|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Margret Howth: A Story of To-day by Rebecca Harding Davis:
on the text, as she passed in and out.
If she had risen to the full level of Joel's views, she might
have considered these views tinctured with radicalism, as they
consisted in the propriety of the immediate "impinging of the
President." Besides, (Joel was a good-natured man, too, merciful
to his beast,) Nero-like, he wished, with the tiger drop of blood
that lies hid in everybody's heart, that the few millions who
differed with himself and the "Gazette" had but one neck for
their more convenient hanging, "It's all that'll save the
kentry," he said, and believed it, too.
If Margret fell suddenly from the peak of outlook on life to the
Margret Howth: A Story of To-day
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Protagoras by Plato:
you, who are under the mistaken impression that ignorance is not the cause,
and that the art of which I am speaking cannot be taught, neither go
yourselves, nor send your children, to the Sophists, who are the teachers
of these things--you take care of your money and give them none; and the
result is, that you are the worse off both in public and private life:--Let
us suppose this to be our answer to the world in general: And now I should
like to ask you, Hippias, and you, Prodicus, as well as Protagoras (for the
argument is to be yours as well as ours), whether you think that I am
speaking the truth or not?
They all thought that what I said was entirely true.
Then you agree, I said, that the pleasant is the good, and the painful
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Malbone: An Oldport Romance by Thomas Wentworth Higginson:
am I to do? It was not for money that I married him,--that you
know very well; I cared no more for his money than for himself.
I thought it was the only way to save Hope. She has been very
good to me, and perhaps I should love her, if I could love
anybody. Now I have done what will only make more misery, for I
cannot bear it. Philip, I am alone in this wide world, except
for you. Tell me what to do. I will haunt you till you die,
unless you tell me. Answer this, or I will write again."
Terrified by this letter, absolutely powerless to guide the
life with which he had so desperately entangled himself, Philip
let one day pass without answering, and that evening he found
|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 Animal Farm by George Orwell:
not feel so hopeful about it as they had felt before. They were always
cold, and usually hungry as well. Only Boxer and Clover never lost heart.
Squealer made excellent speeches on the joy of service and the dignity of
labour, but the other animals found more inspiration in Boxer's strength
and his never-failing cry of "I will work harder!"
In January food fell short. The corn ration was drastically reduced, and
it was announced that an extra potato ration would be issued to make up
for it. Then it was discovered that the greater part of the potato crop
had been frosted in the clamps, which had not been covered thickly enough.
The potatoes had become soft and discoloured, and only a few were edible.
For days at a time the animals had nothing to eat but chaff and mangels.