|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Young Forester by Zane Grey:
For the life of me I could not keep a little scorn out of my question.
Buell slowly put the bills in his pocket while his eyes searched; I could
not control my rising temper.
"You mean you want to fix me?"
He made no answer, and his face stiffened.
"You mean you want to buy my silence, shut my mouth about this lumber
He drew in his breath audibly, yet still he did not speak. Either he was
dull of comprehension or else he was astonished beyond words. I knew I was
mad to goad him like that, but I could not help it. I grew hot with anger,
and the more clearly I realized that he had believed he could "fix" me with
The Young Forester
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from One Basket by Edna Ferber:
destruction to millions. The war that brought a fortune to Jo
Hertz, and transformed him, overnight, from a baggy-kneed old
bachelor whose business was a failure to a prosperous
manufacturer whose only trouble was the shortage in hides for the
making of his product. Leather! The armies of Europe called for
it. Harnesses! More harnesses! Straps! Millions of straps.
The musty old harness business over on Lake Street was magically
changed from a dust-covered, dead-alive concern to an orderly
hive that hummed and glittered with success. Orders poured in.
Jo Hertz had inside information on the war. He knew about troops
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen:
stroll thither, and examine the matter nearer." And the rich people drove out,
and the poor walked, but the way seemed strangely long to them; and when they
came to a clump of willows which grew on the skirts of the forest, they sat
down, and looked up at the long branches, and fancied they were now in the
depth of the green wood. The confectioner of the town came out, and set up his
booth there; and soon after came another confectioner, who hung a bell over
his stand, as a sign or ornament, but it had no clapper, and it was tarred
over to preserve it from the rain. When all the people returned home, they
said it had been very romantic, and that it was quite a different sort of
thing to a pic-nic or tea-party. There were three persons who asserted they
had penetrated to the end of the forest, and that they had always heard the
|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 Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin by Benjamin Franklin:
even to our avarice and ambition. I propos'd to myself, for the sake
of clearness, to use rather more names, with fewer ideas annex'd
to each, than a few names with more ideas; and I included under
thirteen names of virtues all that at that time occurr'd to me
as necessary or desirable, and annexed to each a short precept,
which fully express'd the extent I gave to its meaning.
These names of virtues, with their precepts, were:
1. TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.
2. SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself;
avoid trifling conversation.
3. ORDER. Let all your things have their places; let each part
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin