|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from An Open Letter on Translating by Dr. Martin Luther:
I shall say "gracious Mary" and "dear Mary", and they can say
"Mary full of grace". Anyone who knows German also knows what an
expressive word "dear"(liebe) is: dear Mary, dear God, the dear
emperor, the dear prince, the dear man, the dear child. I do not
know if one can say this word "liebe" in Latin or in other
languages with so much depth of emotion that it pierces the heart
and echoes throughout as it does in our tongue.
I think that St. Luke, as a master of the Hebrew and Greek
tongues, wanted to clarify and articulate the Greek word
"kecharitomene" that the angel used. And I think that the angel
Gabriel spoke with Mary just as he spoke with Daniel, when he
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Poems of Goethe, Bowring, Tr. by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe:
Amor's temple alone, where the Initiate may go.
Thou art indeed a world, oh Rome; and yet, were Love absent,
Then would the world be no world, then would e'en Rome be no Rome.
Do not repent, mine own love, that thou so soon didst surrender
Trust me, I deem thee not bold! reverence only I feel.
Manifold workings the darts of Amor possess; some but scratching,
Yet with insidious effect, poison the bosom for years.
Others mightily feather'd, with fresh and newly-born sharpness
Pierce to the innermost bone, kindle the blood into flame.
In the heroical times, when loved each god and each goddess,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane:
with grateful affection for the colonel and the
WHEN the woods again began to pour forth
the dark-hued masses of the enemy the youth felt
serene self-confidence. He smiled briefly when
he saw men dodge and duck at the long screech-
ings of shells that were thrown in giant handfuls
over them. He stood, erect and tranquil, watch-
ing the attack begin against a part of the line
that made a blue curve along the side of an adja-
The Red Badge of Courage
|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 Cousin Pons by Honore de Balzac:
Sieur Schmucke, costs being charged to . . . etc., etc.'
"I know the man, Mme. le Presidente. He will come to terms as soon as
he reads this little love-letter. He will take our terms. Are you
going to give the thousand crowns per annum?"
"Certainly. I only wish I were paying the first installment now."
"It will be done in three days. The summons will come down upon him
while he is stupefied with grief, for the poor soul regrets Pons and
is taking the death to heart."
"Can the application be withdrawn?" inquired the lady.
"Certainly, madame. You can withdraw it at any time."
"Very well, monsieur, let it be so . . . go on! Yes, the purchase of