|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Parmenides by Plato:
passions of religious parties have been roused to the utmost about words of
which they could have given no explanation, and which had really no
distinct meaning. One sort of them, faith, grace, justification, have been
the symbols of one class of disputes; as the words substance, nature,
person, of another, revelation, inspiration, and the like, of a third. All
of them have been the subject of endless reasonings and inferences; but a
spell has hung over the minds of theologians or philosophers which has
prevented them from examining the words themselves. Either the effort to
rise above and beyond their own first ideas was too great for them, or
there might, perhaps, have seemed to be an irreverence in doing so. About
the Divine Being Himself, in whom all true theological ideas live and move,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Voyage of the Beagle by Charles Darwin:
amount of moisture. Twelve hours afterwards the ground
appeared as dry as ever; yet after an interval of ten days,
all the hills were faintly tinged with green patches; the
grass being sparingly scattered in hair-like fibres a full
inch in length. Before this shower every part of the surface
was bare as on a high road.
In the evening, Captain Fitz Roy and myself were dining
with Mr. Edwards, an English resident well known for his
hospitality by all who have visited Coquimbo, when a sharp
earthquake happened. I heard the forecoming rumble, but
from the screams of the ladies, the running of the servants,
The Voyage of the Beagle
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Just Folks by Edgar A. Guest:
A pair of rubber boots.
The dead friends live and always will;
Their presence hovers round us still.
It seems to me they come to share
Each joy or sorrow that we bear.
Among the living I can feel
The sweet departed spirits steal,
And whether it be weal or woe,
I walk with those I used to know.
I can recall them to my side
|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 Flame and Shadow by Sara Teasdale:
The Wind in the Hemlock
Flame and Shadow