|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson:
With that, Sir Daniel, turning his back to Dick, and quite at the
farther end of the long table, began to write his letter, with his
mouth on one side, for this business of the Black Arrow stuck
sorely in his throat.
Meanwhile, young Shelton was going on heartily enough with his
breakfast, when he felt a touch upon his arm, and a very soft voice
whispering in his ear.
"Make not a sign, I do beseech you," said the voice, "but of your
charity tell me the straight way to Holywood. Beseech you, now,
good boy, comfort a poor soul in peril and extreme distress, and
set me so far forth upon the way to my repose."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Iron Puddler by James J. Davis:
The voice of hate was whispering that the "classes" would ride
down the children of the poor, and with this gloomy thought I
went to bed. My couch was a bed of coal slack, and I was
journeying to a mill town in a freight car.
As we rolled along, I saw in a vision train after train of
lodge men going to some happy city. They were miners and steel
workers, as well as clerks and teachers, and they were banded
together, not like Reds to overthrow the wage system, but to
teach themselves and their children how to make the wage system
shed its greatest blessings upon all. The city they were going to
was one they had built with their own hands. And in that city was
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Horse's Tale by Mark Twain:
go a sound. At last the surgeon was so full of admiration that he
said, 'Well, you ARE a brave little thing!' and she said, just as
ca'm and simple as if she was talking about the weather, 'There
isn't anybody braver but the Cid!' You see? it was the boy-twin
that the surgeon was a-dealing with.
"Who is the Cid?"
"I don't know, sir - at least only what she says. She's always
talking about him, and says he was the bravest hero Spain ever had,
or any other country. They have it up and down, the children do,
she standing up for the Cid, and they working George Washington for
all he is worth."
|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 The Smalcald Articles by Dr. Martin Luther:
in the pulpit when public absolution was announced to the
people: Prolong O God, my life, until I shall make
satisfaction for my sins and amend my life.
There was here [profound silence and] no mention of Christ nor
faith; but men hoped by their own works to overcome and blot
out sins before God. And with this intention we became priests
and monks, that we might array ourselves against sin.
As to contrition, this is the way it was done: Since no one
could remember all his sins (especially as committed through
an entire year), they inserted this provision, namely, that if
an unknown sin should be remembered later [if the remembrance