|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Silverado Squatters by Robert Louis Stevenson:
good to taste the air; good to mark the dawning of the stars,
as they increased their glittering company; good, too, to
gather stones, and send them crashing down the chute, a wave
of light. It seemed, in some way, the reward and the
fulfilment of the day. So it is when men dwell in the open
air; it is one of the simple pleasures that we lose by living
cribbed and covered in a house, that, though the coming of
the day is still the most inspiriting, yet day's departure,
also, and the return of night refresh, renew, and quiet us;
and in the pastures of the dusk we stand, like cattle,
exulting in the absence of the load.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift:
good price?" He, who apprehended I could not live a month, was
ready enough to part with me, and demanded a thousand pieces of
gold, which were ordered him on the spot, each piece being about
the bigness of eight hundred moidores; but allowing for the
proportion of all things between that country and Europe, and the
high price of gold among them, was hardly so great a sum as a
thousand guineas would be in England. I then said to the queen,
"since I was now her majesty's most humble creature and vassal, I
must beg the favour, that Glumdalclitch, who had always tended me
with so much care and kindness, and understood to do it so well,
might be admitted into her service, and continue to be my nurse
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Alexander's Bridge by Willa Cather:
Bartley shook his head and smiled drolly.
"Since when have you been interested in
bridges? Or have you learned to be interested
in everything? And is that a part of success?"
"Why, how absurd! As if I were not
always interested!" Hilda exclaimed.
"Well, I think we won't talk about bridges here,
at any rate." Bartley looked down at the toe
of her yellow slipper which was tapping the rug
impatiently under the hem of her gown.
|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 Father Goriot by Honore de Balzac:
the Loire meets, in a southern temperament, with the guile of the
North, the character is complete, and such a man will gain (and
keep) the crown of Sweden.
Rastignac, therefore, could not stand the fire from Vautrin's
batteries for long without discovering whether this was a friend
or a foe. He felt as if this strange being was reading his inmost
soul, and dissecting his feelings, while Vautrin himself was so
close and secretive that he seemed to have something of the
profound and unmoved serenity of a sphinx, seeing and hearing all
things and saying nothing. Eugene, conscious of that money in his
pocket, grew rebellious.