Moving in the Right Circles at Glastonbury

The Forbidden Archaeologist •

On Friday morning, July 23, 2004, I arrived at Gatwick airport, south of metropolitan London, on my way to speak on my new book Human Devolution at the Glastonbury Symposium, which is mainly about crop circles. The very term crop circles gives new meaning to the expression “it’s not my field,” because it really is a field in which I have not made very much of a mark.

I made my way rapidly through immigration and customs, and then found my way to the streets at the arrival level. My driver was there to meet me and take me to Glastonbury, which is located in the southwest part of England. We headed out of the airport to the M25, the dreaded circle route around London, The traffic was not so bad, and the weather was good as we headed west on the M1. After a while, we came onto the Salisbury Plain, and up ahead, on the right, stark against the bright blue summer sky, rose the mystical megalithic forms of Stonehenge. Some of the huge stones were rolled on logs or dragged on planks, from as far away as Wales. Or perhaps Stone-Age wizards floated them to their present positions.

Some time later, the Glastonbury Tor, a lone stone tower on the top of a steep conical hill, appeared on the skyline. Glastonbury is a potent place, deeply soaked in the lore of the Grail and Arthurian Avalon. We entered the town and found Magdalene Street, with its associations with Mary Magdalene. Arches of the ruined cathedral at Glastonbury According to Essene and other esoteric doctrines, she was the wife of Jesus, who, say many here, himself spent his lost years in Glastonbury studying Druidic mysteries. My lodgings were at No. 3 Magdalene, at the unimaginatively named No. 3 Hotel, which was not a hotel but a luxury bed and breakfast mansion. The lady of the house showed me up to my lodgings on the second floor Walnut Room. My cheerfully gracious hostess told me there were ghosts in the house, but I said I was a bit tired and would have to meet them later on.

After that, I crashed into dreamless sleep. In the early evening, I got up and wandered up Magdalene Street toward the town center. I strolled by the Abbey ruins, reputed to be the site of the most ancient Christian church in England. King Henry VIII destroyed the Abbey in the sixteenth century. In 1908, a trust appointed architect Frederick Bligh Bond to conduct excavations. He located many lost structures using psychic methods and by automatic writing established communication with long dead monks. When his methods became known, the trust fired him. A little further up Magdalene, I found the quaint Town Hall, the venue for the conference. I went in and introduced myself to one of the three organizers, Sheila Martin, and peeked into the lecture hall, which was packed full. Then I went out to get something to eat. There was a fine Italian restaurant across the street from the Town Hall, but my international reputation had not yet reached the maître d’, and he turned down my request for a table for one, saying that the establishment gave tables for one only after ten o’clock. Thus humbled, I found my way to a fish and chips joint, and had an order of chips (fish is off limits to me) with an apple juice to drink.

On Saturday morning, I had an ample English breakfast in the dining room of No. 3. Of course, being a vegetarian I had to confine myself to the fresh fruits and juices, whole-wheat toast with jam and butter, fresh fruits with yogurt, some local cheeses, and decaf coffee. Later in the day, I ran into Suzanne Taylor, who is producing a documentary film on crop circles. She and her crew interviewed me in front of the Town Hall. My contribution was to comment on the process of knowledge filtration that operates in the world of science, something I had documented in my book Forbidden Archeology. The knowledge filter ensures that phenomena that radically contradict the current scientific consensus do not enter the mainstream discourse—except as examples of pseudoscientific foolishness. I enjoyed the shoot, and we parted agreeing to meet sometime in LA, where both of us are based.

Sunday morning, I got up and performed my usual ablutions and meditations before heading down to breakfast. Sunday was the last day of the symposium, and I was to be the last speaker. I spent most of the morning and early afternoon putting the finishing touches on the presentation. In the late afternoon, I went over to the Town Hall to hear the talk of Robert Bauval, whose work I very much like. I ran into him and his wife Michele at the Town Hall café. We reminisced about the last time we had met and then went into the lecture hall.

I very much liked Robert’s talk, taken from his latest book, Talisman: Sacred Cities and Secret Faith, coauthored with Graham Hancock. The talk focused on the similarities between the city design of Paris in France and Luxor in Egypt. Certain monuments and boulevards in Paris, namely the Louvre, the Champs-Elysees, and the old Place de l’Etoile, have celestial alignments related to the goddess Isis, mirroring a similar arrangement of temples and boulevards in Luxor. Bauval explored the historical transmission of the Isis concepts from ancient Egypt to the Masonic secret societies of France.

Afterwards, I met with Karen Doug, another one of the three symposium organizers, to take care of the technical preparations for my presentation. Then it was showtime. After a nice introduction by Andy Thomas, the third of the trio of symposium organizers, I began by relating the topic of my book Human Devolution: A Vedic Alternative to Darwin’s Theory to the crop circle phenomenon. In Human Devolution, I present a view of the cosmos in which crop circles make sense. The message of Human Devolution is that we do not evolve up from matter, as most scientists now believe, but that we devolve or come down from pure consciousness or spirit. We exist in a multilevel cosmos with beings adapted to the conditions at each level. Originally, we are spirit beings, who exist in the realm of pure consciousness. If we depart from that level, having become attracted to the lower energies of mind and matter, we descend to those levels. We now find ourselves on the level of gross matter. But beings from higher levels may be attempting to communicate with us, through, for example, crop circles.

Even mainstream science accepts that there are very probably intelligent beings in other parts of our universe trying to communicate with us, hence the existence of government funded projects in SETI—the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. But today’s mainstream scientists are not imaginative enough in their thoughts about the means of communication such extraterrestrial intelligences might use to contact us and what means of communication we might use to contact them. However, in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, imaginative scientists made provocative proposals, such as using geometrical forms inscribed in crops to communicate with extraterrestrials. In his book SETI Pioneers, David W. Swift says (1990, p. 6): “Mathematician Karl Friedrich Gauss suggested planting broad bands of forests in Siberia in the shape of a right-angled triangle. Inside the triangle wheat would be planted to provide a uniform color. An elaboration of this basic scheme would have included squares on each side of the triangle, to form the classic illustration of the Pythagorean theorem.” So if human scientists have thought that geometrical forms inscribed in crops might be a good way to communicate with extraterrestrial intelligences, perhaps some of the extraterrestrials have concluded that this would also be a good way to communicate with us.

After my talk, as I was making my way out of the hall to go sign some books, Dr. John Mack come up and introduced himself. Mack is the Harvard University psychiatrist who got into trouble with his faculty colleagues when he became involved in researching reports of alien abductees, and concluded they were not mentally ill or hallucinating. His colleagues convened an academic court to remove him from the faculty. Fortunately, they failed, but provided a good example of the knowledge filtration process in action. It had been a long time since we last spoke together at a conference—a few years ago, at an event organized by Erik von Daniken in Bern, Switzerland. I told John I had cited his work in Human Devolution, in a chapter that documents evidence for beings existing at higher levels of reality in our cosmos.

After we parted, I made my way to the book room where Marcus Allen of the UK edition of Nexus was selling copies of Human Devolution. I sat down and signed some books, making some nice contacts with purchasers, some of whom invited me out for dinner at a nearby Indian restaurant. I then spent my last night in Glastonbury at the No. 3 Hotel, and at dawn my driver was there to take me back to Gatwick.


Michael A. Cremo is author, with Richard Thompson, of the underground classic Forbidden Archaeology: The Hidden History of the Human Race. His latest book is Human Devolution: A Vedic Alternative to Darwin’s Theory (see

Michael A. Cremo