|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Soul of Man by Oscar Wilde:
is mightier than the paving-stone, and can be made as offensive as
the brickbat. They at once sought for the journalist, found him,
developed him, and made him their industrious and well-paid
servant. It is greatly to be regretted, for both their sakes.
Behind the barricade there may be much that is noble and heroic.
But what is there behind the leading-article but prejudice,
stupidity, cant, and twaddle? And when these four are joined
together they make a terrible force, and constitute the new
In old days men had the rack. Now they have the press. That is an
improvement certainly. But still it is very bad, and wrong, and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen:
to express her wish of being permitted to see it,
as well as all the rest of that side of the house;
and Eleanor promised to attend her there, whenever they
should have a convenient hour. Catherine understood her:
the general must be watched from home, before that room
could be entered. "It remains as it was, I suppose?"
said she, in a tone of feeling.
"And how long ago may it be that your mother died?"
"She has been dead these nine years." And nine years,
Catherine knew, was a trifle of time, compared with what
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Aspern Papers by Henry James:
were ashamed of making a speech so little in the real tone of Venice.
As if a woman needed an excuse for having loved the divine poet!
He had been not only one of the most brilliant minds of his day
(and in those years, when the century was young, there were,
as everyone knows, many), but one of the most genial men and one
of the handsomest.
The niece, according to Mrs. Prest, was not so old, and she
risked the conjecture that she was only a grandniece.
This was possible; I had nothing but my share in the very limited
knowledge of my English fellow worshipper John Cumnor, who had
never seen the couple. The world, as I say, had recognized
|The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Essays & Lectures by Oscar Wilde:
sailing to the New World, while a fragment of Pythagorean astronomy
set Copernicus thinking on that train of reasoning which has
revolutionised the whole position of our planet in the universe.
Then it was seen that the only meaning of progress is a return to
Greek modes of thought. The monkish hymns which obscured the pages
of Greek manuscripts were blotted out, the splendours of a new
method were unfolded to the world, and out of the melancholy sea of
mediaevalism rose the free spirit of man in all that splendour of
glad adolescence, when the bodily powers seem quickened by a new
vitality, when the eye sees more clearly than its wont and the mind
apprehends what was beforetime hidden from it. To herald the