|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson:
and, keeping them in a perpetual tender solicitude about his life,
blinded them the more effectually to his faults.
It was during this time that I perceived most clearly the effect of
manner, and was led to lament most deeply the plainness of my own.
Mr. Henry had the essence of a gentleman; when he was moved, when
there was any call of circumstance, he could play his part with
dignity and spirit; but in the day's commerce (it is idle to deny
it) he fell short of the ornamental. The Master (on the other
hand) had never a movement but it commanded him. So it befell that
when the one appeared gracious and the other ungracious, every
trick of their bodies seemed to call out confirmation. Not that
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Enchanted Island of Yew by L. Frank Baum:
"That is a good suggestion," replied the prince. "Good by, my
friends," he added, addressing the men.
They both bowed, and although they still seemed somewhat frightened
they answered him civilly and in the same words, and closed their
doors at the same time.
So Prince Marvel and Nerle rode up the double path to the hills, and
the two cows became frightened and ran away with the same swinging
step, keeping an exact space apart. And when they were a safe
distance they both stopped, looked over their right shoulders, and
"mooed" at the same instant.
14. The Ki and the Ki-Ki
The Enchanted Island of Yew
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Odyssey by Homer:
curved bow. And in the morning bid Melanthius, the
goatherd, to lead hither the very best goats in all his
herds, that we may lay pieces of the thighs on the altar of
Apollo the archer, and assay the bow and make an end of the
So spake Antinous, and the saying pleased them well. Then
the henchmen poured water on their hands, and pages crowned
the mixing-bowls with drink, and served out the wine to
all, when they had poured for libation into each cup in
turn. But when they had poured forth and had drunken to
their hearts' desire, Odysseus of many counsels spake among
|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 Life in the Iron-Mills by Rebecca Davis:
knowing, all-seeing, crowned by Nature, reigning,--the keen
glance of his eye falling like a sceptre on other men. And yet
his instinct taught him that he too--He! He looked at himself
with sudden loathing, sick, wrung his hands With a cry, and then
was silent. With all the phantoms of his heated, ignorant
fancy, Wolfe had not been vague in his ambitions. They were
practical, slowly built up before him out of his knowledge of
what he could do. Through years he had day by day made this
hope a real thing to himself,--a clear, projected figure of
himself, as he might become.
Able to speak, to know what was best, to raise these men and
Life in the Iron-Mills