|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Odyssey by Homer:
it towards her. Then he left the river, laid himself down among
the rushes, and kissed the bounteous earth.
"Alas," he cried to himself in his dismay, "what ever will
become of me, and how is it all to end? If I stay here upon the
river bed through the long watches of the night, I am so
exhausted that the bitter cold and damp may make an end of
me--for towards sunrise there will be a keen wind blowing from
off the river. If, on the other hand, I climb the hill side,
find shelter in the woods, and sleep in some thicket, I may
escape the cold and have a good night's rest, but some savage
beast may take advantage of me and devour me."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Four Arthurian Romances by Chretien DeTroyes:
of many we were told, that we should present ourselves at the end
of a year at Arthur's court. I went thither at the appointed
time, ready equipped for my business there. I did everything
that had been prescribed: I called and searched for Lancelot,
with whom I was to fight, but I could not gain a sight of him: he
had fled and run away. When I came away, Gawain pledged his word
that, if Lancelot is not alive and does not return within the
time agreed upon, no further postponement will be asked, but that
he himself will fight the battle against me in place of Lancelot.
Arthur has no knight, as is well known, whose fame equals his,
but before the flowers bloom again, I shall see, when we come to
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Message by Honore de Balzac:
was eagerly helping himself to a slice of venison, a housemaid
came in with, "We cannot find madame anywhere, sir!"
I sprang up at the words with a dread in my mind, my fears
written so plainly in my face, that the old canon came out after
me into the garden. The Count, for the sake of appearances, came
as far as the threshold.
"Don't go, don't go!" called he. "Don't trouble yourselves in the
least," but he did not offer to accompany us.
We three--the canon, the housemaid, and I--hurried through the
garden walks and over the bowling-green in the park, shouting,
listening for an answer, growing more uneasy every moment. As we
|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 Dead Souls by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol:
waistcoat, his satin tie, and his exquisitely fitting breeches, while
from his neatly brushed pate, as again and again he struck his hand
against his forehead, there came an odorous whiff of best-quality
"Away with him!" exclaimed the Prince to the gendarme who had just
entered. "Summon the escort to remove him."
"Your Highness!" Chichikov cried again as he clasped the Prince's
knees; but, shuddering all over, and struggling to free himself, the
Prince repeated his order for the prisoner's removal.
"Your Highness, I say that I will not leave this room until you have
accorded me mercy!" cried Chichikov as he clung to the Prince's leg