|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Philosophy 4 by Owen Wister:
Something transcending the Objective becomes possible. In the Cogito
the relation of subject and object is implied as the primary condition
of all knowledge. Now, Plato never--"
"Skip Plato," interrupted one of the boys. "You gave us his points
"Yep," assented the other, rattling through the back pages of his notes.
"Got Plato down cold somewhere,--oh, here. He never caught on to the
subjective, any more than the other Greek bucks. Go on to the next
"If you gentlemen have mastered the--the Grreek bucks," observed the
instructor, with sleek intonation, "we--"
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Marie by H. Rider Haggard:
So she chattered on, as I believe with the object of diverting and
amusing me, for she was a shrewd old soul who knew how important it was
that I should be kept in an equable frame of mind at this crisis in our
Meanwhile I was doing my best with the lump of liver, that tasted
painfully of vatdoek and was gritty with sand. Indeed, when the vrouw's
back was turned I managed to throw the most of it to Hans behind me, who
swallowed it at a gulp as a dog does, since he did not wish to be caught
"God in heaven! how fast you eat, nephew," said the vrouw, catching
sight of my empty tin. Then, eyeing the voracious Hottentot
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Distinguished Provincial at Paris by Honore de Balzac:
religion will be played off against another, and the Charter against
the King. The press will hold up the magistracy to scorn for meting
out rigorous justice to the press, and applaud its action when it
serves the cause of party hatred. The most sensational fictions will
be invented to increase the circulation; Journalism will descend to
mountebanks' tricks worthy of Bobeche; Journalism would serve up its
father with the Attic salt of its own wit sooner than fail to interest
or amuse the public; Journalism will outdo the actor who put his son's
ashes into the urn to draw real tears from his eyes, or the mistress
who sacrifices everything to her lover."
"Journalism is, in fact, the People in folio form," interrupted
|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 Gorgias by Plato:
which I was just now asserting: that the affection of the patient answers
to the affection of the agent?
POLUS: I agree.
SOCRATES: Then, as this is admitted, let me ask whether being punished is
suffering or acting?
POLUS: Suffering, Socrates; there can be no doubt of that.
SOCRATES: And suffering implies an agent?
POLUS: Certainly, Socrates; and he is the punisher.
SOCRATES: And he who punishes rightly, punishes justly?
SOCRATES: And therefore he acts justly?