|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Ball at Sceaux by Honore de Balzac:
fine fortune, I know what such a choice requires of me. Love gives
everything," he added lightly, "but only to lovers. Once married, they
need something more than the vault of heaven and the carpet of a
"He is rich," she reflected. "As to titles, perhaps he only wants to
try me. He has been told that I am mad about titles, and bent on
marrying none but a peer's son. My priggish sisters have played me
that trick."--"I assure you, monsieur," she said aloud, "that I have
had very extravagant ideas about life and the world; but now," she
added pointedly, looking at him in a perfectly distracting way, "I
know where true riches are to be found for a wife."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy:
of such a husband as Wildeve, there could be no doubt
that for the moment she was distracted and horrified
by the blow. As for himself, not being privileged to go
to her and comfort her, he saw no reason for waiting
longer in a house where he remained only as a stranger.
He returned across the heath to his van. The fire was
not yet out, and everything remained as he had left it.
Venn now bethought himself of his clothes, which were
saturated with water to the weight of lead. He changed them,
spread them before the fire, and lay down to sleep.
But it was more than he could do to rest here while excited
Return of the Native
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Bureaucracy by Honore de Balzac:
and down the room, his fat face contracted with unaccustomed thought.
"He is always so when he dines at the ministry," remarked Madame
Saillard; "happily, it is only twice a year, or he'd die of it.
Saillard was never made to be in the government-- Well, now, I do
hope, Saillard," she continued in a loud tone, "that you are not going
to keep on those silk breeches and that handsome coat. Go and take
them off; don't wear them at home, my man."
"Your father has something on his mind," said Baudoyer to his wife,
when the cashier was in his bedroom, undressing without any fire.
"Perhaps Monsieur de la Billardiere is dead," said Elisabeth, simply;
"and as he is anxious you should have the place, it worries him."
|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 Tragedy of Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain:
when he answered:
"Yes, Mother, I know, now, that I am reformed--and permanently.
Permanently--and beyond the reach of any human temptation."
"Den g'long home en begin!"
The Robber Robbed
Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits.
--Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar
Behold, the fool saith, "Put not all thine eggs in the one basket"--
which is but a manner of saying, "Scatter your money and
your attention"; but the wise man saith, "Put all your eggs in