|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Lady Susan by Jane Austen:
grace. Her address to me was so gentle, frank, and even affectionate, that,
if I had not known how much she has always disliked me for marrying Mr.
Vernon, and that we had never met before, I should have imagined her an
attached friend. One is apt, I believe, to connect assurance of manner with
coquetry, and to expect that an impudent address will naturally attend an
impudent mind; at least I was myself prepared for an improper degree of
confidence in Lady Susan; but her countenance is absolutely sweet, and her
voice and manner winningly mild. I am sorry it is so, for what is this but
deceit? Unfortunately, one knows her too well. She is clever and agreeable,
has all that knowledge of the world which makes conversation easy, and
talks very well, with a happy command of language, which is too often used,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Tao Teh King by Lao-tze:
that of the mind is in abysmal stillness; that of associations is in
their being with the virtuous; that of government is in its securing
good order; that of (the conduct of) affairs is in its ability; and
that of (the initiation of) any movement is in its timeliness.
3. And when (one with the highest excellence) does not wrangle (about
his low position), no one finds fault with him.
9. 1. It is better to leave a vessel unfilled, than to attempt to
carry it when it is full. If you keep feeling a point that has been
sharpened, the point cannot long preserve its sharpness.
2. When gold and jade fill the hall, their possessor cannot keep them
safe. When wealth and honours lead to arrogancy, this brings its evil
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Pivot of Civilization by Margaret Sanger:
activity. Until we recognize this central fact, we cannot understand
the implications and the sinister significance of superficial attempts
to apply rosewater remedies to social evils,--by the enactment of
restrictive and superficial legislation, by wholesale philanthropies
and charities, by publicly burying our heads in the sands of
sentimentality. Self-appointed censors, grossly immoral
``moralists,'' makeshift legislators, all face a heavy responsibility
for the miseries, diseases, and social evils they perpetuate or
intensify by enforcing the primitive taboos of aboriginal customs,
traditions, and outworn laws, which at every step hinder the education
of the people in the scientific knowledge of their sexual nature.
|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 Emma McChesney & Co. by Edna Ferber:
"Ah, you Northerners! You are too quick for us. Come; I myself
must see this garment which you honor by selling." His glance
rested approvingly on Emma McChesney's trim, smart figure.
"That which you sell, it must be quite right."
"I not only sell it," said Emma McChesney; "I wear it."
"That--how is it you Northerners say?--ah, yes--that settles
Six weeks later, in his hotel room in Columbus, Ohio, T. A. Buck
sat reading a letter forwarded from New York and postmarked
Argentina. As he read he chuckled, grew serious, chuckled again
Emma McChesney & Co.