|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Barlaam and Ioasaph by St. John of Damascus:
say, but he dwelt in a waste howling wilderness in the land of
Senaar, and had been perfected through the grace of the
priesthood. Barlaam was this elder's name. He, learning by
divine revelation the state of the king's son, left the desert
and returned to the world. Changing his habit, he put on lay
attire, and, embarking on ship board, arrived at the seat of the
empire of the Indians. Disguised as a merchant man, he entered
the city, where was the palace of the king's son. There he
tarried many days, and enquired diligently concerning the
prince's affairs, and those that had access to him. Learning
that the tutor, of whom we have spoken, was the prince's most
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Aspern Papers by Henry James:
think we have any weak points?"
"That's exactly what I'm asking. You would only have to mention
them for me to respect them religiously."
She looked at me, at this, with that air of timid but candid
and even gratified curiosity with which she had confronted me
from the first; and then she said, "There is nothing to tell.
We are terribly quiet. I don't know how the days pass.
We have no life."
"I wish I might think that I should bring you a little."
"Oh, we know what we want," she went on. "It's all right."
There were various things I desired to ask her: how in the world
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from An Historical Mystery by Honore de Balzac:
Madame d'Hauteserre. "Rely upon me," he whispered to the old lady. "I
am in your interests. I sent the mayor to warn you. Distrust my
colleague and look to me. I can save every one of you."
"But what is it all about?" said Mademoiselle Goujet.
"A matter of life and death; you must know that," replied Corentin.
Madame d'Hauteserre fainted. To Mademoiselle Goujet's great
astonishment and Corentin's disappointment, Laurence's room was empty.
Certain that no one could have escaped from the park or the chateau,
for all the issues were guarded, Corentin stationed a gendarme in
every room and ordered others to search the farm buildings, stables,
and sheds. Then he returned to the salon, where Durieu and his wife
|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 The Patchwork Girl of Oz by L. Frank Baum:
off was the grim forest, which completely
Unc knocked at the door of the house and
a chubby, pleasant-faced woman, dressed all in
blue, opened it and greeted the visitors with a
"Ah," said Ojo; "you must be Dame Margolotte,
the good wife of Dr. Pipt."
"I am, my dear, and all strangers are welcome
to my home."
"May we see the famous Magician, Madam?"
The Patchwork Girl of Oz