|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Roads of Destiny by O. Henry:
flew like some expert musician's upon the keys of a piano. He dumped
the gold upon the counter with a crash, and the coins whined and sang
as they skimmed across the marble slab from the tips of his nimble
digits. The air was full of fractional currency when he came to the
halves and quarters. He counted the last nickle and dime. He had the
scales brought, and he weighed every sack of silver in the vault. He
questioned Dorsey concerning each of the cash memoranda--certain
checks, charge slips, etc., carried over from the previous day's work
--with unimpeachable courtesy, yet with something so mysteriously
momentous in his frigid manner, that the teller was reduced to pink
cheeks and a stammering tongue.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Common Sense by Thomas Paine:
Philadelphia, February 14, 1776
OF THE ORIGIN AND DESIGN OF GOVERNMENT IN GENERAL.
WITH CONCISE REMARKS ON THE ENGLISH CONSTITUTION
Some writers have so confounded society with government,
as to leave little or no distinction between them;
whereas they are not only different, but have different origins.
Society is produced by our wants, and government by our wickedness;
the former promotes our POSITIVELY by uniting our affections,
the latter NEGATIVELY by restraining our vices. The one
encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions.
The first a patron, the last a punisher.