Why Amon’s ‘energybending’ is flawed compared to Avatar Aang’s, and why there could still be a way for his victims to bend their element again!
[ With Pictures! 8D ]
Throughout ‘The Last Airbender’, Aang struggled with the idea of having to fight and defeat Fire Lord Ozai without killing him. This stress followed him into his dreams, causing him to ‘sleepwalk’ to an island off the coast of Ember Island. There he meditated, in hopes of finding another way to defeat Ozai. But to his dismay, all of his previous Avatar lives revealed the same truth; Ozai must be killed.
This is when Aang met with the face of the island - the Lion Turtle. This creatures ancient wisdom was shared with the young Avatar, introducing a new technique that could be used to subdue the Fire Lord without killing him:
With this knowledge bestowed upon him, Aang was able to take control of Ozai’s spirit and strip him of his bending forever. This is when energybending was used for the first time. The technique that Aang used on Ozai is seen below:
Then, in ‘The Legend of Korra’, it is revealed that Aang used the technique on another criminal.
In 128 ASC, Yakone terrorized the streets of Republic City with his bloodbending abilities. He was the first known bloodbender to be able to use the illegal technique without the presence of a full moon. During his trial, he bloodbent the entire courtroom in broad daylight, and attempted to make an escape, until he was caught by a now full grown Avatar Aang.
Again, Aang had no choice but to take Yakone’s bending away.
These are the two known cases where we have seen an Avatar take someone’s bending away.
The Difference Between Energybending and Amon’s Technique:
When Avatar Aang performs energybending, his hands are placed in two specific spots - the center of the head, and over the heart.
These are the same two spots that the lion turtle touched when he bestowed the knowledge of energybending upon Aang.
The spots Aang has his hands are two of the seven chakra points on the human body. These points were explained a little bit in ‘The Last Airbender’ by Guru Pathik.
In his words: “The heart chakra deals with love, and is blocked by grief. The mind (third eye) chakra, located in the center of the forehead, deals with insight and is blocked by illusion.”
The Lion Turtle also mentioned these two chakras in it’s speech about energybending: “The true mind can weather all the lies and illusions without being lost. The true heart can touch the poison of hatred without being harmed. Since beginning-less time, darkness thrives in the void, but always yields to purifying light.”
With this knowledge, it would seem that to properly perform energybending, one must utilize both the heart and third eye chakras in order to take away a person’s bending.
Amon’s method however, does not follow this pattern.
In ‘The Legend of Korra’, Amon has taken away many people’s bending abilities already (see below):
Lightning Bolt Zolt:
In the above pictures, the third eye chakra point is always being touched, with the exception of his attack on Tarrlok, where we saw Amon’s hand coming down but never really saw whether or not he touched his forehead (although it’s widely accepted that he did take Tarrlok’s bending away with the same technique).
But still focusing on the third eye chakra point. It deals with the mind, letting a person gain insight. It is corrupted by illusions.
So, Amon could be using this chakra point in his technique to make a bender believe they cannot bend anymore. Bending is a very spiritual practice, and therefore demands a clear mind.
Guru Pathik explained that chakra will not flow properly if it is muddied up.
Amon clouds their minds. He makes his presence known to Republic City on several occasions, scaring the benders and threatening them. The fear in their minds combined with the abuse of the third eye chakra results in a state of mind that leaves benders disoriented and unable to use their powers anymore.
(The red circle on Amon’s mask is where the third eye chakra is located)
Also, with the exception of Tahno from the examples above, Amon is usually seen putting pressure on the back of a victims neck. There is also a chakra in the neck, known as the throat chakra, which deals with truth and is blocked by lies.
If the throat chakra is closed, a person can undergo decay. Amon wants to ‘break down’ the benders of the city, and turn them into nonbenders. With the throat chakra closed, a person cannot properly experience their feelings of self-expression and creativity, which are also important in bending.
( …I have to say though, the fact that Amon didn’t use this move on Tahno makes me think that it is just a fighting move of his that he uses to get the upper-hand. It seems if utilizing the throat chakra was important, he would have done it to Tahno regardless.)
Amon does not attack the heart chakra as Aang does! Heart chakra is the center of the 7 chakras, and along with its representation of love and compassion, it has a physical connection with circulation. The circulation of a benders power has it’s core in the heart.
Amon’s technique is flawed because, although he may cloud the mind of a bender, he does not control their heart. So if their mind/third eye chakra is unclouded by these illusions, victims of Amon’s attack might be able to bend again!
tl;dr: Just to summarize:
I REALLY hope my theory is at least somewhat right! The benders who Amon attacked were nowhere near as bad as the men Aang had to silence for good!
And only three more episodes left of the season… SO exciting!! :D ♥