|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Bucolics by Virgil:
This shepherd's crook, which, howso hard he begged,
Antigenes, then worthy to be loved,
Prevailed not to obtain- with brass, you see,
And equal knots, Menalcas, fashioned fair!
First my Thalia stooped in sportive mood
To Syracusan strains, nor blushed within
The woods to house her. When I sought to tell
Of battles and of kings, the Cynthian god
Plucked at mine ear and warned me: "Tityrus,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Profits of Religion by Upton Sinclair:
The untamed giants of nature shall bow down--The tides, the
tempest and the lightning cease From mockery and destruction,
and be turned Unto the making of the soul of man.
It is a conceivable thing that man may learn to create his food
from the elements without the slow processes of agriculture; it
is conceivable that he may master the bacteria which at present
prey upon his body, and so put an end to death. It is certain
that he will ascertain the laws of heredity, and create human
qualities as he has created the spurs of the fighting-cock and
the legs of the greyhound. He will find out what genius is, and
the laws of its being, and the tests whereby it may be
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Democracy In America, Volume 2 by Alexis de Toqueville:
only to be accounted for by the ardor of the passions, and who
endure the life of savages for a time, in order to conquer and
civilize the backwoods.
"When the pioneer perceived that we were crossing his
threshold, he came to meet us and shake hands, as is their
custom; but his face was quite unmoved; he opened the
conversation by inquiring what was going on in the world; and
when his curiosity was satisfied, he held his peace, as if he
were tired by the noise and importunity of mankind. When we
questioned him in our turn, he gave us all the information we
required; he then attended sedulously, but without eagerness, to
|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 Resurrection by Leo Tolstoy:
Korchagin with difficulty, chewing carefully with his false
teeth, and lifting his bloodshot eyes (which had no visible lids
to them) to Nekhludoff.
"Stephen!" he said, with his mouth full, addressing the stout,
dignified butler, and pointing with his eyes to the empty place.
Though Nekhludoff knew Korchagin very well, and had often seen
him at dinner, to-day this red face with the sensual smacking
lips, the fat neck above the napkin stuck into his waistcoat, and
the whole over-fed military figure, struck him very disagreeably.
Then Nekhludoff remembered, without wishing to, what he knew of
the cruelty of this man, who, when in command, used to have men