|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu by Sax Rohmer:
Smith continued. "For once in a way, Inspector, Dr. Fu-Manchu has employed
an ally which even his giant will was incapable entirely to subjugate.
What blind force--what terrific agent of death--had he confined
in that sarcophagus!"
"You think this is the work of Fu-Manchu?" I said.
"If you are correct, his power indeed is more than human."
Something in my voice, I suppose, brought Smith right about.
He surveyed me curiously.
"Can you doubt it? The presence of a concealed Chinaman surely
is sufficient. Kwee, I feel assured, was one of the murder group,
though probably he had only recently entered that mysterious service.
The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Adieu by Honore de Balzac:
crackling of the flames, the distant murmur of the camps, and the
blows of the sabre given to what remained of Bichette in search of her
tenderest morsels. A few miserable creatures, perhaps more weary than
the rest, were sleeping; when one of their number rolled into the fire
no one attempted to help him out. These stern logicians argued that if
he were not dead his burns would warn him to find a safer place. If
the poor wretch waked in the flames and perished, no one cared. Two or
three soldiers looked at each other to justify their own indifference
by that of others. Twice this scene had taken place before the eyes of
the countess, who said nothing. When the various pieces of Bichette,
placed here and there upon the embers, were sufficiently broiled, each
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum:
"If you see any house, or any place where we can pass the
night," she said, "you must tell me; for it is very uncomfortable
walking in the dark."
Soon after the Scarecrow stopped.
"I see a little cottage at the right of us," he said,
"built of logs and branches. Shall we go there?"
"Yes, indeed," answered the child. "I am all tired out."
So the Scarecrow led her through the trees until they reached
the cottage, and Dorothy entered and found a bed of dried leaves
in one corner. She lay down at once, and with Toto beside her
soon fell into a sound sleep. The Scarecrow, who was never tired,
The Wizard of Oz
|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 Apology by Plato:
any more, and that if you are caught doing so again you shall die;--if this
was the condition on which you let me go, I should reply: Men of Athens, I
honour and love you; but I shall obey God rather than you, and while I have
life and strength I shall never cease from the practice and teaching of
philosophy, exhorting any one whom I meet and saying to him after my
manner: You, my friend,--a citizen of the great and mighty and wise city
of Athens,--are you not ashamed of heaping up the greatest amount of money
and honour and reputation, and caring so little about wisdom and truth and
the greatest improvement of the soul, which you never regard or heed at
all? And if the person with whom I am arguing, says: Yes, but I do care;
then I do not leave him or let him go at once; but I proceed to interrogate