|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Iliad by Homer:
scream overhead when rain and winter drive them over the flowing
waters of Oceanus to bring death and destruction on the Pygmies,
and they wrangle in the air as they fly; but the Achaeans marched
silently, in high heart, and minded to stand by one another.
As when the south wind spreads a curtain of mist upon the
mountain tops, bad for shepherds but better than night for
thieves, and a man can see no further than he can throw a stone,
even so rose the dust from under their feet as they made all
speed over the plain.
When they were close up with one another, Alexandrus came forward
as champion on the Trojan side. On his shoulders he bore the skin
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Time Machine by H. G. Wells:
had to chatter and explain the business at great length to each
other, and my first attempts to make the exquisite little sounds
of their language caused an immense amount of amusement.
However, I felt like a schoolmaster amidst children, and
persisted, and presently I had a score of noun substantives at
least at my command; and then I got to demonstrative pronouns,
and even the verb "to eat." But it was slow work, and the little
people soon tired and wanted to get away from my interrogations,
so I determined, rather of necessity, to let them give their
lessons in little doses when they felt inclined. And very little
doses I found they were before long, for I never met people more
The Time Machine
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce:
While I looked he reared him solemnly, that incadescent youth,
From the coals that he'd preferred to the advantages of truth.
He cast his eyes about him and above him; then he wrote
On a slab of thin asbestos what I venture here to quote --
For I read it in the rose-light of the everlasting glow:
"Cloudy; variable winds, with local showers; cooler; snow."
WEDDING, n. A ceremony at which two persons undertake to become one,
one undertakes to become nothing, and nothing undertakes to become
WEREWOLF, n. A wolf that was once, or is sometimes, a man. All
The Devil's Dictionary
|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 Records of a Family of Engineers by Robert Louis Stevenson:
returning on board that the first land she made, after rowing
all night, was Fifeness, a distance of about fourteen miles.
The weather having cleared in the morning, the crew stood off
again for the floating light, and got on board in a half-
famished and much exhausted state, having been constantly
rowing for about sixteen hours.
[Sunday, 20th Aug.]
The weather being very favourable to-day, fifty-three
stones were landed, and the builders were not a little
gratified in having built the twenty-second course, consisting
of fifty-one stones, being the first course which had been