|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from On the Duty of Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau:
not like to think that I ever rely on the protection of the
State. But, if I deny the authority of the State when it
presents its tax bill, it will soon take and waste all my
property, and so harass me and my children without end.
This is hard. This makes it impossible for a man to live
honestly, and at the same time comfortably, in outward
respects. It will not be worth the while to accumulate
property; that would be sure to go again. You must hire or
squat somewhere, and raise but a small crop, and eat that
soon. You must live within yourself, and depend upon
yourself always tucked up and ready for a start, and not
On the Duty of Civil Disobedience
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Blue Flower by Henry van Dyke:
for an hour he could hardly reach Borsippa at the appointed
time. His companions would think he had given up the journey.
They would go without him. He would lose his quest.
But if he went on now, the man would surely die. If
Artaban stayed, life might be restored. His spirit throbbed
and fluttered with the urgency of the crisis. Should he risk
the great reward of his faith for the sake of a single deed of
charity? Should he turn aside, if only for a moment, from the
following of the star, to give a cup of cold water to a poor,
"God of truth and purity," he prayed, "direct me in the
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Chessmen of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs:
of them since; she was a fine girl, but she tried to slip a
dagger into me while I was kissing her. Ey, ey, those were the
days! But I kissed her. She's been dead over a thousand years
now, but she was never kissed again like that while she lived,
I'll swear, not since she's been dead, either. And then there was
that other --" but Turan, seeing a thousand or more years of
osculatory memoirs portending, interrupted.
"Tell me, ancient one," he said, "not of thy loves but of
thyself. Who are you? What do you here in the pits of O-Tar?"
"I might ask you the same, young man," replied the other. "Few
there are who visit the pits other than the dead, except my
The Chessmen of Mars
|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 $30,000 Bequest and Other Stories by Mark Twain:
and many other old-time reminiscences of stirring interest.
Few white men die lamented as was this aged negro. The funeral
was very largely attended."
During the next ten or eleven years the subject of this sketch
appeared at intervals at Fourth-of-July celebrations in various
parts of the country, and was exhibited upon the rostrum with
flattering success. But in the fall of 1855 he died again.
The California papers thus speak of the event:
ANOTHER OLD HERO GONE
Died, at Dutch Flat, on the 7th of March, George (once the confidential
body-servant of General Washington), at the great age of 95 years.