|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Fantastic Fables by Ambrose Bierce:
by restoring what you stole from the Government."
"Good heavens!" cried the Patriot; "if I do that, I shall have
nothing to deposit with you."
"I don't see that," the Honest Banker replied. "We are not the
whole American people."
"Ah, I understand," said the Patriot, musing. "At what sum do you
estimate this bank's proportion of the country's loss by me?"
"About a dollar," answered the Honest Banker.
And with a proud consciousness of serving his country wisely and
well he charged that sum to the account.
The Mourning Brothers
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Footnote to History by Robert Louis Stevenson:
all passed into the hands of Tamasese-Brandeis; a German was
secured upon the bench; and the German flag might wave over her
puppet unquestioned. But there is a law of human nature which
diplomatists should be taught at school, and it seems they are not;
that men can tolerate bare injustice, but not the combination of
injustice and subterfuge. Hence the chequered career of the
thimble-rigger. Had the municipality been seized by open force,
there might have been complaint, it would not have aroused the same
This grudge was an ill gift to bring to Brandeis, who had trouble
enough in front of him without. He was an alien, he was supported
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Apology by Xenophon:
he added: "By a lifelong persistence in doing nothing wrong, and that
I take to be the finest practice for his defence which a man could
devise." Presently reverting to the topic, Hermogenes demanded: "Do
you not see, SOcrates, how often Athenian juries are constrained by
arguments to put quite innocent people to death, and not less often to
acquit the guilty, either through some touch of pity excited by the
pleadings, or that the defendant had skill to turn some charming
phrase?" Thus appealed to, Socrates replied: "Nay, solemnly I tell
you, twice already I have essayed to consider my defence, and twice
the divinity hinders me"; and to the remark of Hermogenes, "That is
strange!" he answered again: "Strange, do you call it, that to God it
|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 Manon Lescaut by Abbe Prevost:
occasionally to undertake short journeys, which, however, I took
good care to abridge as much as possible.
I was one day returning from Rouen, where I had been, at her
request, to attend a cause then pending before the Parliament of
Normandy, respecting an inheritance to which I had claims derived
from my maternal grandfather. Having taken the road by Evreux,
where I slept the first night, I on the following day, about
dinner-time, reached Passy, a distance of five or six leagues. I
was amazed, on entering this quiet town, to see all the
inhabitants in commotion. They were pouring from their houses in
crowds, towards the gate of a small inn, immediately before which