|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Faraday as a Discoverer by John Tyndall:
in absolute contact, but surrounded by interatomic space. 'Space,'
he observes, 'must be taken as the only continuous part of a body so
constituted. Space will permeate all masses of matter in every
direction like a net, except that in place of meshes it will form
cells, isolating each atom from its neighbours, itself only being
Let us follow out this notion; consider, he argues, the case of a
non-conductor of electricity, such for example as shell-lac, with
its molecules, and intermolecular spaces running through the mass.
In its case space must be an insulator; for if it were a conductor
it would resemble 'a fine metallic web,' penetrating the lac in
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Alexandria and her Schools by Charles Kingsley:
fiercer lust of aggrandisement, to enact the part of a new Macedon,
against a new Greece, divided, not united, by the treacherous bond of
that balance of power, which is but war under the guise of peace.
Europe needs a holier and more spiritual, and therefore a stronger
union, than can be given by armed neutralities, and the so-called cause
of order. She needs such a bond as in the Elizabethan age united the
free states of Europe against the Anarch of Spain, and delivered the
Western nations from a rising world-tyranny, which promised to be even
more hideous than the elder one of Rome. If, as then, England shall
proclaim herself the champion of freedom by acts, and not by words and
paper, she may, as she did then, defy the rulers of the darkness of this
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from My Bondage and My Freedom by Frederick Douglass:
original with me--but mine because I hold it to be true.
I understand this policy to comprehend five cardinal objects.
They are these: 1st. The complete suppression of all anti-slavery
discussion. 2d. The expatriation of the entire free people of
color from the United States. 3d. The unending perpetuation of
slavery in this republic. 4th. The nationalization of slavery to
the extent of making slavery respected in every state of the
Union. 5th. The extension of slavery over Mexico and the entire
South American states.
Sir, these objects are forcibly presented to us in the stern
logic of passing events; in the facts which are and have been
My Bondage and My Freedom
|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 Chita: A Memory of Last Island by Lafcadio Hearn:
above which rises the angular ruddy mass of the old brick fort,
whose ditches swarm with crabs, and whose sluiceways are half
choked by obsolete cannon-shot, now thickly covered with
incrustation of oyster shells.... Around all the gray circling of
a shark-haunted sea...
Sometimes of autumn evenings there, when the hollow of heaven
flames like the interior of a chalice, and waves and clouds are
flying in one wild rout of broken gold,--you may see the tawny
grasses all covered with something like husks,--wheat-colored
husks,--large, flat, and disposed evenly along the lee-side of
each swaying stalk, so as to present only their edges to the