|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Schoolmistress and Other Stories by Anton Chekhov:
and terror, full of hope and vague rapture, he went into his
bungalow, went up to his wife, and fell on his knees before her.
"Anna Filippovna!" he said with a sob, and he laid the baby on
the floor. "Hear me before you punish. . . . I have sinned! This
is my child. . . . You remember Agnia? Well, it was the devil
drove me to it. . . ."
And, almost unconscious with shame and terror, he jumped up
without waiting for an answer, and ran out into the open air as
though he had received a thrashing. . . .
"I'll stay here outside till she calls me," he thought. "I'll
give her time to recover, and to think it over. . . ."
The Schoolmistress and Other Stories
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Pathology of Lying, Etc. by William and Mary Healy:
practically impossible to find a case of this. The tendencies
soon carry the person over to the production of other
delinquencies, and if these do not come in the category of
punishable offenses, at least, through the trouble and suffering
caused others, they are to be regarded essentially as misconduct.
The reverse of the above question deserves a word or two of
attention; are there marked cases of delinquency which do not
show lying? Surveying the figures of Ferriani who enumerated
thousands of lies, belonging to his nine classes of
prevarications, which a group of 500 young offenders indulged in,
one would think that all delinquents are liars many times over.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Deserted Woman by Honore de Balzac:
will keep pure and sacred. Farewell; do my bidding with the
thought that your success will bring a gleam of pleasure into my
solitude, and only think of me as we think of absent friends."
Gaston de Nueil read the letter, and wrote the following lines:--
"MADAME,--If I could cease to love you, to take the chances of
becoming an ordinary man which you hold out to me, you must admit
that I should thoroughly deserve my fate. No, I shall not do as
you bid me; the oath of fidelity which I swear to you shall only
be absolved by death. Ah! take my life, unless indeed you do not
fear to carry a remorse all through your own----"
When the man returned from his errand, M. de Nueil asked him with whom
|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 Wrong Box by Stevenson & Osbourne:
we'll have to take off the door, or knock two of our windows into
one, or be fined by the Vestry or Custom House or something for
leaving our parcels on the pavement.'
The men by this time had successfully removed the box from the
van, had plumped it down on the pavement, and now stood leaning
against it, or gazing at the door of No. 16, in visible physical
distress and mental embarrassment. The windows of the whole
street had filled, as if by magic, with interested and
With as thoughtful and scientific an expression as he could
assume, Gideon measured the doorway with his cane, while Julia