|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne by Robert Louis Stevenson:
difficulty as to my reception. Modestine was led away by a layman
to the stables, and I and my pack were received into Our Lady of
FATHER MICHAEL, a pleasant, fresh-faced, smiling man, perhaps of
thirty-five, took me to the pantry, and gave me a glass of liqueur
to stay me until dinner. We had some talk, or rather I should say
he listened to my prattle indulgently enough, but with an
abstracted air, like a spirit with a thing of clay. And truly,
when I remember that I descanted principally on my appetite, and
that it must have been by that time more than eighteen hours since
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Common Sense by Thomas Paine:
whom she denominates, "rebellious subjects," for terms of accommodation.
It is our delaying it that encourages her to hope for conquest, and our
backwardness tends only to prolong the war. As we have, without any good
effect therefrom, withheld our trade to obtain a redress of our grievances,
let us now try the alternative, by independantly redressing them ourselves,
and then offering to open the trade. The mercantile and reasonable part
in England, will be still with us; because, peace with trade, is preferable
to war without it. And if this offer be not accepted, other courts
may be applied to.
On these grounds I rest the matter. And as no offer hath
yet been made to refute the doctrine contained in the former
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Bride of Lammermoor by Walter Scott:
compliment, to show how much the guests esteemed the merits of
their noble host, how little they thought of the inconveniences
with which they were surrounded. I am not sure whether the pride
of being found to outbalance, in virtue of his own personal
merit, all the disadvantages of fortune, did not make as
favourable an impression upon the haughty heart of the Master of
Ravenswood as the conversation of the father and the beauty of
The hour of repose arrived. The Keeper and his daughter retired
to their apartments, which were "decored" more properly than
could have been anticipated. In making the necessary
The Bride of Lammermoor
|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 Almayer's Folly by Joseph Conrad:
disappearance they heard the war canoe leave the landing-place in
the swish of the numerous paddles dipped in the water together.
Almost at the same time Ali came up from the riverside, two
paddles on his shoulder.
"Our canoe is hidden up the creek, Tuan Almayer," he said, "in
the dense bush where the forest comes down to the water. I took
it there because I heard from Babalatchi's paddlers that the
white men are coming here."
"Wait for me there," said Almayer, "but keep the canoe hidden."
He remained silent, listening to Ali's footsteps, then turned to