|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Paz by Honore de Balzac:
replied Clementine. "Well, if I accept it as a great sacrifice there
can be no ill-will between us."
Paz left the room, fearing he might commit some great folly, and
feeling that wild ideas were getting the better of him. He went to
walk in the open air, lightly dressed in spite of the cold, but
without being able to cool the fire in his cheeks or on his brow.
"I thought you had a noble soul,"--the words still rang in his ears.
"A year ago," he said to himself, "she thought me a hero who could
fight the Russians single-handed!"
He thought of leaving the hotel Laginski, and taking service with the
spahis and getting killed in Africa, but the same great fear checked
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from What is Man? by Mark Twain:
accident, the accident of birth, and he stands always before the
grieved eye of poverty and obscurity a monumental representative
of luck. And then--supremest value of all-his is the only high
fortune on the earth which is secure. The commercial millionaire
may become a beggar; the illustrious statesman can make a vital
mistake and be dropped and forgotten; the illustrious general can
lose a decisive battle and with it the consideration of men; but
once a prince always a prince--that is to say, an imitation god,
and neither hard fortune nor an infamous character nor an addled
brain nor the speech of an ass can undeify him. By common
consent of all the nations and all the ages the most valuable
What is Man?