|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The American by Henry James:
ray of observation made its way through a general meaningless smile.
"It is very kind of you to make such an offer," he said. "If I am
not mistaken, your occupations are such as to make your time precious.
You are in--a-- as we say, dans les affaires."
"In business, you mean? Oh no, I have thrown business
overboard for the present. I am 'loafing,' as WE say.
My time is quite my own."
"Ah, you are taking a holiday," rejoined M. de Bellegarde.
"'Loafing.' Yes, I have heard that expression."
"Mr. Newman is American," said Madame de Bellegarde.
"My brother is a great ethnologist," said Valentin.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Ball at Sceaux by Honore de Balzac:
letter-boxes, the books and furniture of this sanctum, where the
interests of the royal demesnes were debated over. When Joseph had
reduced this chaos to some sort of order, and brought to the front
such things as might be most pleasing to the eye, as if it were a shop
front, or such as by their color might give the effect of a kind of
official poetry, he stood for a minute in the midst of the labyrinth
of papers piled in some places even on the floor, admired his
handiwork, jerked his head, and went.
The anxious sinecure-holder did not share his retainer's favorable
opinion. Before seating himself in his deep chair, whose rounded back
screened him from draughts, he looked round him doubtfully, examined
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Lady Susan by Jane Austen:
Yours ever, &c.,
LADY SUSAN TO MRS. JOHNSON
I call on you, dear Alicia, for congratulations: I am my own self, gay
and triumphant! When I wrote to you the other day I was, in truth, in high
irritation, and with ample cause. Nay, I know not whether I ought to be
quite tranquil now, for I have had more trouble in restoring peace than I
ever intended to submit to--a spirit, too, resulting from a fancied sense
|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 Puck of Pook's Hill by Rudyard Kipling:
"'It is sure, large profit. Men'll dare any gallows for
that. I have been a trader myself," says he. "We must be
upsides with 'em for the honour of Bristol."
'Then he hatched a plot, sitting on the limewash
bucket. We gave out to ride o' Tuesday to London and
made a show of taking farewells of our friends - especially
of Master John Collins. But at Wadhurst Woods we
turned; rode home to the water-meadows; hid our horses
in a willow-tot at the foot of the glebe, and, come night,
stole a-tiptoe uphill to Barnabas' church again. A thick
mist, and a moon striking through.