|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Hated Son by Honore de Balzac:
we may count by the innumerable sensations, thoughts, dreams, glances,
opening flowers, realized hopes, unceasing joys, speeches interrupted,
renewed, abandoned, frolic laughter, bare feet dabbling in the sea,
hunts, childlike, for shells, kisses, surprises, clasping hands,--call
it a lifetime; death will justify the word. There are existences that
are ever gloomy, lived under ashen skies; but suppose a glorious day,
when the sun of heaven glows in the azure air,--such was the May of
their love, during which Etienne had suspended all his griefs,--griefs
which had passed into the heart of Gabrielle, who, in turn, had
fastened all her joys to come on those of her lord. Etienne had had
but one sorrow in his life,--the death of his mother; he was to have
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Water-Babies by Charles Kingsley:
"Little boys must take the trouble to find out things for
themselves, or they will never grow to be men; so that you must ask
all the beasts in the sea and the birds in the air, and if you have
been good to them, some of them will tell you the way to Shiny
"Well," said Tom, "it will be a long journey, so I had better start
at once. Good-bye, Miss Ellie; you know I am getting a big boy,
and I must go out and see the world."
"I know you must," said Ellie; "but you will not forget me, Tom. I
shall wait here till you come."
And she shook hands with him, and bade him good-bye. Tom longed
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Facino Cane by Honore de Balzac:
thought of nothing else; the wedding party and the music ceased to
exist, my curiosity was roused to the highest pitch, for my soul
passed into the body of the clarionet player.
The fiddle and the flageolet were neither of them interesting; their
faces were of the ordinary type among the blind--earnest, attentive,
and grave. Not so the clarionet player; any artist or philosopher must
have come to a stop at the sight of him.
Picture to yourself a plaster mask of Dante in the red lamplight, with
a forest of silver-white hair above the brows. Blindness intensified
the expression of bitterness and sorrow in that grand face of his; the
dead eyes were lighted up, as it were, by a thought within that broke
|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 Main Street by Sinclair Lewis:
struggle by disclosing her lack of bridge. Roused to nervous
desire to regain her position she turned on Dr. Terry Gould,
the young and pool-playing competitor of her husband. Her
eyes coquetted with him while she gushed:
"I'll learn bridge. But what I really love most is the
outdoors. Can't we all get up a boating party, and fish, or
whatever you do, and have a picnic supper afterwards?"
"Now you're talking!" Dr. Gould affirmed. He looked
rather too obviously at the cream-smooth slope of her shoulder.
"Like fishing?. Fishing is my middle name. I'll teach you
bridge. Like cards at all?"