|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Lesser Bourgeoisie by Honore de Balzac:
concerned; the model nation when the faults of the government are in
question. He admits, with his chosen paper, the democratic element,
but refuses in conversation all compact with the republican spirit.
The republican spirit to him means 1793, rioting, the Terror, and
agrarian law. The democratic element is the development of the lesser
bourgeoisie, the reign of Phellions.
The worthy old man is always dignified; dignity serves to explain his
life. He has brought up his children with dignity; he has kept himself
a father in their eyes; he insists on being honored in his home, just
as he himself honors power and his superiors. He has never made debts.
As a juryman his conscience obliges him to sweat blood and water in
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Large Catechism by Dr. Martin Luther:
called a church, except only for the reason that the multitude
assembles there. For we who assemble there make and choose for
ourselves a particular place, and give a name to the house according to
Thus the word Kirche (church) means really nothing else than a common
assembly and is not German by idiom, but Greek (as is also the word
ecclesia); for in their own language they call it kyria, as in Latin it
is called curia. Therefore in genuine German, in our mother-tongue, it
ought to be called a Christian congregation or assembly (eine
christliche Gemeinde oder Sammlung), or, best of all and most clearly,
holy Christendom (eine heilige Christenheit).
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Buttered Side Down by Edna Ferber:
the drug store--those clear-eyed, innocently coquettish, giggling,
blushing girls in their middy blouses and white skirts, their
slender arms and throats browned from tennis and boating, their
eyes smiling into his as they sat perched at the fountain after a
hot set of tennis--those slim, clean young boys, sun-browned,
laughing, their talk all of swimming, and boating, and tennis, and
He did not realize that it was desertion--that thought that
grew and grew in his mind. In it there was nothing of
faithlessness to his country. He was only trying to be true to
himself, and to the things that his mother had taught him. He only
Buttered Side Down
|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 Ten Years Later by Alexandre Dumas:
Anne of Austria reflected for a moment, seemingly absorbed
in sad and serious thought. "It would be a consolation for
me," she said, "if you were to return on the day when I
shall be carried to my final resting-place at Saint-Denis
beside the king, my husband."
"Madame, you are goodness itself; the tide of prosperity is
setting in on you; your cup brims over with happiness, and
many long years are yet before you."
"In that case you will not come for some time, then," said
the queen, endeavoring to smile.
"I shall not return," said Buckingham, "young as I am. Death
Ten Years Later