|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Treatise on Parents and Children by George Bernard Shaw:
is an attempt to keep this force within beneficent bounds. What
corrupts civilization, religion, law, and convention (and they are at
present pretty nearly as corrupt as they dare) is the constant
attempts made by the wills of individuals and classes to thwart the
wills and enslave the powers of other individuals and classes. The
powers of the parent and the schoolmaster, and of their public
analogues the lawgiver and the judge, become instruments of tyranny in
the hands of those who are too narrow-minded to understand law and
exercise judgment; and in their hands (with us they mostly fall into
such hands) law becomes tyranny. And what is a tyrant? Quite simply
a person who says to another person, young or old, "You shall do as I
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Protagoras by Plato:
Prodicus heard and approved; but Protagoras said: Your correction,
Socrates, involves a greater error than is contained in the sentence which
you are correcting.
Alas! I said, Protagoras; then I am a sorry physician, and do but aggravate
a disorder which I am seeking to cure.
Such is the fact, he said.
How so? I asked.
The poet, he replied, could never have made such a mistake as to say that
virtue, which in the opinion of all men is the hardest of all things, can
be easily retained.