|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Lesser Bourgeoisie by Honore de Balzac:
besides, it isn't dinner they want, but a breakfast--that suits them
best. In the evening these gentlemen have to go to first
representations, and make up their papers, not to speak of their own
little private doings; whereas in the mornings they have nothing to
think about. As for me, it is always breakfasts that I give."
"But that costs money, breakfasts like that," said Thuillier;
"journalists are gourmands."
"Bah! twenty francs a head, without wine. Say you have ten of them;
three hundred francs will see you handsomely through the whole thing.
In fact, as a matter of economy, breakfasts are preferable; for a
dinner you wouldn't get off under five hundred francs."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Distinguished Provincial at Paris by Honore de Balzac:
to the banks of his Charente; a craving for happiness and home awoke
in him; and with the craving, came one of the sudden febrile bursts of
energy which half-feminine natures like his mistake for strength. He
would not give up until he had poured out his heart to David Sechard,
and taken counsel of the three good angels still left to him on earth.
As he lounged along, he caught sight of Berenice--Berenice in her
Sunday clothes, speaking to a stranger at the corner of the Rue de la
Lune and the filthy Boulevard Bonne-Nouvelle, where she had taken her
"What are you doing?" asked Lucien, dismayed by a sudden suspicion.
"Here are your twenty francs," said the girl, slipping four five-franc
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Ferragus by Honore de Balzac:
love gains a stronger life, as the earth after rain, or the shock
still echoes like distant thunder through a cloudless sky. It is
impossible to recover absolutely the former life; love will either
increase or diminish.
At breakfast, Monsieur and Madame Jules showed to each other those
particular attentions in which there is always something of
affectation. There were glances of forced gaiety, which seemed the
efforts of persons endeavoring to deceive themselves. Jules had
involuntary doubts, his wife had positive fears. Still, sure of each
other, they had slept. Was this strained condition the effect of a
want of faith, or was it only a memory of their nocturnal scene? They
|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 Lay Morals by Robert Louis Stevenson:
before, his inner self or soul appears to him by successive
revelations, and is frequently obscured. It is from a study
of these alternations that we can alone hope to discover,
even dimly, what seems right and what seems wrong to this
veiled prophet of ourself.
All that is in the man in the larger sense, what we call
impression as well as what we call intuition, so far as my
argument looks, we must accept. It is not wrong to desire
food, or exercise, or beautiful surroundings, or the love of
sex, or interest which is the food of the mind. All these
are craved; all these should be craved; to none of these in