|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Talisman by Walter Scott:
The most remarkable part of its history, perhaps, was that it so
especially escaped condemnation when the Church of Scotland chose
to impeach many other cures which savoured of the miraculous, as
occasioned by sorcery, and censured the appeal to them,
"excepting only that to the amulet, called the Lee-penny, to
which it had pleased God to annex certain healing virtues which
the Church did not presume to condemn." It still, as has been
said, exists, and its powers are sometimes resorted to. Of late,
they have been chiefly restricted to the cure of persons bitten
by mad dogs; and as the illness in such cases frequently arises
from imagination, there can be no reason for doubting that water
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Whirligigs by O. Henry:
after local colour. Now, there's nothing I would like
better than to drop in at the Kappa Delta Phi, but --
some other time!"
We said our farewells and boarded a home-bound car.
We had a rabbit on upper Broadway, and then I parted
with Rivington on a street corner.
"Well, anyhow," said he, braced and recovered, "it
couldn't have happened anywhere but in little old New
Which to say the least, was typical of Rivington.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Blix by Frank Norris:
incrusted, at the entrance of the Golden Gate. They turned its
angle, and there rolled the Pacific, a blue floor of shifting
water, stretching out there forever and forever over the curve of
the earth, over the shoulder of the world, with never a sail in
view and never a break from horizon to horizon.
They followed down the shore, sometimes upon the old and broken
flume that runs along the seaward face of the hills that rise from
the beach, or sometimes upon the beach itself, stepping from
bowlder to bowlder, or holding along at the edge of the water upon
reaches of white, hard sand.
|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 Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:
is a difference of sex. Let me intreat you to study the pure and
sentimental parts of the best French Romances;--it will really, Madam,
astonish you to see with what a variety of chaste expressions this
delicious sentiment, which I have the honour to speak of, is dress'd out.
I would sooner undertake to explain the hardest problem in geometry, than
pretend to account for it, that a gentleman of my father's great good
sense,--knowing, as the reader must have observed him, and curious too in
philosophy,--wise also in political reasoning,--and in polemical (as he
will find) no way ignorant,--could be capable of entertaining a notion in
his head, so out of the common track,--that I fear the reader, when I come