|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Charmides by Plato:
temperance: and the same of other things.
That is evident.
How will wisdom, regarded only as a knowledge of knowledge or science of
science, ever teach him that he knows health, or that he knows building?
It is impossible.
Then he who is ignorant of these things will only know that he knows, but
not what he knows?
Then wisdom or being wise appears to be not the knowledge of the things
which we do or do not know, but only the knowledge that we know or do not
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Catherine de Medici by Honore de Balzac:
Catherine, who had founded great hopes on the age of her rival, tried
more than once to overthrow her. It was a dumb, underhand, terrible
struggle. The day came when Catherine believed herself for a moment on
the verge of success. In 1554, Diane, who was ill, begged the king to
go to Saint-Germain and leave her for a short time until she
recovered. This stately coquette did not choose to be seen in the
midst of medical appliances and without the splendors of apparel.
Catherine arranged, as a welcome to her husband, a magnificent ballet,
in which six beautiful young girls were to recite a poem in his honor.
She chose for this function Miss Fleming, a relation of her uncle the
Duke of Albany, the handsomest young woman, some say, that was ever
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Wheels of Chance by H. G. Wells:
been born. The glory of life had departed. Bloomin' Dook, indeed!
These unwomanly women!
There was a soft whirr, the click of a brake, two footfalls, and
the Young Lady in Grey stood holding her machine. She had turned
round and come back to him. The warm sunlight now was in her
face. "Are you hurt?" she said. She had a pretty, clear, girlish
voice. She was really very young--quite a girl, in fact. And rode
so well! It was a bitter draught.
Mr. Hoopdriver stood up at once. "Not a bit," he said, a little
ruefully. He became painfully aware that large patches of gravel
scarcely improve the appearance of a Norfolk suit. "I'm very
|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 Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbot:
a Fourth Dimension, which my Lord perceives with the inner eye
of thought. And that it must exist my Lord himself has taught me.
Or can he have forgotten what he himself imparted to his servant?
In One Dimension, did not a moving Point produce a Line
with TWO terminal points?
In Two Dimensions, did not a moving Line produce a Square
with FOUR terminal points?
In Three Dimensions, did not a moving Square produce --
did not this eye of mine behold it -- that blessed Being, a Cube,
with EIGHT terminal points?
And in Four Dimensions shall not a moving Cube -- alas, for Analogy,
Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions