Firebenders, as its practitioners are known, are heirs to the pyrokinetic ability to create and control fire. There’s also an exclusive few also possess the ability to generate and manipulate lightning.
Based on the Chinese test of Jeong Jeong's wanted poster, the word "Firebending" is written as 制火朮 which roughly translates to "The Method of Controling Fire".
The dragons were the first firebenders. Firebending was taught to the ancient Sun Warriors. They were a symbol of nobility and art, but also express wings and the ability to breathe fire. Just a century ago, the Dragons populated the world, but during the reign of Fire Lord Sozin, he began a tradition of hunting Dragons for glory. Considered the ultimate Firebenders, if a dragon could be killed, the slayer became legendary and was awarded the honorary title "Dragon." In The Firebending Masters, you find out that Iroh (Dragon of the West) didn't kill the last dragon. He lied about his victory and their extinction in order to protect the great Dragons from being further hunted.
In The Firebending Masters, you find out that Iroh (Dragon of the West) didn't kill the last dragon. He lied about his victory and their extinction in order to protect the great Dragons from being further hunted.
Firebending moves are based mainly on the style of Northern Shaolin kung fu, but with a few techniques from Northern Seven Star Praying Mantis. These martial arts feature quick, successive, ferocious attacks that evoke the uncompromising danger of fire, best suited for a practitioner with high quality agility, flexibility, speed and endurance. Unlike other bending disciplines, firebending has few defensive moves aside from blocking and dodging, although master Firebenders are shown to be able to create walls of fire to absorb incoming attacks.
Firebending is the most aggressive of the four bending arts. Firebenders use concentrated barrages of fire to overwhelm opponents before striking a fatal blow. Swift, whirling kicks and punches generate diverse shapes for offensive attacks. Jabs and punches produce miniature fireballs and bursts of flame, while spinning kicks create blazing rings and arcs. When multiple Firebenders attack in tandem, their combined energy enables them to produce missiles of flame that can travel long distances. Various other moves include shooting jets of fire from the fingertips, creating daggers of flame, fiery lashes, and creating whirling pinwheels of flame. Avatar level Firebenders are capable of erupting volcanoes at will and manipulating lava and magma flows. Firebenders are also enabled to manipulate the distribution of heat and the capacity of their flame. Firebenders use their internal body heat as a source of their bending to create fire. This facet is in sharp contrast to the other bending arts, which manipulate already present representations of their element.
Firebenders can control the intensity of their bending, reflected in the color of the flames. Master Firebenders are skilled enough to create highly-efficient flames that look blue or light blue, with red and orange flames representing lesser forms of Firebending. Azula has demonstrated blue and light blue firebending (not to be confused with lightning).After contact with flammable items, blue fire reverts to a less intense state and changes to the more natural red and orange color as it begins to cool down. Blue fire also seems to possess more physical force and produce a concussive effect not seen with normal fire.
Firebending is the opposing bending art to Waterbending.
Blue firebending is a powerful and advanced technique. Blue fire naturally appears to be much hotter than the normal red and orange flames the bending art normally produces, and carries with it a concussive force. With blue fire, a Firebender is able to pulverize solid rock with compact fireballs and can cleanly slice or pierce through various other solid objects with fiery wisps. Azula is one of the first in the show, being able to create blue fire.
Breathe of Fire: According to director audio commentary, the "breath of fire" is inspired by an actual Kundalini yoga move called Agni-Prasana, where the oxygen is pulled in and pumped out very rhythmically like pumping bellows. The process is powered by abdominal contractions and used to cleanse and energize the body. Combustion:
Resembling a dragon breathing out flames, the breath of fire is a technique that involves the user firebending out of his or her mouth. The breath of fire has been exhibited by multiple individuals, including Fire Lord Ozai, Irho, Prince Zuko, and Aang while in the Avatar State within a dream. It was the employment of this firebending style in the midst of battle that earned war veteran Iroh his nickname, "The Dragon of the West," and it is alluded that it was from his uncle where Zuko learned how to use his own breath of fire. With its wide, encompassing range of fire, the technique allows for staving off multiple opponents and is also shown to be able to instantaneously warm the body even under extremely cold temperatures.
A unique ability to use firebending to super-heat the air around oneself and produce situated explosions, as demonstrated by the “Combustion Man”. The assassin goes about this by focusing the energy stored within his abdomen and then releasing it from his tattooed third eye. Extremely effective as it is destructive, the long-ranged technique is shown to be able to completely disintegrate hill-sized boulders and instantaneously evaporate large amounts of water with ease. However, the technique has the potential to be just as hazardous to the user as it can be to their surroundings, as the Combustion Man blew off his own right arm and leg due to his initial lack of control over the newly discovered ability in his youth.
According to director audio commentary, the "breath of fire" is inspired by an actual Kundalini yoga move called Agni-Prasana, where the oxygen is pulled in and pumped out very rhythmically like pumping bellows. The process is powered by abdominal contractions and used to cleanse and energize the body.
Each of the four bending disciplines contain a special sub-skill unique only to certain members of each element. Also known as "the cold-blooded fire", certain powerful Firebenders are able to generate and manipulate lightning. Mentally, it involves a complete absence of emotion and peace of mind, and physically it requires separating the energies of yin and yang, which in turn is almost identical to forcible separation of positive and negative electric charges necessary for the formation of real-life lightning. When the forces collide, the bender only guides, rather than controls, the lightning's direction. Because of this complexity, a lightning attack takes much longer to initiate than standard fire attacks. Re-directing lightning was first demonstrated by Iroh in "The Storm," and eventually creating lightning was first demonstrated by Azula in "The Avatar State."
Generating lightning involves a circular motion with the arms and only a select few possess the ability to invoke its power. So far the only Firebenders in the series who have demonstrated the ability to actively generate lightning are Azula, Ozai, and Iroh. Most notably, Iroh, with a technique developed after observing the energy re-directing techniques of waterbending, is able to redirect the course of lightning strikes by absorbing the bolt through one arm, guiding it through his stomach, and out his other arm. Zuko has expressed a desire to learn these abilities, but his emotional turmoil is preventing him from successfully creating lightning. He has, however, expressed the ability to redirect lightning, as displayed when his father fires a bolt toward him during the conclusion of the “Day of Black Sun”.
It is said that true Firebending power comes not from physical, size nor strength, but rather from the very control of one's breath. Firebender discipline stresses self-control and breath control as a means of directing and containing the fire manifested. Poor breath control means dangerously poor control of any fire generated. For this reason, breathing exercises are one of the most critical first steps for beginning Firebenders.
The main weaknesses behind the art of Firebending are its confrontational nature and its connection to the sun. Due to its aggressive nature, it traditionally lacks defensive techiques, which can leave a bender considerably vulnerable to attacks. Its connection to the sun results in a lessening of strength during the night, and a complete loss of firebending ability during a solar eclipse. Additionally, Firebenders require stability and balance in their lower body, and are vulnerable to attacks when off-balance, which Zuko demonstrated by breaking Admiral Zhao's root while fighting. Other circumstances that can damper a Firebender's power include darkness, a full moon, being underwater, and being in the rain.
It was shown in the episode, The Library and especially in The Day of Black Sun Part 2: The Eclipse, that firebenders lose their ability to firebend when an eclipse occurs, showing how much they really depend on the sun.
Approximately 100 years before the start of the series, Fire Lord Sozin launched a genocidal attack on the Air Nomads, succeeding in part due to the power granted him by a passing comet. Over the course of a century, the war has continued, and under the rule of Sozin's grandson, Fire Lord Ozai, the Fire Nation will see the return of "Sozin's Comet." As prophesied, this comet's immense energy will grant Ozai the power to conquer the entire world. The only threat to Ozai's campaign is the current Avatar, Aang. If Aang fails to master all four elements and stop Ozai before Sozin's Comet returns, the Fire Lord will be unstoppable regardless of the Avatar's influence, told to Aang by the previous Avatar, Roku.
The Fire Nation's religious clerics, the Fire Sages, once served Avatar Roku, but now tacitly endorse the imperialist war. Shyu is shown as the only Fire Sage to remain true to his allegiance to the Avatar, a trait he inherits from his father and grandfather Kaja.
Firebending in itself is not totally devoted to unleashing the power of fire on opponents, a facet that many apprentice Firebenders mistakenly assume. In actuality, the focus is placed upon balance. The art of firebending hinges on inner calm, discipline, and emotional stability. Without proper mastery of these vital qualities, taking on the art would be both imprudent as well as dangerous. This is illustrated through generating lightning.
A Firebender's powers increase during the day in the presence of their main power source, the sun, which allows them to more easily draw strength. However, because of this solar sympathy, their powers are weakened at night. Going even further, a solar eclipse is able to temporarily negate Firebenders' powers entirely, similar to how Waterbenders' powers are nullified during a lunar eclipse. Aside from their primary power source, Firebenders additionally draw their energy from other heat sources, including volcanic activity, lightning, the earth's core, and passing comets. A firebender's power is intensified in warmer climates and is at its peak when situated near their native equatorial homelands during the summer.
Among Firebenders, or at least those of the upper-class, conflicts and disputes of honor are settled by a challenge to an Agni Kai, or "fire duel," a traditional Firebender duel that is centuries old. Such a match is conducted in an open-air arena at sunset and may be witnessed by spectators. Beginning back-to-back, combatants, at least those of the male variety, fight bare-chested and barefooted. The goal in these duels is to knock an opponent off-balance, and incapacitate (fatally or otherwise) with a final blow. The favored finishing move seems to be a direct fire blast to the face. The duels have claimed the lives of countless Firebenders, and they've been even more unforgiving to those who show mercy on their opponents.
The word Agni Kai was created by using two already existing words. Agni is the Hindu god of fire. Kai is the Japanese word for meeting, usually business, but it can also mean a general meeting of two or more people.