|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Psychology of Revolution by Gustave le Bon:
the spirit of equality leads to the despotism of a single person,
as the despotism of a single person leads to conquest.''
The ideal of Montesquieu was the English constitutional
government, which prevented the monarchy from degenerating into
despotism. Otherwise the influence of this philosopher at the
moment of the Revolution was very slight.
As for the Encyclopaedists, to whom such a considerable
role is attributed, they hardly dealt with politics,
excepting d'Holbach, a liberal monarchist like Voltaire and
Diderot. They wrote chiefly in defence of individual liberty,
opposing the encroachments of the Church, at that time extremely
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Alexander's Bridge by Willa Cather:
thought he heard a sound at his door. He
started and listened, holding the burning
match in his hand; again he heard the same
sound, like a firm, light tap. He rose and
crossed the room quickly. When he threw
open the door he recognized the figure that
shrank back into the bare, dimly lit hallway.
He stood for a moment in awkward constraint,
his pipe in his hand.
"Come in," he said to Hilda at last, and
closed the door behind her. He pointed to a