|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Blue Flower by Henry van Dyke:
him but to go out into the wild woods and preach to the
Through the forests of Hesse and Thuringia, and along the
borders of Saxony, he had wandered for years, with a handful
of companions, sleeping under the trees, crossing mountains
and marshes, now here, now there, never satisfied with ease
and comfort, always in love with hardship and danger.
What a man he was! Fair and slight, but straight as a
spear and strong as an oaken staff. His face was still young; the
smooth skin was bronzed by wind and sun. His gray eyes, clean
and kind, flashed like fire when he spoke of his adventures, and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Life in the Iron-Mills by Rebecca Davis:
were growing more noisy, shouting, as they had to do, to be
heard over the deep clamor of the mills. Suddenly they grew
less boisterous,--at the far end, entirely silent. Something
unusual had happened. After a moment, the silence came nearer;
the men stopped their jeers and drunken choruses. Deborah,
stupidly lifting up her head, saw the cause of the quiet. A
group of five or six men were slowly approaching, stopping to
examine each furnace as they came. Visitors often came to see
the mills after night: except by growing less noisy, the men
took no notice of them. The furnace where Wolfe worked was near
the bounds of the works; they halted there hot and tired: a
Life in the Iron-Mills
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Expression of Emotion in Man and Animals by Charles Darwin:
From the principle of inheritance it is not surprising that
persons born blind should blush. We can understand why the young
are much more affected than the old, and women more than men;
and why the opposite sexes especially excite each other's blushes.
It becomes obvious why personal remarks should be particularly liable
to cause blushing, and why the most powerful of all the causes is shyness;
for shyness relates to the presence and opinion of others, and the shy
are always more or less self-conscious. With respect to real shame
from moral delinquencies, we can perceive why it is not guilt,
but the thought that others think us guilty, which raises a blush.
A man reflecting on a crime committed in solitude, and stung by
Expression of Emotion in Man and Animals
|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 Common Sense by Thomas Paine:
temper of a nation, when nothing but personal matters are the ground
of a quarrel, that Henry was taken in triumph from a prison to a palace,
and Edward obliged to fly from a palace to a foreign land; yet,
as sudden transitions of temper are seldom lasting, Henry in his turn
was driven from the throne, and Edward recalled to succeed him.
The parliament always following the strongest side.
This contest began in the reign of Henry the Sixth, and was not entirely
extinguished till Henry the Seventh, in whom the families were united.
Including a period of 67 years, viz. from 1422 to 1489.
In short, monarchy and succession have laid (not this or that kingdom only)
but the world in blood and ashes. Tis a form of government which the word