|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Wife, et al by Anton Chekhov:
from the small betrays their ignorance of practical life more
than anything. All difficult questions that have more or less a
social character (for instance the migration question) they
settle by studying monographs on the subject, but not by way of
scientific investigation or experiment, though that method is at
their disposal and is more in keeping with their calling. They
gladly become ward-surgeons, assistants, demonstrators, external
teachers, and are ready to fill such posts until they are forty,
though independence, a sense of freedom and personal initiative,
are no less necessary in science than, for instance, in art or
commerce. I have pupils and listeners, but no successors and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Gambara by Honore de Balzac:
no further use, still showing her that he can never forget her! What
fireworks of triumph! what a rush of glad and rippling song go up from
the two young voices (first and second soprano) of Ayesha and Hafsa,
supported by Ali and his wife, by Omar and Abubekir! Weep!--rejoice!--
Triumph and tears! Such is life."
Marianna could not control her tears, and Andrea was so deeply moved
that his eyes were moist. The Neapolitan cook was startled by the
magnetic influence of the ideas expressed by Gambara's convulsive
The composer looked round, saw the group, and smiled.
"At last you understand me!" said he.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Complete Poems of Longfellow by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:
Just as he found him waiting in the wood;
And told the Prior that, to alleviate
The daily labors of the brotherhood,
The owner, being a man of means and thrift,
Bestowed him on the convent as a gift.
And thereupon the Prior for many days
Revolved this serious matter in his mind,
And turned it over many different ways,
Hoping that some safe issue he might find;
But stood in fear of what the world would say,
If he accepted presents of this kind,
|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 Proposed Roads To Freedom by Bertrand Russell:
to know him more easily and to be more certain of him.
The last part of this statute provides that certain poor
people may be employed by a place or by persons, who
are willing to give them food and drink and to find them
work. This kind of parish-slaves was kept up in England
until far into the 19th century under the name of
 Vol. i, pp. 758, 759.
Page after page and chapter after chapter of
facts of this nature, each brought up to illustrate
some fatalistic theory which Marx professes to have