|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Sophist by Plato:
either of them.
THEAETETUS: Why not?
STRANGER: Because motion would be at rest and rest in motion, for either
of them, being predicated of both, will compel the other to change into the
opposite of its own nature, because partaking of its opposite.
THEAETETUS: Quite true.
STRANGER: Yet they surely both partake of the same and of the other?
STRANGER: Then we must not assert that motion, any more than rest, is
either the same or the other.
THEAETETUS: No; we must not.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg by Mark Twain:
strong appetites for money; each had bought a great tract of land,
with a purpose; there was going to be a new railway, and each wanted
to be in the Legislature and help locate the route to his own
advantage; a single vote might make the decision, and with it two or
three fortunes. The stake was large, and Harkness was a daring
speculator. He was sitting close to the stranger. He leaned over
while one or another of the other Symbols was entertaining the house
with protests and appeals, and asked, in a whisper,
"What is your price for the sack?"
"Forty thousand dollars."
"I'll give you twenty."
The Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from An Historical Mystery by Honore de Balzac:
powerful assistance in the great uncertainty which affected the
position of all magistrates of the Empire. Just at this time
Cambaceres, as arch-chancellor, and Regnier, chief justice, were
preparing to organize /tribunaux de premiere instance/ (lower civil
courts), imperial courts, and a court of appeal or supreme court. They
were agitating the question of a legal garb or costume; to which
Napoleon attached, and very justly, so much importance in all official
stations; and they were also inquiring into the character of the
persons composing the magistracy. Naturally, therefore, the officials
of the department of the Aube considered they could have no better
recommendation than to give proofs of their zeal in the matter of the
|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 Under the Red Robe by Stanley Weyman:
checks. Gradually the flush melted into a fierce smile.
'Yes, yes, why not?' she repeated between her teeth. 'Why not?'
She had her hand on my arm, and I felt her fingers tighten until
I could have winced. 'Why not? So you planned this--for us,
'But can you?'
'Safely,' I said; then, muttering to her to take her sister
upstairs, I turned towards the garden. My foot was already on
the threshold, and I was composing my face to meet the enemy,
when I heard a movement behind me. The next moment her hand was