|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from McTeague by Frank Norris:
"And didn't you sit close to the partition on your side?
Sometimes I was sure of it. I could even fancy that I could
hear your dress brushing against the wall-paper close beside
me. Didn't you sit close to the partition?"
"I--I don't know where I sat."
Old Grannis shyly put out his hand and took hers as it lay
upon her lap.
"Didn't you sit close to the partition on your side?" he
"No--I don't know--perhaps--sometimes. Oh, yes," she
exclaimed, with a little gasp, "Oh, yes, I often did."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Reason Discourse by Rene Descartes:
always among the Chinese or with savages, and the circumstance that in
dress itself the fashion which pleased us ten years ago, and which may
again, perhaps, be received into favor before ten years have gone,
appears to us at this moment extravagant and ridiculous. I was thus led
to infer that the ground of our opinions is far more custom and example
than any certain knowledge. And, finally, although such be the ground of
our opinions, I remarked that a plurality of suffrages is no guarantee of
truth where it is at all of difficult discovery, as in such cases it is
much more likely that it will be found by one than by many. I could,
however, select from the crowd no one whose opinions seemed worthy of
preference, and thus I found myself constrained, as it were, to use my own
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay:
the muscles of his arm would permit. What he saw was this. The
star, which to the naked eye appeared as a single yellow point of
light, now became clearly split into two bright but minute suns, the
larger of which was still yellow, while its smaller companion was a
beautiful blue. But this was not all. Apparently circulating around
the yellow sun was a comparatively small and hardly distinguishable
satellite, which seemed to shine, not by its own, but by reflected
light.... Maskull lowered and raised his arm repeatedly. The same
spectacle revealed itself again and again, but he was able to see
nothing else. Then he passed back the lens to Krag, without a word,
and stood chewing his underlip.
|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 Agesilaus by Xenophon:
He was accustomed in the midst of anxiety to wear an aspect of gaiety,
but, when the victory was won, of gentleness.
Amongst friends his warmest greeting was reserved, not for the most
powerful, but for the most ardent; and if he hated, it was not him
who, being evil entreated, retaliated, but one who, having had
kindness done to him, seemed incapable of gratitude.
He rejoiced when sordid greed was rewarded with poverty; and still
more if he might himself enrich a righteous man, since his wish was to
render uprightness more profitable than iniquity.
He made it a practice to associate with all kinds of people, but to be