|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Plain Tales from the Hills by Rudyard Kipling:
thoroughly grasped the story, and knew who Strickland was, he began
to puff and blow in the saddle, and nearly rolled off with
laughing. He said Strickland deserved a V. C., if it were only for
putting on a sais's blanket. Then he called himself names, and
vowed that he deserved a thrashing, but he was too old to take it
from Strickland. Then he complimented Miss Youghal on her lover.
The scandal of the business never struck him; for he was a nice old
man, with a weakness for flirtations. Then he laughed again, and
said that old Youghal was a fool. Strickland let go of the cob's
head, and suggested that the General had better help them, if that
was his opinion. Strickland knew Youghal's weakness for men with
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Call of the Wild by Jack London:
stormed and raged at them through the bars. They only laughed and
poked sticks at him, which he promptly assailed with his teeth
till he realized that that was what they wanted. Whereupon he lay
down sullenly and allowed the crate to be lifted into a wagon.
Then he, and the crate in which he was imprisoned, began a passage
through many hands. Clerks in the express office took charge of
him; he was carted about in another wagon; a truck carried him,
with an assortment of boxes and parcels, upon a ferry steamer; he
was trucked off the steamer into a great railway depot, and
finally he was deposited in an express car.
For two days and nights this express car was dragged along at the
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Almayer's Folly by Joseph Conrad:
that the white men believed. He put that question to himself
earnestly as he left, one of the last, when the proceedings came
to a close. He was not certain. Still, if they believed only
for a night, he would put Dain beyond their reach and feel safe
himself. He walked away fast, looking from time to time over his
shoulder in the fear of being followed, but he saw and heard
"Ten o'clock," said the lieutenant, looking at his watch and
yawning. "I shall hear some of the captain's complimentary
remarks when we get back. Miserable business, this."
"Do you think all this is true?" asked the younger man.
|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 Historical Lecturers and Essays by Charles Kingsley:
courtesy, and all which makes man or woman lovely in the eyes of
mortals or of God.
Yes, the "Cyropaedia" is a noble book, about a noble personage. But
I cannot forget that there are nobler words by far concerning that
same noble personage, in the magnificent series of Hebrew Lyrics,
which begins "Comfort ye, comfort ye, my people, saith the Lord"--in
which the inspired poet, watching the rise of Cyrus and his
Puritans, and the fall of Babylon, and the idolatries of the East,
and the coming deliverance of his own countrymen, speaks of the
Persian hero in words so grand that they have been often enough
applied, and with all fitness, to one greater than Cyrus, and than