|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Astoria by Washington Irving:
and country, yearly ejected from the bosom of society into the
wilderness. We are contributing incessantly to swell this
singular and heterogeneous cloud of wild population that is to
hang about our frontier, by the transfer of whole tribes from the
east of the Mississippi to the great wastes of the far West. Many
of these bear with them the smart of real or fancied injuries;
many consider themselves expatriated beings, wrongfully exiled
from their hereditary homes, and the sepulchres of their fathers,
and cherish a deep and abiding animosity against the race that
has dispossessed them. Some may gradually become pastoral hordes,
like those rude and migratory people, half shepherd, half
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Eugenie Grandet by Honore de Balzac:
m-m-many, but I have never s-s-signed one. I d-d-don't understand such
things. I have h-h-heard say that n-n-notes c-c-can be b-b-bought up."
"Of course," said the president. "Notes can be bought in the market,
less so much per cent. Don't you understand?"
Grandet made an ear-trumpet of his hand, and the president repeated
"Well, then," replied the man, "there's s-s-something to be g-g-got
out of it? I k-know n-nothing at my age about such th-th-things. I
l-l-live here and l-l-look after the v-v-vines. The vines g-g-grow,
and it's the w-w-wine that p-p-pays. L-l-look after the v-v-vintage,
t-t-that's my r-r-rule. My c-c-chief interests are at Froidfond. I
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Bronte Sisters:
'That seems comfortable,' continued he, without noticing my words;
'and while you do it, the other fancies fade away - but this only
strengthens. - Go on - go on, till it vanishes, too. I can't stand
such a mania as this; it would kill me!'
'It never will vanish,' said I, distinctly, 'for it is the truth!'
'The truth!' he cried, starting, as if an asp had stung him. 'You
don't mean to say that you are really she?'
'I do; but you needn't shrink away from me, as if I were your
greatest enemy: I am come to take care of you, and do what none of
them would do.'
'For God's sake, don't torment me now!' cried he in pitiable
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
|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 Roads of Destiny by O. Henry:
for? Look at you, all decent and unriotous, and only fit to sit on
juries and mend the wood-house door. You was a man once. I have
hostility for all such acts. Why don't you go in the house and count
the tidies or set the clock, and not stand out here in the atmosphere?
A jack-rabbit might come along and bite you.'
"'Now, Buck,' says Perry, speaking mild, and some sorrowful, 'you
don't understand. A married man has got to be different. He feels
different from a tough old cloudburst like you. It's sinful to waste
time pulling up towns just to look at their roots, and playing faro
and looking upon red liquor, and such restless policies as them.'
"'There was a time,' I says, and I expect I sighed when I mentioned