|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Les Miserables by Victor Hugo:
like the women, of joy like the children. And then he reflected
that these had been two houses of God which had received him
in succession at two critical moments in his life: the first,
when all doors were closed and when human society rejected him;
the second, at a moment when human society had again set out in
pursuit of him, and when the galleys were again yawning; and that,
had it not been for the first, he should have relapsed into crime,
and had it not been for the second, into torment.
His whole heart melted in gratitude, and he loved more and more.
Many years passed in this manner; Cosette was growing up.
[The end of Volume II. "Cosette"]
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood by Howard Pyle:
and lay on his face upon the ground, his arrows rattling about
him from out of his quiver, the gray goose shaft wet with his;
heart's blood. Then, before the others could gather their wits
about them, Robin Hood was gone into the depths of the greenwood.
Some started after him, but not with much heart, for each feared
to suffer the death of his fellow; so presently they all came
and lifted the dead man up and bore him away to Nottingham Town.
Meanwhile Robin Hood ran through the greenwood. Gone was all the joy
and brightness from everything, for his heart was sick within him,
and it was borne in upon his soul that he had slain a man.
"Alas!" cried he, "thou hast found me an archer that will make
The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Footnote to History by Robert Louis Stevenson:
German land and under German colours, so that any rebellion was
constructive war on Germany, was a trick apparently invented by
Becker, and which we shall find was repeated and persevered in till
Otto Martin was at this time magistrate in the municipality. The
post was held in turn by the three nationalities; Martin had served
far beyond his term, and should have been succeeded months before
by an American. To make the change it was necessary to hold a
meeting of the municipal board, consisting of the three consuls,
each backed by an assessor. And for some time these meetings had
been evaded or refused by the German consul. As long as it was
|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 Walking by Henry David Thoreau:
and the threescore years and ten of human life. It will never
become quite familiar to you.
Nowadays almost all man's improvements, so called, as the
building of houses and the cutting down of the forest and of all
large trees, simply deform the landscape, and make it more and
more tame and cheap. A people who would begin by burning the
fences and let the forest stand! I saw the fences half consumed,
their ends lost in the middle of the prairie, and some worldly
miser with a surveyor looking after his bounds, while heaven had
taken place around him, and he did not see the angels going to
and fro, but was looking for an old post-hole in the midst of