The Air Nomads have their set of toys, and Korra showed impressive skill in other areas than waterbending. However the case for all of the others would likely be different. So my question is is there any evidence of the other Nation's Avatar selection?

  • 3
    Good question, but I suspect it isn't answerable. Also, it probably depends on the Avatar in question. Aang didn't really exhibit any signs other than his preference for four specific toys. A flashback of Roku being announced as the Avatar seemed to catch him by complete surprise (the episode didn't indicate how the Fire Nation knew he was the Avatar). Korra, on the other hand, didn't really need much of a test. The impression given in a flashback is that she was bending 3 elements almost constantly at an extremely young age.
    – Ellesedil
    Mar 21, 2016 at 8:19
  • In <i>The Last Airbender</i> movie, Iroh & Zuko of the Fire Nation put a rock (?), some water and a candle on a table (his air bending skills were already obvious) on a table to see how they reacted to Aang when they captured him to see if he was the Avatar. But the details of that scene are a bit sketchy for me since its been a long time since I've seen that movie. They may have done something with air on the table too somehow. Maybe someone can clarify this scene.
    – iMerchant
    Mar 21, 2016 at 8:24
  • 19
    @iMerchant - There was no movie. You are mistaken.
    – Valorum
    Mar 21, 2016 at 11:46
  • 4
    @Richard There is no movie in Ba Sing Se Mar 21, 2016 at 12:48
  • 3
    @LogicianWithAHat I think the Earth-King has an invitation to Lake Laogai for iMerchant....
    – CBredlow
    Mar 21, 2016 at 16:55

4 Answers 4


Although the question is interesting, we don't have a reason to believe other nations have a similar way of identifying the Avatar. Air Nomads are likely in this position because:

Spiritual Connection

In general, Air Nomads have a better connection with their spiritual side, making the Air Nomads the most likely canididates for a spiritual test like this.


The Air Nation was the smallest of the four nations and inhabitants lived in secluded places. The other nations would have a more difficult task to screen all newborns in their nation with a similar kind of test.

It is never confirmed or denied the other nations have a way of telling who the next Avatar is going to be. We only know this is the way Aang learned about his powers. Roku was only informed of his powers by the Fire Sages, no reason is given how they know he's the Avatar. While Korra didn't need anyone to tell her, since she figured it out by herself.


In the Rise of Kyoshi (canon based novel), the Earth kingdom finds their Avatar through a form of directional geomancy. They lay out a map of the world, then use rocks to divide it in half, narrowing down the position of the avatar from country, to state, to town, until they wind up on the Avatar's doorstep. So far in canon no other nation has revealed how they determine their Avatar, but my speculation for the Fire Nation is that the fire sages have something to do with it, considering what's shown in the show.


We don't know how the other nations handle this issue. Mind you, Korra was identified because her parents saw what she could do and they contacted the Order of the White Lotus. Note that during Aang's tenure they changed from their Freemason ways to a more public group (and we all know what THAT caused) that the common man could somehow contact (note that their leader mentions that there were several duds in the process prior to finding Korra).

However, going by episode 1x02 ("The Avatar Returns") there are several groups all over the world with temples that started to glow when Aang entered the Avatar State. It is quite likely that these groups were tasked with finding the new Avatar in their nation upon the death of the old one, a bit like how the White Lotus found Korra.


Water Tribes

An "unrevealed procedure" that can have "auspicious signs" is all we know.

How did you know? What were the signs? [Kuruk] hadn’t ever bent the other elements until they told him to try, confident in his success. Weeks ago, he’d been astonished when the glowing crystal they gave him rose into the air under his command. The sages of the Northern Water Tribe only gave him mischievous grins in response and assured him the unrevealed procedure had gone flawlessly, an auspicious sign for his era. - Shadow of Kyoshi

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