The First Fires


There were massive thunderstorms last night in the Indianapolis area. This morning there were multiple houses on fire and the common response seems to have been shock. It's almost as though we forgot that lightning can generate fire. I suppose that's okay. After all, in modern America, we are dramatically unaccustomed to being subject to the whims of nature.


The storm and aftermath made me wonder again about the initial human relationship to fire. I have lots of questions but no answers…


How many times have people discovered fire?

What was the first source of ‘controlled’ fire? Was it lightning; was it lava?

Was it an accident?

How long ago did it happen?

Were the people who found it hailed or cursed?

Did those individuals become powerful as a result?

Did it happen multiple times in the same place or in different places?

Have other animals ever ‘controlled’ fire?

If not, when will it happen?


Lots of questions but no answers.




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