Response from Joe Katzman
The thing that strikes me most forcibly about Prometheus is that he KNOWS. He knows what is to happen to him, but chooses to go ahead and do it anyway. Interesting that Dialogue #3 should take place in the Netherlands, a country which covered itself with such honor in the Second World War. The Nazis may have held them chained, but a very, very great number of them refused to cooperate in the persecution of the Nazis' chosen victims others and in fact helped many to safety. Those who did so knew that to be caught meant almost certain death, but there was a fire inside them that made them do it anyway.
It's clear in Thoreau and other sources that the "fire" Prometheus brings is a creative fire. For me, however, the most remarkable fire he brings is the one that burns inside him, the light that will not let him turn aside from those who need his gifts - whatever the cost may be. It is a fire of righteousness, and of determination. You can see it in the paintings, if you look. And it is that fire which must also come down to humanity from their great benefactor, if the gift he gave is not to consume them utterly in the end.