|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Time Machine by H. G. Wells:
plaintively. But the problems of the world had to be mastered.
I had not, I said to myself, come into the future to carry on a
miniature flirtation. Yet her distress when I left her was very
great, her expostulations at the parting were sometimes frantic,
and I think, altogether, I had as much trouble as comfort from
her devotion. Nevertheless she was, somehow, a very great
comfort. I thought it was mere childish affection that made her
cling to me. Until it was too late, I did not clearly know what
I had inflicted upon her when I left her. Nor until it was too
late did I clearly understand what she was to me. For, by merely
seeming fond of me, and showing in her weak, futile way that she
The Time Machine
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood by Howard Pyle:
of Nottingham and a gay company were hunting near the forest.
When Little John came to the Sheriff he doffed his cap and bent his knee.
"God save thee, good master," quoth he.
"Why, Reynold Greenleaf!" cried the Sheriff, "whence comest thou
and where hast thou been?"
"I have been in the forest," answered Little John, speaking amazedly,
"and there I saw a sight such as ne'er before man's eyes beheld!
Yonder I saw a young hart all in green from top to toe, and about him was a
herd of threescore deer, and they, too, were all of green from head to foot.
Yet I dared not shoot, good master, for fear lest they should slay me."
"Why, how now, Reynold Greenleaf," cried the Sheriff, "art thou dreaming
The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Seraphita by Honore de Balzac:
extremities; where the extremities are gathered up, like a woman's
hair, to weave the mysterious braid which binds us in that invisible
ether to the Thought Divine!
"Behold the man bending above that furrow moistened with his tears,
who lifts his head for an instant to question Heaven; behold the woman
gathering her children that she may feed them with her milk; see him
who lashes the ropes in the height of the gale; see her who sits in
the hollow of the rocks, awaiting the father! Behold all they who
stretch their hands in want after a lifetime spent in thankless toil.
To all peace and courage, and to all farewell!
"Hear you the cry of the soldier, dying nameless and unknown? the wail
|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 Long Odds by H. Rider Haggard:
wind. Presently, above the crackling of the fire, I heard a startled
roar, then another and another. So the lions were at home.
"I was beginning to get excited now, for, as you fellows know, there is
nothing in experience to warm up your nerves like a lion at close
quarters, unless it is a wounded buffalo; and I became still more so
when I made out through the smoke that the lions were all moving about
on the extreme edge of the reeds. Occasionally they would pop their
heads out like rabbits from a burrow, and then, catching sight of me
standing about fifty yards away, draw them back again. I knew that it
must be getting pretty warm behind them, and that they could not keep
the game up for long; and I was not mistaken, for suddenly all four of