|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde:
LADY HUNSTANTON. But, my dear Gerald, at your age you shouldn't
have any views of life. They are quite out of place. You must be
guided by others in this matter. Lord Illingworth has made you the
most flattering offer, and travelling with him you would see the
world - as much of it, at least, as one should look at - under the
best auspices possible, and stay with all the right people, which
is so important at this solemn moment in your career.
GERALD. I don't want to see the world: I've seen enough of it.
MRS. ALLONBY. I hope you don't think you have exhausted life, Mr.
Arbuthnot. When a man says that, one knows that life has exhausted
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from United States Declaration of Independence:
inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual,
uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their
Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them
into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing
with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions,
to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative Powers,
incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large
for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed
United States Declaration of Independence
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Eryxias by Platonic Imitator:
a peculiar interest for us. The Second Alcibiades shows that the
difficulties about prayer which have perplexed Christian theologians were
not unknown among the followers of Plato. The Eryxias was doubted by the
ancients themselves: yet it may claim the distinction of being, among all
Greek or Roman writings, the one which anticipates in the most striking
manner the modern science of political economy and gives an abstract form
to some of its principal doctrines.
For the translation of these two dialogues I am indebted to my friend and
secretary, Mr. Knight.
That the Dialogue which goes by the name of the Second Alcibiades is a
genuine writing of Plato will not be maintained by any modern critic, and
|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 The Odyssey by Homer:
sore am I come in the twentieth year to mine own country.
And I know how that my coming is desired by you alone of
all my thralls, for from none besides have I heard a prayer
that I might return once more to my home. And now I will
tell you all the truth, even as it shall come to pass. If
the god shall subdue the proud wooers to my hands, I will
bring you each one a wife, and will give you a heritage of
your own and a house builded near to me, and ye twain shall
be thereafter in mine eyes as the brethren and companions
of Telemachus. But behold, I will likewise show you a most
manifest token, that ye may know me well and be certified