|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Beast in the Jungle by Henry James:
looked into Marcher's own, at the cemetery, with an expression like
the cut of a blade. He felt it, that is, so deep down that he
winced at the steady thrust. The person who so mutely assaulted
him was a figure he had noticed, on reaching his own goal, absorbed
by a grave a short distance away, a grave apparently fresh, so that
the emotion of the visitor would probably match it for frankness.
This fact alone forbade further attention, though during the time
he stayed he remained vaguely conscious of his neighbour, a middle-
aged man apparently, in mourning, whose bowed back, among the
clustered monuments and mortuary yews, was constantly presented.
Marcher's theory that these were elements in contact with which he
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Second Home by Honore de Balzac:
defying the gentle precepts of that faith which Saint John epitomized
in the words, "Love one another"?
If there was a bonnet to be found in a milliner's shop that was
condemned to remain in the window, or to be packed off to the
colonies, Granville was certain to see it on his wife's head; if a
material of bad color or hideous design were to be found, she would
select it. These hapless bigots are heart-breaking in their notions of
dress. Want of taste is a defect inseparable from false pietism.
And so, in the home-life that needs the fullest sympathy, Granville
had no true companionship. He went out alone to parties and the
theatres. Nothing in his house appealed to him. A huge Crucifix that
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Moby Dick by Herman Melville:
exasperated whale, purposing to spring clean over the craft, is in
the enormous act of impaling himself upon the three mast-heads.
The opposite wall of this entry was hung all over with a heathenish
array of monstrous clubs and spears. Some were thickly set with
glittering teeth resembling ivory saws; others were tufted with knots
of human hair; and one was sickle-shaped, with a vast handle sweeping
round like the segment made in the new-mown grass by a long-armed
mower. You shuddered as you gazed, and wondered what monstrous
cannibal and savage could ever have gone a death-harvesting with such
a hacking, horrifying implement. Mixed with these were rusty old
whaling lances and harpoons all broken and deformed. Some were
|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 Plain Tales from the Hills by Rudyard Kipling:
an anna, very satisfied with himself and his good intentions, was
dropping all his English correspondents one by one, and beginning
more and more to look upon this land as his home. Some men fall
this way; and they are of no use afterwards. The climate where he
was stationed was good, and it really did not seem to him that
there was anything to go Home for.
He did what many planters have done before him--that is to say, he
made up his mind to marry a Hill girl and settle down. He was
seven and twenty then, with a long life before him, but no spirit
to go through with it. So he married Dunmaya by the forms of the
English Church, and some fellow-planters said he was a fool, and