|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Pierre Grassou by Honore de Balzac:
three occupied a great position and were, in fact, at the head of the
art movement, were filled with pity for the perseverance and the
poverty of their old friend; and they caused to be admitted into the
grand salon of the Exhibition, a picture by Fougeres. This picture,
powerful in interest but derived from Vigneron as to sentiment and
from Dubufe's first manner as to execution, represented a young man in
prison, whose hair was being cut around the nape of the neck. On one
side was a priest, on the other two women, one old, one young, in
tears. A sheriff's clerk was reading aloud a document. On a wretched
table was a meal, untouched. The light came in through the bars of a
window near the ceiling. It was a picture fit to make the bourgeois
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Inaugural Address by John F. Kennedy:
final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded,
each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony
to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered
the call to service surround the globe. Now the trumpet summons us again. . .
not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need. . .not as a call to battle. . .
though embattled we are. . .but a call to bear the burden of a long
twilight struggle. . .year in and year out, rejoicing in hope,
patient in tribulation. . .a struggle against the common enemies of man:
tyranny. . .poverty. . .disease. . .and war itself. Can we forge against
these enemies a grand and global alliance. . .North and South. . .
East and West. . .that can assure a more fruitful life for all mankind?
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Christ in Flanders by Honore de Balzac:
shore, flung off the chain, ran along the side of the boat, and took
up his position at the helm. He looked at the sky, and as soon as they
were out in the open sea, he shouted to the men: "Pull away, pull with
all your might! The sea is smiling at a squall, the witch! I can feel
the swell by the way the rudder works, and the storm in my wounds."
The nautical phrases, unintelligible to ears unused to the sound of
the sea, seemed to put fresh energy into the oars; they kept time
together, the rhythm of the movement was still even and steady, but
quite unlike the previous manner of rowing; it was as if a cantering
horse had broken into a gallop. The gay company seated in the stern
amused themselves by watching the brawny arms, the tanned faces, and
|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 Dreams by Olive Schreiner:
mouths were red. Sometimes, as the dancers whirled, they overturned a
vessel, and their garments were bespattered. Children sat upon the floor
with great bowls of wine, and swam rose-leaves on it, for boats. They put
their hands in the wine and blew large red bubbles.
And higher and higher grew the revels, and wilder the dancing, and louder
and louder the singing. But here and there among the revellers were those
who did not revel. I saw that at the tables here and there were men who
sat with their elbows on the board and hands shading their eyes; they
looked into the wine-cup beneath them, and did not drink. And when one
touched them lightly on the shoulder, bidding them to rise and dance and
sing, they started, and then looked down, and sat there watching the wine