|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Sanitary and Social Lectures by Charles Kingsley:
breath you take in and the breath you give out? And next, why has
it a similar effect on animal life and a lighted candle?
The difference is this. The breath which you take in is, or ought
to be, pure air, composed, on the whole, of oxygen and nitrogen,
with a minute portion of carbonic acid.
The breath which you give out is an impure air, to which has been
added, among other matters which will not support life, an excess
of carbonic acid.
That this is the fact you can prove for yourselves by a simple
experiment. Get a little lime-water at the chemist's, and breathe
into it through a glass tube; your breath will at once make the
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Finished by H. Rider Haggard:
"I expect it will later," I replied. "Meanwhile, thank God it
wasn't at the top of the kloof. They won't catch us on the
horses, which they never thought of killing first."
"They are going to try though. Look behind you."
I looked and saw twenty or thirty men emerging from the mouth of
the kloof in pursuit.
"No time to stop to get those horns," he said with a sigh.
"No," I answered, "unless you are particularly anxious to say
good-bye to the world pinned over a broken ant-heap in the sun,
or something pleasant of the sort."
Then we rode on in silence, I thinking what a fool I had been
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The American by Henry James:
his revenge, and he was able to say that it was provisionally pigeon-holed
in a very safe place; it would keep till called for.
He arrived in London in the midst of what is called "the season,"
and it seemed to him at first that he might here put himself
in the way of being diverted from his heavy-heartedness.
He knew no one in all England, but the spectacle of the
mighty metropolis roused him somewhat from his apathy.
Anything that was enormous usually found favor with Newman,
and the multitudinous energies and industries of England stirred
within him a dull vivacity of contemplation. It is on record
that the weather, at that moment, was of the finest English quality;
|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 Symposium by Plato:
first time, he wanted to go away at once as soon as supper was over, and I
had not the face to detain him. The second time, still in pursuance of my
design, after we had supped, I went on conversing far into the night, and
when he wanted to go away, I pretended that the hour was late and that he
had much better remain. So he lay down on the couch next to me, the same
on which he had supped, and there was no one but ourselves sleeping in the
apartment. All this may be told without shame to any one. But what
follows I could hardly tell you if I were sober. Yet as the proverb says,
'In vino veritas,' whether with boys, or without them (In allusion to two
proverbs.); and therefore I must speak. Nor, again, should I be justified
in concealing the lofty actions of Socrates when I come to praise him.