|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Tao Teh King by Lao-tze:
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
on itself. When the work is done, and one's name is becoming
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Alexander's Bridge by Willa Cather:
the feeling of letting himself go with the
crowd. He shuddered and looked about him
at the poor unconscious companions of his
journey, unkempt and travel-stained, now
doubled in unlovely attitudes, who had come
to stand to him for the ugliness he had
brought into the world.
And those boys back there, beginning it
all just as he had begun it; he wished he
could promise them better luck. Ah, if one
could promise any one better luck, if one