|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Across The Plains by Robert Louis Stevenson:
There we were, hand to hand and (when it pleased us) eye to eye;
and either might have burst himself with shouting, and not a
whisper come to his companion's hearing. Each, in his own little
world of air, stood incommunicably separate.
Bob had told me ere this a little tale, a five minutes' drama at
the bottom of the sea, which at that moment possibly shot across my
mind. He was down with another, settling a stone of the sea-wall.
They had it well adjusted, Bob gave the signal, the scissors were
slipped, the stone set home; and it was time to turn to something
else. But still his companion remained bowed over the block like a
mourner on a tomb, or only raised himself to make absurd
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from St. Ives by Robert Louis Stevenson:
perfidy of the Britannic Government stood nowhere more openly
confessed than in one particular of our discipline: that we were
shaved twice in the week. To a man who has loved all his life to
be fresh shaven, can a more irritating indignity be devised?
Monday and Thursday were the days. Take the Thursday, and conceive
the picture I must present by Sunday evening! And Saturday, which
was almost as bad, was the great day for visitors.
Those who came to our market were of all qualities, men and women,
the lean and the stout, the plain and the fairly pretty. Sure, if
people at all understood the power of beauty, there would be no
prayers addressed except to Venus; and the mere privilege of
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Voyage to Abyssinia by Father Lobo:
In the first part the greatest freedom has been used in reducing the
narration into a narrow compass, so that it is by no means a
translation but an epitome, in which, whether everything either
useful or entertaining be comprised, the compiler is least qualified
In the account of Abyssinia, and the continuation, the authors have
been followed with more exactness, and as few passages appeared
either insignificant or tedious, few have been either shortened or
The dissertations are the only part in which an exact translation
|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 Mrs. Warren's Profession by George Bernard Shaw:
you can: what was it but stealing? I'd bring you up in my own
house, I would.
VIVIE [quietly] In one of your own houses.
MRS WARREN [screaming] Listen to her! listen to how she spits on
her mother's grey hairs! Oh, may you live to have your own
daughter tear and trample on you as you have trampled on me. And
you will: you will. No woman ever had luck with a mother's curse
VIVIE. I wish you wouldnt rant, mother. It only hardens me.
Come: I suppose I am the only young woman you ever had in your
power that you did good to. Dont spoil it all now.