|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Secret Places of the Heart by H. G. Wells:
Maidenhead life. At lunch there had been five or six small
tables with quietly affectionate couples who talked in
undertones, a tableful of bright-coloured Jews who talked in
overtones, and a family party from the Midlands, badly
smitten with shyness, who did not talk at all. "A resort, of
honeymoon couples," said the doctor, and then rather
knowingly: "Temporary honeymoons, I fancy, in one or two of
"Decidedly temporary," said Sir Richmond, considering the
company--"in most of the cases anyhow. The two in the corner
might be married. You never know nowadays."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Soul of the Far East by Percival Lowell:
philosophy. It undertakes to provide nostrums for spiritual ills,
but is dumb as to the constitution of the soul for which it professes
to prescribe. Its pills are to be swallowed unquestioningly by the
patient, and are warranted to cure; and owing to the two great human
frailties, fear and credulity, its practice is very large.
Possessing, however, no philosophic diploma, it is without the pale
of the present discussion.
The demon-worship of Korea is a mild form of the same thing with the
hierarchy left out, every man there being his own spiritual adviser.
An ordinary Korean is born with an innate belief in malevolent
spirits, whom he accordingly propitiates from time to time. One of
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Caesar's Commentaries in Latin by Julius Caesar:
Quo proelio sublati Helvetii, quod quingentis equitibus tantam
multitudinem equitum propulerant, audacius subsistere non numquam et
novissimo agmine proelio nostros lacessere coeperunt. Caesar suos a
proelio continebat, ac satis habebat in praesentia hostem rapinis,
pabulationibus populationibusque prohibere. Ita dies circiter XV iter
fecerunt uti inter novissimum hostium agmen et nostrum primum non amplius
quinis aut senis milibus passuum interesset.
Interim cotidie Caesar Haeduos frumentum, quod essent publice
polliciti, flagitare. Nam propter frigora [quod Gallia sub
septentrionibus, ut ante dictum est, posita est,] non modo frumenta in
agris matura non erant, sed ne pabuli quidem satis magna copia suppetebat;
|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 A Sentimental Journey by Laurence Sterne:
Nature her tribute, - and wept bitterly.
He said, heaven had accepted the conditions; and that he had set
out from his cottage with this poor creature, who had been a
patient partner of his journey; - that it had eaten the same bread
with him all the way, and was unto him as a friend.
Every body who stood about, heard the poor fellow with concern. -
La Fleur offered him money. - The mourner said he did not want it;
- it was not the value of the ass - but the loss of him. - The ass,
he said, he was assured, loved him; - and upon this told them a
long story of a mischance upon their passage over the Pyrenean
mountains, which had separated them from each other three days;