|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Songs of Innocence and Experience by William Blake:
O what sweet company!
But to go to school in a summer morn, -
O it drives all joy away!
Under a cruel eye outworn,
The little ones spend the day
In sighing and dismay.
Ah then at times I drooping sit,
And spend many an anxious hour;
Nor in my book can I take delight,
Nor sit in learning's bower,
Worn through with the dreary shower.
Songs of Innocence and Experience
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Secret Places of the Heart by H. G. Wells:
about the south of England on our way to Falmouth. Where I
join a father in a few days' time, and I go on with him to
Paris. And if you and your friend are coming to the Old
"We are," said Sir Richmond.
"I see no great scandal in talking right on to bedtime. And
seeing Avebury to-morrow. Why not? Perhaps if we did as the
Germans do and gave our names now, it might mitigate
something of the extreme informality of our behaviour."
"My name is Hardy. I've been a munition manufacturer. I was
slightly wounded by a stray shell near Arras while I was
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Anabasis by Xenophon:
Xenophon the Athenian was born 431 B.C. He was a
pupil of Socrates. He marched with the Spartans,
and was exiled from Athens. Sparta gave him land
and property in Scillus, where he lived for many
years before having to move once more, to settle
in Corinth. He died in 354 B.C.
The Anabasis is his story of the march to Persia
to aid Cyrus, who enlisted Greek help to try and
take the throne from Artaxerxes, and the ensuing
return of the Greeks, in which Xenophon played a
leading role. This occurred between 401 B.C. and
|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 Apology by Plato:
having spoken after my manner, than speak in your manner and live. For
neither in war nor yet at law ought I or any man to use every way of
escaping death. Often in battle there can be no doubt that if a man will
throw away his arms, and fall on his knees before his pursuers, he may
escape death; and in other dangers there are other ways of escaping death,
if a man is willing to say and do anything. The difficulty, my friends, is
not to avoid death, but to avoid unrighteousness; for that runs faster than
death. I am old and move slowly, and the slower runner has overtaken me,
and my accusers are keen and quick, and the faster runner, who is
unrighteousness, has overtaken them. And now I depart hence condemned by
you to suffer the penalty of death,--they too go their ways condemned by