|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Footnote to History by Robert Louis Stevenson:
assumption in his creature. I repeat the words king-maker and
creature; it is so that Mataafa himself conceives of their
relation: surely not without justice; for, had he not contended
and prevailed, and been helped by the folly of consuls and the fury
of the storm, Laupepa must have died in exile.
Foreigners in these islands know little of the course of native
intrigue. Partly the Samoans cannot explain, partly they will not
tell. Ask how much a master can follow of the puerile politics in
any school; so much and no more we may understand of the events
which surround and menace us with their results. The missions may
perhaps have been to blame. Missionaries are perhaps apt to meddle
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Walking by Henry David Thoreau:
surface of God's earth shall be construed to mean trespassing on
some gentleman's grounds. To enjoy a thing exclusively is
commonly to exclude yourself from the true enjoyment of it. Let
us improve our opportunities, then, before the evil days come.
What is it that makes it so hard sometimes to determine whither
we will walk? I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in
Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us
aright. It is not indifferent to us which way we walk. There is a
right way; but we are very liable from heedlessness and stupidity
to take the wrong one. We would fain take that walk, never yet
taken by us through this actual world, which is perfectly
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Maid Marian by Thomas Love Peacock:
and thereby hangs a tale that may be either said or sung;
for in truth I am minstrel here as well as chaplain;
I pray for good success to our just and necessary warfare,
and sing thanks-giving odes when our foresters bring in booty:
Bold Robin has robed him in ghostly attire,
And forth he is gone like a holy friar,
Singing, hey down, ho down, down, derry down:
And of two grey friars he soon was aware,
Regaling themselves with dainty fare,
All on the fallen leaves so brown.
"Good morrow, good brothers," said bold Robin
|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 Prince Otto by Robert Louis Stevenson:
lovely change of tone. 'Otto, I beseech you let me save it. Take
this dross from your poor friend who loves you!'
'Madam, madam,' babbled Otto, in the extreme of misery, 'I cannot -
I must go.'
And he half rose; but she was on the ground before him in an
instant, clasping his knees. 'No,' she gasped, 'you shall not go.
Do you despise me so entirely? It is dross; I hate it; I should
squander it at play and be no richer; it is an investment, it is to
save me from ruin. Otto,' she cried, as he again feebly tried to
put her from him, 'if you leave me alone in this disgrace, I will
die here!' He groaned aloud. 'O,' she said, 'think what I suffer!