|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Moby Dick by Herman Melville:
sailor-like but still reverential dexterity, hand over hand, mounted
the steps as if ascending the main-top of his vessel.
The perpendicular parts of this side ladder, as is usually the case
with swinging ones, were of cloth-covered rope, only the rounds were
of wood, so that at every step there was a joint. At my first
glimpse of the pulpit, it had not escaped me that however convenient
for a ship, these joints in the present instance seemed unnecessary.
For I was not prepared to see Father Mapple after gaining the height,
slowly turn round, and stooping over the pulpit, deliberately drag up
the ladder step by step, till the whole was deposited within, leaving
him impregnable in his little Quebec.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Captain Stormfield by Mark Twain:
stepping out amongst the redeemed in such a rig, and that made me
hang back and come to anchor again. People got to eying me -
clerks, you know - wondering why I didn't get under way. I
couldn't stand this long - it was too uncomfortable. So at last I
plucked up courage and tipped the head clerk a signal. He says -
"What! you here yet? What's wanting?"
Says I, in a low voice and very confidential, making a trumpet with
my hands at his ear -
"I beg pardon, and you mustn't mind my reminding you, and seeming
to meddle, but hain't you forgot something?"
He studied a second, and says -
|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:
confinement with patience, and were very thankful that they had
such good usage as to have provisions and light left them; for
Friday gave them candles (such as we made ourselves) for their
comfort; and they did not know but that he stood sentinel over them
at the entrance.
The other prisoners had better usage; two of them were kept
pinioned, indeed, because the captain was not able to trust them;
but the other two were taken into my service, upon the captain's
recommendation, and upon their solemnly engaging to live and die
with us; so with them and the three honest men we were seven men,
well armed; and I made no doubt we should be able to deal well
|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 Padre Ignacio by Owen Wister:
through the mountains, a road led to them, and also to many more that
were too distant behind the hills for ships to serve--a rough road, long
and lonely, punctuated with church towers and gardens. For the Fathers
gradually so stationed their settlements that the traveler might each
morning ride out from one mission and by evening of a day's fair journey
ride into the next. A lonely, rough, dangerous road, but lovely, too,
with a name like music--El Camino Real. Like music also were the names of
the missions--San Juan Capistrano, San Luis Rey de Francia, San Miguel,
Santa Ynes--their very list is a song.
So there, by-and-by, was our continent, with the locomotive whistling
from Savannah to Boston along its eastern edge, and on the western the