|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Father Damien by Robert Louis Stevenson:
to defend. 'It is almost decent,' said he; 'the sisters will make
that all right when we get them here.' " And yet I gathered it was
already better since Damien was dead, and far better than when he
was there alone and had his own (not always excellent) way. I have
now come far enough to meet you on a common ground of fact; and I
tell you that, to a mind not prejudiced by jealousy, all the
reforms of the lazaretto, and even those which he most vigorously
opposed, are properly the work of Damien. They are the evidence of
his success; they are what his heroism provoked from the reluctant
and the careless. Many were before him in the field; Mr. Meyer,
for instance, of whose faithful work we hear too little: there have
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Arizona Nights by Stewart Edward White:
capable of nothing more in the way of emotion. Her eyes tight
closed, she inhaled in deep, trembling, long-drawn breaths, and
exhaled with the name of her Maker.
Brent Palmer, on the contrary, was by no means subdued. He had
expected to be shot in cold blood. Now he did not know what to
anticipate. His black, level brows drawn straight in defiance,
he threw his curses after Johnson's retreating figure.
The latter, however, paid no attention. He had his purposes.
Once at the top of the arroyo he took a careful survey of the
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton:
lamps were not lit in the drawing-room.
"Oh, no, I'm not tired, thank you. I thought Mrs. Melrose
expected friends at dinner!"
"Friends at dinner-to-night?" Mrs. Match heaved a despairing
sigh. Sometimes, the sigh seemed to say, her mistress put too
great a strain upon her. "Why, Mrs. Melrose and Mr. Fulmer were
engaged to dine in Paris. They left an hour ago. Mrs. Melrose
told me she'd told you," the house-keeper wailed.
Susy kept her little fixed smile. "I must have misunderstood.
In that case ... well, yes, if it's no trouble, I believe I will
have my tray upstairs. "
|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 Louis Lambert by Honore de Balzac:
understand the customs and language there, but his mere presence
paralyzes the voice and hearts of those who dwell therein.
Dante, in his /Divine Comedy/, had perhaps some slight intuition of
those spheres which begin in the world of torment, and rise, circle on
circle, to the highest heaven. Thus Swedenborg's doctrine is the
product of a lucid spirit noting down the innumerable signs by which
the angels manifest their presence among men.
This doctrine, which I have endeavored to sum up in a more or less
consistent form, was set before me by Lambert with all the fascination
of mysticism, swathed in the wrappings of the phraseology affected by
mystical writers: an obscure language full of abstractions, and taking