The tattwas are focusing symbols for the projection of the elemental energy of the quarter. They derive from the eastern tradition, but have been adapted since the time of the Golden Dawn.
The tattwa symbols are
"Be thou, therefore, prompt and active as the Sylphs, but avoid frivolity and caprice. Be energetic and strong as the Salamanders but avoid irritability and ferocity. Be flexible and attentive to images like the Undines, but avoid idleness and changeability. Be laborious and patient like the Gnomes, but avoid grossness and avarice. So shalt thou gradually develop the powers of thy soul, and fit thyself to command the spirits of the elements."