|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving:
"Spare the rod and spoil the child." Ichabod Crane's scholars
certainly were not spoiled.
I would not have it imagined, however, that he was one of
those cruel potentates of the school who joy in the smart of
their subjects; on the contrary, he administered justice with
discrimination rather than severity; taking the burden off the
backs of the weak, and laying it on those of the strong. Your
mere puny stripling, that winced at the least flourish of the
rod, was passed by with indulgence; but the claims of justice
were satisfied by inflicting a double portion on some little
tough wrong headed, broad-skirted Dutch urchin, who sulked and
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The $30,000 Bequest and Other Stories by Mark Twain:
said he, trembling, "I have long desired a moment like this.
I dare not let it escape. I fear the consequences; yet I hope
your indulgence will at least hear my petition. Can you not
anticipate what I would say, and what I am about to express?
Will not you, like Minerva, who sprung from the brain of Jupiter,
release me from thy winding chains or cure me--" "Say no more,
Elfonzo," answered Ambulinia, with a serious look, raising her hand
as if she intended to swear eternal hatred against the whole world;
"another lady in my place would have perhaps answered your question
in bitter coldness. I know not the little arts of my sex.
I care but little for the vanity of those who would chide me,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe:
any other way, though not profitably, we would never more set foot
on board that unhappy vessel. Indeed, I must acknowledge, that of
all the circumstances of life that ever I had any experience of,
nothing makes mankind so completely miserable as that of being in
constant fear. Well does the Scripture say, "The fear of man
brings a snare"; it is a life of death, and the mind is so entirely
oppressed by it, that it is capable of no relief.
Nor did it fail of its usual operations upon the fancy, by
heightening every danger; representing the English and Dutch
captains to be men incapable of hearing reason, or of
distinguishing between honest men and rogues; or between a story
|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 The Magic of Oz by L. Frank Baum:
"Your wooden leg ain't so bad, Cap'n," she remarked, looking at it
critically. "Anyhow, it don't take root on a Magic Island, like our
meat legs do."
"I ain't complainin'," said Cap'n Bill. "What's that swimmin'
towards us, Trot?" he added, looking over the Magic Flower and across
The girl looked, too, and then she replied.
"It's a bird of some sort. It's like a duck, only I never saw a
duck have so many colors."
The bird swam swiftly and gracefully toward the Magic Isle, and as
The Magic of Oz