|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Protagoras by Plato:
statement, as you may remember, was that whereas there were five parts of
virtue none of them was like any other of them; each of them had a separate
function. To this, however, I am not referring, but to the assertion which
he afterwards made that of the five virtues four were nearly akin to each
other, but that the fifth, which was courage, differed greatly from the
others. And of this he gave me the following proof. He said: You will
find, Socrates, that some of the most impious, and unrighteous, and
intemperate, and ignorant of men are among the most courageous; which
proves that courage is very different from the other parts of virtue. I
was surprised at his saying this at the time, and I am still more surprised
now that I have discussed the matter with you. So I asked him whether by
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Travels of Sir John Mandeville by Sir John Mandeville:
of gold full of gravel or sand, some vessels of gold full of coals
burning, some vessels of gold full of water and of wine and of oil,
and some horologes of gold, made full nobly and richly wrought, and
many other manner of instruments after their sciences.
And at certain hours, when them thinketh time, they say to certain
officers that stand before them, ordained for the time to fulfil
their commandments; Make peace!
And then say the officers; Now peace! listen!
And after that, saith another of the philosophers; Every man do
reverence and incline to the emperor, that is God's Son and
sovereign lord of all the world! For now is time! And then every
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from An Open Letter on Translating by Dr. Martin Luther:
taught by the counsel and the consent of Christendom. There is
nothing there but "districte precipiendo mandamus" ["we teach and
strictly command"]. That has been your Holy Spirit. Christendom
has had to suffer this tyranny. This tyranny has robbed it of the
sacrament and, not by its own fault, has been held in captivity.
And still the asses would pawn of on us this intolerable tyranny
of their own wickedness as a willing act and example of
Christendom - and thereby acquit themselves!
But this is getting too long. Let this be enough of an answer to
your questions for now. More another time. Excuse this long
letter. Christ our Lord be with us all. Amen.
|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 A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson:
By, on the highway, low and loud,
By at the gallop goes he.
By at the gallop he goes, and then
By he comes back at the gallop again.
I should like to rise and go
Where the golden apples grow;--
Where below another sky
Parrot islands anchored lie,
And, watched by cockatoos and goats,
A Child's Garden of Verses