|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Laches by Plato:
LACHES: Why, Socrates, what else can a man say?
SOCRATES: Nothing, if that be what he thinks.
LACHES: But that is what I do think.
SOCRATES: And yet men who thus run risks and endure are foolish, Laches,
in comparison of those who do the same things, having the skill to do them.
LACHES: That is true.
SOCRATES: But foolish boldness and endurance appeared before to be base
and hurtful to us.
LACHES: Quite true.
SOCRATES: Whereas courage was acknowledged to be a noble quality.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Flower Fables by Louisa May Alcott:
were formed of crimson roses, amid whose leaves sat little Elves,
making sweet music on their harps. When they saw Bud, they gathered
round her, and led her through the flower-wreathed arches to a group
of the most beautiful Fairies, who were gathered about a stately lily,
in whose fragrant cup sat one whose purple robe and glittering crown
told she was their Queen.
Bud knelt before her, and, while tears streamed down her little face,
she told her errand, and pleaded earnestly that the exiled Fairies
might be forgiven, and not be left to pine far from their friends and
kindred. And as she prayed, many wept with her; and when she ceased,
and waited for her answer, many knelt beside her, praying forgiveness
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Brother of Daphne by Dornford Yates:
"Possibly some idle banter-"
"I knew it," said Daphne. If this is how you begin, we shan't
get out of Munich alive."
Why we had chosen Munich is not very easy to tell. Of course,
we ought to have gone to Biarritz and taken the car, but they
wouldn't have that. Everybody had wanted to go to a different
place. Berry's choice was Minsk, because, he said, he wanted to
rub up his Hebrew. Such a suggestion is characteristic of Berry.
Then Munich was mentioned, and as no one had seemed very keen, no
one had taken the trouble to be very rude about it.
Consequently, Munich won. A day or two after our arrival, one of
The Brother of Daphne
|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 The Lesser Bourgeoisie by Honore de Balzac:
her. For my part, I think this devoted friend is an intriguing
creature, who scents money, and is scheming for some future gain."
"Ah ca!" said Minard, "then you don't know the original cause of the
intimacy between Madame la Comtesse de Godollo and the Thuilliers?"
"She is a tenant in their house; she occupies the entresol beneath
"True, but there's something more than that in it. Zelie, my wife,
heard it from Josephine, who wanted, lately, to enter our service; the
matter came to nothing, for Francoise, our woman, who thought of
marrying, changed her mind. You must know, fair lady, that it was
solely Madame de Godollo who brought about the emigration of the