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Was Grok being stupid, or was he that smart?

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  • Was Grok being stupid, or was he that smart?

    I was watching a show on the History Channel several weeks ago and they were talking about the evolution of man and what we have discovered about human evolution. Something that stuck with me since I watched it was what they referred to as "the most important step that humans ever took".

    It was finding fire. The narrator expounded that humans were the first animals that did not run away from (and fear) fire. In fact, they still are the only animals in history that are not weary of and accepting fire. That in braving the unknown and utilizing fire, we most assuredly guaranteed our eventual survival. It allowed us to keep predators away at night, smoke meat so it could be stored longer, and enjoy a bit of warmth in winter.

    I agree that this makes sense, but the thought that has continually crept in my head since I watched it was, "Did they become masters of fire because they were curious and/or stupid (which can equate to a bad habit to have when survival is part of the game), or were they at a level of understanding where they knew what they were getting themselves into?"

    Of course, I am sure some Grok or Grokette didn't come along and say, "Hey, if we take this burning tree branch from lightning and keep it going, we will live safely and become rulers of the planet." Looking back now, it's easy to say it was a smart idea to approach a fire and learn to use it. But I can also understand how only a crazy person can walk up to such an amazing thing as fire and walk right up to it and see how it works.

    Did we, as humans, come to rule the top of the food chain because we used to be the dumb animals near the bottom of it and we got lucky?
    Last edited by cwhitson; 12-07-2011, 09:05 AM. Reason: Grammar/misspellings

  • #2
    I think having thumbs gave us an edge -

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    • #3
      Huh? You don't have to be *right next* to a fire to know how it works.

      They examined, took risks, tried, and tested. They passed down knowledge little by little until a useful theory was formed, and finally they conquered fire.

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      • #4
        Ummm God created us as we are now. Intelligent and masters of our world. I can't force you to believe it too, but it's the truth.
        Making adventure out of this thing called life

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        • #5
          Which God created us? Zeus, Ganesh, Buddha, Allah, Yaweh, etc.?

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          • #6
            You are a bit misguided in your representation of what God may or may not have created. Assuming your theory, all humans, at birth, would have the ability to understand applied physics, perform advanced mathematical calculations without a computer, and win a NASCAR race. If your theory were true, everything that man has created would have been invented at the exact same time, without a gradual learning curve.

            You know more today than you did a year ago (I hope). So it is quite comprehensible to believe that humans, over time, gradually learned more and more as well. Please provide evidence and an open mind in any further posts. This is a serious discussion about the human nature at the time fire was found by our ancestors.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Marnee View Post
              Huh? You don't have to be *right next* to a fire to know how it works.

              They examined, took risks, tried, and tested. They passed down knowledge little by little until a useful theory was formed, and finally they conquered fire.
              I know I don't. We are talking about ancient man, who had never seen fire before. Every animal up to that time, and since, has avoided fire. We are exploring the mental status of mans ability to reason when there had been no such experience of fire. At most, Grok would have understood that fire destroys things and is a dangerous power. So what was he thinking when he reached for a burning object. Was he being stupid, or was he being inventive? There may not be a right or wrong answer, but I feel as if you mis-understood the post. You have to remove yourself and your opinions from the equation. Thinking of ruling over fire with a modern brain is unfair as, yes, we all have an understanding of it no matter how close we are to it. But Grok did not.

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              • #8
                It was curiousity. What makes us Human is our need to learn new stuff. We explore, expiriment and play with things that can hurt us sometimes but we tend to learn and pass on what we learn through our ability to communicate. Every generation pushing a little further learning a bit more. Fire may not have been conquered by an individual, it may have taken many generations to learn about it, how it works, how to control it and once a group had it figured out, our ability to pass this knowledge on through our specialized ability to communicate (first by stories then by drawings, then by writing) made the knowledge immortal. Our big brains and vocalizations were the original Information technology.
                Integrity is what we do when nobody's watching.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by alg2435 View Post
                  Ummm God created us as we are now. Intelligent and masters of our world. I can't force you to believe it too, but it's the truth.
                  The curious man is asking question
                  The scientist is looking for answers
                  The idiot thinks he already has the truth.....

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                  • #10
                    God made evolution. Deal with it.
                    Crohn's, doing SCD

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by alg2435 View Post
                      Ummm God created us as we are now. Intelligent and masters of our world. I can't force you to believe it too, but it's the truth.
                      Isnt this perfect proof for the theory of evolution? I mean the brain of this person is obviously still in its original monkeyform.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Nekron View Post
                        Isnt this perfect proof for the theory of evolution? I mean the brain of this person is obviously still in its original monkeyform.
                        Aww you guys are so sweet.
                        Making adventure out of this thing called life

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                        • #13
                          One of the first ways man would have cottoned on to the benefits of fire is from the results of a bushfire. If you stand near the front of one that's coming you can kill all sorts of things running from it. Secondly if you walk around after the fire you can pick up all sorts of cooked/roasted creatures and amazingly the flesh falls of them much easier and is easier to eat.

                          Wouldn't be too much of a stretch to throw some of the freshly caught animals onto still smoldering coals to soften them up a bit too.

                          As to avoiding being killed by bushfire. Have you ever noticed how when animals run away when frightened they always run directly away in the same direction you are going. This puts the greatest distance between them and you which in case you are intending to throw something at them increases their chances greatly.

                          I suspect humans were smart enough to realize that that strategy may not be the most effective to avoid a bushfire which will eventually catch up with you again if you keep traveling in the direction it is going. We're smart enough to escape across the face of the fire to get out of it's path or find water to jump into. Which makes it not as scary as it would for animals.
                          Last edited by thanatos; 12-07-2011, 12:18 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by cwhitson View Post
                            You are a bit misguided in your representation of what God may or may not have created. Assuming your theory, all humans, at birth, would have the ability to understand applied physics, perform advanced mathematical calculations without a computer, and win a NASCAR race. If your theory were true, everything that man has created would have been invented at the exact same time, without a gradual learning curve.

                            You know more today than you did a year ago (I hope). So it is quite comprehensible to believe that humans, over time, gradually learned more and more as well. Please provide evidence and an open mind in any further posts. This is a serious discussion about the human nature at the time fire was found by our ancestors.
                            You are so correct. Humans have built knowledge upon knowledge, and discovery upon discovery (and that's pretty cool). I'm just saying that we were never 'dumb animals'.
                            Making adventure out of this thing called life

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                            • #15
                              alg2435, I'm impressed by your forwardness and the fact you have a level enough head to stick around. You knew when you posted about God you'd be harassed, and that's always confounded me. Will God reward us for intentionally mentioning him in places where the persecution comes easy? But I do believe God made the world, I just don't see why we can't all be right at the same time. God made the original animals, then they adapted with the changing earth. As for Man, we know we are inbred so we did change after the flood, and who did Cain and Abel marry? Something related?
                              Crohn's, doing SCD

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