|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Works of Samuel Johnson by Samuel Johnson:
dim the lustre of others, or to interrupt any in the
enjoyment of themselves; he is no man's rival, and,
therefore, may be every man's friend.
The opinion which a man entertains of himself
ought to be distinguished, in order to an accurate
discussion of this question, as it relates to persons
or to things. To think highly of ourselves in
comparison with others, to assume by our own authority
that precedence which none is willing to grant, must
be always invidious and offensive; but to rate our
powers high in proportion to things, and imagine
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Early Short Fiction of Edith Wharton by Edith Wharton:
herself saying. Her room? Her house? She could almost hear the
walls laugh back at her.
She stood up, a dull ache in every bone. The silence of the room
frightened her. She remembered, now, having heard the front door
close a long time ago: the sound suddenly re-echoed through her
brain. Her husband must have left the house, then--her HUSBAND?
She no longer knew in what terms to think: the simplest phrases
had a poisoned edge. She sank back into her chair, overcome by a
strange weakness. The clock struck ten--it was only ten o'clock!
Suddenly she remembered that she had not ordered dinner . . . or
were they dining out that evening? DINNER--DINING OUT--the old
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Marriage Contract by Honore de Balzac:
"Mother, what am I to do to prevent such misfortunes?" cried Natalie.
"I have never seen you so beautiful as you are now," replied her
mother. "Be a little coquettish, and all is well."
Madame Evangelista left Natalie to her thoughts, and went to arrange
her own toilet in such a way that would bear comparison with that of
her daughter. If Natalie ought to make herself attractive to Paul she
ought, none the less, to inflame the ardor of her champion Solonet.
The mother and daughter were therefore under arms when Paul arrived,
bearing the bouquet which for the last few months he had daily offered
to his love. All three conversed pleasantly while awaiting the arrival
of the notaries.
|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 Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe:
more labour upon me on his account than I had for myself; and that
he would work the harder for me if I would tell him what to do.
This was the pleasantest year of all the life I led in this place.
Friday began to talk pretty well, and understand the names of
almost everything I had occasion to call for, and of every place I
had to send him to, and talked a great deal to me; so that, in
short, I began now to have some use for my tongue again, which,
indeed, I had very little occasion for before. Besides the
pleasure of talking to him, I had a singular satisfaction in the
fellow himself: his simple, unfeigned honesty appeared to me more
and more every day, and I began really to love the creature; and on