Medieval geomancers used to make a big deal about the elemental attributions of the lines of the figures, yet there is little about how these lines could make a difference to a reading.
Information is limited to the top line being fire, the following line being air, the third being water, and the last being earth. These follow the Corpus Hermetica, with fire being the highest level of spirit, air representing the mind, water being emotions and earth being the physical body.
One clue is in the Chinese iChing, where the lines change from one force thing to another. We would get similar information if a similar method were applied to the elements of a Geomancy reading.
In my book Star and Stone, I looked at the elements and said how two dots in a line represent ordered force, which has reached its full expression and started to decay toward chaos. A single dot in a line represents a chaotic force just beginning its journey towards being ordered.
Using this information, we can start to see a process that might not be clear in the rest of the chart.
So let us consider a boilerplate “Does he still love me” question. The court is left witness Laetitia, Right Witness Cauda Draconis and Conjuctio as the Judge. Usually, we would read this as a mixed set of witnesses and a good judge (conjunction is good for relationships). Looking closer, though, the Judge agrees with the right witness, and the court is, at best, average. So, let us see what is happening by looking at the elements.
Looking at what is happening to get Laetitia to Conjuctio by adding the left and right witnesses, we see that the fire line changes from evolving to ordered and decaying. The air and water lines have been renewed and are restarting. Earth is staying the same. You are looking at a case where the fire or spirit is going out of a relationship. What has replaced it is a more routine mental and emotional relationship, which is better at communication and emotions but has lost that spark that drew the couple together. The court might indicate that element is something the querent has noticed as “off.”
In another random court “should I take this job” question. The left witness is acquisitio, the right is Amissio, and the Judge is Via. This mixed reading has a positive and negative witness and an erratic or neutral judge. We can see why when looking at the elements. The fire line is reborn, indicating that the querant will feel the renewal of the new job. However, the air line is moving from a newly established order to a change, which means decay. They might find that the new job is unchallenging and similar to what they already did. The water line is changing from established order to something more chaotic. Emotionally, the job change will shake them up, and they will need to be aware of that. Materially, the situation is changing from beginning to completion and decay. With the result being via, we can tell the person that the job will bring about considerable change, which will only be partly good. They will feel they are on a different path but will probably not be intellectually challenged or benefit materially. Emotionally, they might feel renewed.
It is worth noting that the above is an example of a company compound, which Christopher Cattan said was terrible to see in a chart because it represented an eclipse of the moon.
What is interesting about elemental theory is that it explains one of the problems I had when understanding Cattan’s court charts. Logically, Puer plus Puella equals Conjuctio should have the same meaning as Puella plus Puer equals Conjuctio. But if you consult his charts, one is positive, and the other is negative. Conjuctio is neutral and will not wildly disagree or agree with either of these witnesses. However, when you notice the elements, you can see that the changes brought about by adding those two figures are wildly different.