|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Apology by Xenophon:
strange!" he answered again: "Strange, do you call it, that to God it
should seem better for me to die at once? Do you not know that up to
this moment I will not concede to any man to have lived a better life
than I have; since what can exceed the pleasure, which has been mine,
of knowing that my whole life has been spent holily and justly?
And indeed this verdict of self-approval I found re-echoed in the
opinion which my friends and intimates have formed concerning me.
And now if my age is still to be prolonged, I know that I cannot
escape paying the penalty of old age, in increasing dimness of
sight and dulness of hearing. I shall find myself slower to learn new
lessons, and apter to forget the lessons I have learnt. And if to
|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 Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:
rejoiceth (gaudet) in the Catastrophe and Peripeitia of a Drama, but
rejoiceth moreover in all the essential and integrant parts of it--it has
its Protasis, Epitasis, Catastasis, its Catastrophe or Peripeitia growing
one out of the other in it, in the order Aristotle first planted them--
without which a tale had better never be told at all, says Slawkenbergius,
but be kept to a man's self.
In all my ten tales, in all my ten decades, have I Slawkenbergius tied down
every tale of them as tightly to this rule, as I have done this of the
stranger and his nose.
--From his first parley with the centinel, to his leaving the city of
Strasburg, after pulling off his crimson-sattin pair of breeches, is the