who was prophesied would return at the time of the sixth sun. According to their legends, this being came from the stars and taught them civilization and it was written that he would return on July 11th, 1991. As the solar eclipse was occurring, metallic objects that were not human-made, appeared over Mexico City and other cities around Mexico at the same time. There were hundreds of thousands of people who witnessed that as well as the eclipse.

As they witnessed this affirmation, (whether they were aware of the prophecy or not), formations started to appear in England. This was before this information was known in England, and before the information about the world’s largest UFO sighting started to appear in magazines and was talked about in crop-circle groups. "We started to get formations appearing in the wheat fields, clearly making a reference to extraterrestrial vehicles." Kris adds that "They even called them saucer-grams because they looked like cross-sections of flying discs. But the connection wasn’t made that this was going on in Mexico and the collective conscious focus was being reflected in these saucer-grams in Wiltshire. There is a real energetic connection between the area of Mexico’s pyramids and Wiltshire."

Ed remarks that a similar thing happened in 1994, when hundreds of thousands, maybe a few million people worldwide were paying attention to the Schumacher-Levy-9 comet that smashed into Jupiter. That was the first time, aided by our current technology that we were able to look at a comet hitting one of our local planets. "We wouldn’t have survived one of those 21 fragments that hit Jupiter, and here we were watching this and learning things from it. As we were witnessing that, even before we had the images of the impacts in our conscious mind, designs were appearing in wheat fields in Wiltshire and Hampshire. They clearly reflected what was happening on Jupiter. It showed that the Intelligence, the consciousness of the source of the genuine formations, was greater than what we knew consciously at the time."

Significant Crop Circle Developments in 2001

For Ed and Kris, the most significant crop-circle formation of 2001 appeared below the Gog Magog Hills near Cambridge, England. This elegant crop circle, quickly named the ‘Angel’ formation, was reported on July 25th. Ed held a long-planned synchronized group meditation, in part to see if the energy of focused consciousness would stimulate an interactive response from the primary Source of non-manmade crop circle creation, and perhaps psycho-kinetically co-create a new formation.

In the opening act of this meditation, held at a major ancient sacred site in Wiltshire, Ed made a spiritual ‘offering’ to the Infinite Mind and Intelligence of God. "By holding up a ‘medicine bag’ to the sun, with a 1994 crop-circle symbol on it, I stated the earth-healing purpose of the meditation while voicing additional intentions. Fortunately, this co-creative experiment was independently and privately witnessed and filmed by three US documentary filmmakers, during the event." Three days later, Ed and Kris discovered what seemed to have been a direct response to the experiment. It was a unique and amazing crop-circle formation that appeared in a wheat field near Cambridge. This was in keeping with many non-manmade crop-circle ‘signs’ that have appeared ‘psycho-interactively’ in the past. It incorporated the crop-circle symbol on the medicine bag, previously offered to the sun! Besides Ed, "no one, except perhaps the ‘Almighty’, and six trusted people knew about the co-creation experiment."4

The Sherwoods do not think that there are any other significant formations in England that were non-manmade in 2001. In their view, "The crop-circle season of 2001 was unprecedented in this respect. There were two multi-million dollar movies being made in England about crop circles this year. One is written and directed by Night Shyamalan, with ETs creating pictogram signs. Unfortunately, crop-circle hoax teams were therefore in force. Some of them were also clearly on the payroll, demonstrating their work. The same groups and others, in keeping with more than a decade of deceitful circle-making also continued to enter fields without the farmers permission, and thus could not openly admit their handiwork for fear of prosecution. We are aware of who they are and their particular ‘style’ or ‘profile’ of graphic work, way of signing their formations, and method of ‘targeting’ the views and beliefs of the more outspoken researchers, including ourselves, and were thus not too surprised by their formations. This would include two pictograms raved about on the internet as ‘genuine’ that appeared at Chilbolton, in Wiltshire, called ‘The Face’ and ‘The Code’ or ‘Arecibo Response’."5

There was also one other formation, that contained an impressive 409 circles in its design. The Sherwoods suspect that this formation was a major collaboration between several hoax teams, perhaps also for one or both of the movies.6

What’s to Come

Despite the extraordinary insights Ed and Kris Sherwood have offered in terms of understanding crop circles, they agree that there is still plenty of mystery remaining. Although they have been studying crop circles for more then ten years and have decoded the meaning of 150 formations, they feel that they cannot predict the new designs that will occur in the months and years to come. They can only suggest the themes that might be referenced, since there is so much going on in the world, which could be reflected in a crop circle at any time. The Sherwoods believe that there is an urgent need to become aware and recognize the messages of the crop circles at this critical time in our planet‘s evolution. They feel that the signs of a world in transition stand before us, like a ‘Course in Miracles’ from humanities higher self.


1. For a detailed study of this crop circle see Let Us Remember Dragons: A Meterological Connection in Crop Circles, by Ed Sherwood.

2. For an analysis of this site see Laguna Canyon Crop Circle Formation, by Ed & Kris Sherwood.

3. Further information about this photography technique and photos of luminosities can be viewed at A Millennium Research Psychic Photography Report 2000, Ed & Kris Sherwood. http://cropcircleconnector.com/Millennium/PsychicPhotographyReport2000.html

4. A complete report will be posted on the Sherwood’s website. The ‘Angel’ formation can be viewed at: http://cropcircleconnector.com/2001/GogMagogHills2/GogMagogHills2001b.html

5. Both of these formations can be view at:

6. An analysis of this formation will be posted on the Sherwood’s website. This formation can be viewed at: http://cropcircleconnector.com/2001/MilkHill2/milkhill2001a.html

Most quotes are from an interview conducted on May 1, 2001. Additional quotes are from October 16, 2001.

The following articles by the Sherwoods can be viewed at their homepage: http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/Millennium/millennium.html

A Millennium Research Psychic Photography Report 2000, Ed & Kris Sherwood

The Philosopher's Stone: A Stone Most Precious, by Kris Sherwood. Excerpted from a combined work-in-progress The Word Is Nine: Crop Circle Metaphors 1997, by Ed & Kris Sherwood.

Marine Lightwheels: Crop Circles of the Sea? by Kris Sherwood

The Scorpius Hour of 1994, by Kris Sherwood

Let Us Remember Dragons: A Meteorological Connection in Crop Circles, by Ed Sherwood

Oliver's Castle Lights Video, A few words from Kris Sherwood July 5, 1997

Laguna Canyon Crop Circle Formation, Reported March 9th 1996. Ed & Kris Sherwood

Two Views of the same Fractal, by Kris & Ed Sherwood. An examination of the construction, symbology, and numerological similarities between the ‘Double Helix’ and the ‘Julia Set’ formations of 1996

Three Views of the Same Fractal, By Ed & Kris Sherwood. This is an expansion on the previous article Two Views of the Same Fractal.

To Contact Ed and Kris Sherwood:

Email: millennium9@earthlink.net

Millennium Research
P.O.Box 2084,
Santa Monica, CA 90406


© This article appeared in the Spirit of Ma'at Magazine


Copyright © 2002

All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced, transmitted, or translated in any form whatsoever, including Internet usage, without written permission from the author, except in the case of brief quotations referenced in critical articles