|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Nada the Lily by H. Rider Haggard:
summoned a gathering of all his headmen, and told them it was his
desire that the People of the Axe should no longer be a little people;
that they should grow great and number their cattle by tens of
The headmen asked how this might be brought about--would he then make
war on Dingaan the King? Umslopogaas answered no, he would win the
favour of the king thus: and he told them of the Lily maid and of the
Halakazi tribe in Swaziland, and of how he would go up against that
tribe. Now some of the headmen said yea to this and some said nay, and
the talk ran high and lasted till the evening. But when the evening
was come Umslopogaas rose and said that he was chief under the Axe,
Nada the Lily
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Resurrection by Leo Tolstoy:
the Tonkin expedition that the General strongly disapproved of,
now the universal bribery and corruption in Siberia. All these
topics did not interest Nekhludoff much.
But after dinner, over their coffee, Nekhludoff and the
Englishman began a very interesting conversation about Gladstone,
and Nekhludoff thought he had said many clever things which were
noticed by his interlocutor. And Nekhludoff felt it more and more
pleasant to be sipping his coffee seated in an easy-chair among
amiable, well-bred people. And when at the Englishman's request
the hostess went up to the piano with the ex-director of the
Government department, and they began to play in well-practised
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from La Grande Breteche by Honore de Balzac:
front of the fireplace. The unsuspecting husband fancied that Rosalie
was in the cupboard; nevertheless, a doubt, ringing in his ears like a
peal of bells, put him on his guard; he looked at his wife, and read
in her eyes an indescribably anxious and haunted expression.
" 'You are very late,' said she.--Her voice, usually so clear and
sweet, struck him as being slightly husky.
"Monsieur de Merret made no reply, for at this moment Rosalie came in.
This was like a thunder-clap. He walked up and down the room, going
from one window to another at a regular pace, his arms folded.
" 'Have you had bad news, or are you ill?' his wife asked him timidly,
while Rosalie helped her to undress. He made no reply.
La Grande Breteche
|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 Fairy Tales by Hans Christian Andersen:
the supposed sleeper lost his balance, the body lay motionless, stretched out
on the pavement: the man was dead. When the patrol came up, all his comrades,
who comprehended nothing of the whole affair, were seized with a dreadful
fright, for dead be was, and he remained so. The proper authorities were
informed of the circumstance, people talked a good deal about it, and in the
morning the body was carried to the hospital.
Now that would be a very pretty joke, if the spirit when it came back and
looked for the body in East Street, were not to find one. No doubt it would,
in its anxiety, run off to the police, and then to the "Hue and Cry" office,
to announce that "the finder will be handsomely rewarded," and at last away to
the hospital; yet we may boldly assert that the soul is shrewdest when it