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This world and all the natural elements within it are not meant to be tampered with by us humans. We are mere inhabitants of this land – guests, if you may. Like how a visitor of a home does not alter his place of stay, we – as visitors of this earth – should not manipulate the elements for our own purposes. The way the land flows and changes is not for us to decide.

—Rostam

Rostam

羅斯塔姆

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Chinese 羅斯塔姆
Romanized Luósītǎmǔ
Nickname(s) Rasul
The Messenger
Rostam al-Kabir
Rostam Ag Mamoun
Biographical Information
Nationality Earth Kingdom
United Republic of Nations
Ethnicity Sandbender Tribes
Age 47 (in Book One: Air; at death)
Birthday 123 AG
Physical Description
Height About 6'2" or 1.88 m
Gender Male
Hair Color Dark brown
Eye Color Hazel
Personal Information
Love Interest(s) Zareen (wife; formerly) †
Lumi (mistress; formerly)
Weapon of Choice Sand, Earth
Fighting Style(s) Sandbending, Earthbending
Professional Information
Position Upper-class United Republic citizen (formerly)
Resistance movement leader (formerly)
Reign 151 AG ‒ 163 AG
Predecessor None; position created
Successor Amon
Occupation Artist (formerly)
Thief (formerly)
Folk musician (formerly)
Activist (formerly)
Author (formerly)
Equalist (formerly)
Affiliations Sandbender Tribes (formerly)
Equalists (formerly)
Portrayal

Rostam (羅斯塔姆, Luósītǎmǔ), also known by his pen name and pseudonym Rasul (拉蘇爾, Lāsūěr) is a supporting fan character of The Legend of Korra.

An esteemed Si Wong Desert-born Earth Kingdom author, scholar, civil rights activist, and revolutionary leader, he was the third son of Mamoun and Jawahir, former husband of Zareen, former lover of Lumi, and father of waterbender Samandar (with Lumi). A sandbender by birth, he was the obscured original founder of the movement known as "Equalism" and a strong advocate of non-violent resistance to bending and the oppression of non-benders. After 12 years of service to Republic City, he completely disappeared from the mainstream media and subtly resigned his position to Noatak, a Northern Water Tribe man who would later be known as Amon. After the fall of Amon's terrorist regime, Rostam ended his own life.

Appearance Edit

Physical Features Edit

A 47-year-old man of above-average height, Rostam possessed an appearance typical to that of a Si Wong Desert native. With tan-brown skin, hazel eyes, and dark hair, his characteristics were considered average (and even, by some, "stereotypical") by Earth Kingdom standards. Before the death of his wife, Zareen, Rostam wore his long hair down, allowing it to frame his shoulders. After her passing, he became much more stoic, styling his hair in a tight, traditional Earth Kingdom top-knot. Rostam also sported thick, bushy eyebrows that almost met to form a uni-brow and some facial hair, though he was mostly carefree about its length.

Attire Edit

With a dress style that was a blend between traditional Pashtun, Tuareg, Uyghur, Chinese, Sufi, and Persian, Rostam's clothing widely varied from day to day. In some occasions, he could be spotted wearing Republic City-style clothing while in others, he would retain his customary Si Wong attire. His most notable articles were a forest-green Peshawari turban used to conceal his hair and neck and a doppa-like embroidered cap concealing his top-knot.

Personality Edit

Rostam presented himself with a calm, logical, and laissez-faire-style attitude as opposed to Amon's controlling and authoritative demeanor. A scholar and a deeply philosophical person, he was a pacifist by nature and a patron of Air Nomad culture. Rostam truly cared about the well-being of non-benders, leading him to personally request for Noatak to strip him of his bending to fully experience the discrimination non-benders faced. Unlike the tyrant who succeeded him, Rostam publicly denounced the use of violence against benders, believing that war would only tear the city and people further apart. As the first leader of the Equalist movement, he led his followers on peaceful marches throughout Republic City and the United Republic to promote justice and peace among the two communities residing in the city. A profound and moving speaker, Rostam also delivered multiple speeches to the people of Republic City in attempts to bridge the distinct gap between the benders and non-benders of the community.

History Edit

Early Life Edit

Rasul, originally Rostam, was born in 123 AG in the Si Wong Desert to parents Mamoun and Jawahir of the nomadic Kabir sandbender tribe. He was the third born of the couple, born after his sister and brother Saira and Zaman, respectively, and before his younger brother, Ehsan. Rostam's father, Mamoun, was a non-bending desert scavenger (though his actions were considered dishonourable by sandbender tradition[1]) while Jawahir, his mother, was a sandbender and a folk artist. Jawahir utilised her affinity to sand to create elaborate sand mandalas which she'd sell to nearby towns for profit while Mamoun and his men raided oases, caravans, and travelers for loot. Rostam, who'd inherited his mother's bending, followed in Jawahir's footsteps while Saira (a bender) and Zaman (a non-bender) were instructed by Mamoun in the art of thievery.

Under his mother's benevolent tutelage, Rostam learned to appreciate the otherwise arid desert and to discover the affection needed to call the barren land "home". His maternal uncle, Mirza, was a former bandit who'd left the Si Wong to travel the world and educate himself on the four elements. Mirza would return to the tribe every year with literature and art from the various nations he'd collected during his journeys; out of all the children, Rostam admired Mirza's gifts the most. Even in the wasteland, Rostam educated himself in the classic literature and works of the nations – particularly that of the long-gone Air Nomads – while Saira and Zaman continued working with Mamoun and his men.

In Republic City Edit

With only a small satchel of bread, a canteen of water, and his rubab, Rostam arrived in Republic City at the age of 22 in 145 AG. Initially greeted with little hospitality and kindness (much like Avatar Korra's first experience), the exhausted Rostam had no money and no way to find a place to stay. Not fond of the idea of living with the vagabonds, Rostam struggled to attain enough to feed himself on a daily basis. He resorted to begging on the sidewalks of the city and mainly received degrading comments by pedestrians.

170 AG Edit

TBA

Relationships Edit

Amon Edit

TBA

Zareen Edit

Bender, non-bender, badgermole, whatever you choose to be will never change what I think about you. You're my husband, and I'll love you no matter what.

—Zareen to Rostam

A Fire Nation native, Zareen was Rostam's loving wife before her miscarriage and death. Though a firebender who valued her abilities fondly, she admired the charm and charisma Rostam displayed during his famous speeches and eventually fell in love with him despite their conflicting beliefs. Because her parents and siblings greatly disagreed with Rostam's philosophy, young Zareen knew she'd receive scorn from them if they found out about her admiration for the activist. Zareen managed to sneak out of her home during one of her home-school lessons to watch Rostam in one of his protests; her attraction to him grew even more as she listened to his words. Due to the crowd being comprised of almost all non-bender listeners, Zareen disguised her distinct Water Tribe appearance to fit in with the attire of the other citizens, much like Avatar Korra. She'd planned only to stay halfway in order to be able to return home before her instructor or parents discovered her absence, but found herself caught in the lecture and eventually remained until the end. Nervous and afraid, Zareen tried to squeeze through the large swarm of people to escape, but she was caught in the wave and pushed back, causing her to fall. Rostam, who'd been speaking with his close associates, noticed the young girl who'd collapsed on the ground and walked over to offer a hand to her. Ashamed of her clumsiness, Zareen tentatively took Rostam's hand, the latter helping her up. The two began talking and found a lot in common, eventually marrying after two years.

Lumi Edit

TBA

Samandar Edit

Rostam and Samandar were at awkward and tense terms with one another before Rostam's suicide, and the situation was never fully resolved. Samandar is Rostam's only son and only surviving child, conceived through an accident with Rostam's former lover, Zareen. After Zareen gave birth to Samandar, the firebender abandoned the child in disgust while Rostam left the boy out of hopes that he'd never find out the real reason he was born. Assuming he was solely of Water Tribe ancestry, Samandar, who'd inherited Lumi's waterbending, was left with no parents and became a street urchin like Skoochy. With no apparent purpose in life, Samandar became a petty thief and member of the Red Monsoon Triad early on in his life, though he was severely discriminated against by the other members for his somewhat earthbender-like appearance.

Philosophy Edit

Rostam's initial "Equalist" movement differed from the terrorist-like "Equalism" orchestrated by Amon. Instead of wanting to wage war against benders, Rostam hoped that a coexistence between benders and non-benders could be established, with the ultimate goal of progressively but non-aggressively eliminating all bending for true world peace. Several points of Rostam's philosophy were kept in that of Amon's, and some coincided with the beliefs of the Red Lotus.

Principles of Equalism Edit

  1. All humans – both benders and non-benders – were created equal and should be entitled to the same rights and opportunities in society.
  2. The bending arts are the leading cause of conflict and war; therefore, to achieve full peace, they should no longer be utilized.
  3. The four natural elements belong solely to the Earth and the forces that formed it and should only be manipulated and shaped by their rightful creator. Humans should have no place in deciding the flow and control of the elements.
  4. Both non-bending and bending individuals from each of the nations shall be allowed in high positions of government and law to prevent partiality and favouritism against either group.
  5. Politics, major government decisions, and the workplace should remain secular without the influence of bending or the usage of the elements.
  6. The duty of maintaining world order is an obligation of every citizen, state official, and laborer regardless of ethnicity, social class, or bender status. There is no true need for an Avatar.

Trivia Edit

  • Rostam (رستم; also spelled as Rustam, Rüstem, or Rostom) is a traditional Persian name with an often disputed meaning and origin.[2] Some theories state it may mean "boldness, bravery" (originally ranta-staxma in Avestan), "strong, strength"(from Middle Persian), "tallness", or "freedom, liberation".[3][4][5][6][7] The name most famously refers to a hero in the epic Shahnameh by the Persian poet Ferdowsi.[8]
  • His pen name, Rasul (رسول, rasūl) means "prophet, messenger" in Arabic.[9][10]
    • The term is used to refer to the Islamic Prophet Muhammad, who is also called Rasul Allah (رسول الله) meaning "messenger of God".[11]
  • Before his reveal at the hands of Avatar Korra, Rostam was the only one who knew of Amon's true identity and abilities, though he had no intention of spreading the truth. Rostam was also the only one who referred to Amon by his original name, much to the latter's annoyance.
  • Rostam was a closeted pansexual, but only ever engaged in romantic relationships with women during his lifetime.
  • Though he did not exactly possess a family name, he was formally referred to as "Rostam al-Kabir" (رستم الكبير); Kabir was the name of his sandbender tribe. He is also occasionally referred to by his patronymic name, "Rostam Ag Mamoun".
    • His tribe name is a reference to the real Sahara Desert of North Africa, often called As-Sahra Al-Kubra (الصحراء الكبرى‎‎; lit. "the Greatest Desert") in Arabic[12].
    • The patronymic name, Ag Mamoun, is derived from the word ag literally meaning "son of"[13]; this patronymic style is actually used by the Tuareg people of North Africa.
      • Since the word كَبِير (kabīr) is a variant form of كُبْرَى (kubrā)[14] and means "great, big, large" in Arabic[15], Rostam's full name can come to mean "Rostam the Great".
  • When feeling down, he used to use cactus juice imported straight from the Si Wong to achieve the equivalent of a "high".
    • This is a reference to Rick Sanchez and Zeep Xanflorp both of the show Rick and Morty, their vices being alcohol and opium, respectively.[16][17]
  • His name in Traditional Chinese is purely phonetic, as "Rostam" is not a Chinese name, therefore, there is no specially chosen meaning for the four characters (they are all random).
  • Rostam's father's name, Mamoun (مأمون) means "trustworthy" in Arabic[18] while his mother's name, Jawahir (جواهر) means "jewels, jewelry" in Arabic[19][20].
    • Lumi, his former lover's name, means "snow" in Finnish.[21]

References Edit

  1. http://avatar.wikia.com/wiki/Sandbender_Tribes#Culture
  2. http://www.behindthename.com/name/rostam
  3. http://quranicnames.com/rustam/
  4. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rostam_(Vorname)
  5. https://fa.wikipedia.org/wiki/رستم
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rostam#Background
  7. https://www.behindthename.com/name/rostam/comments
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shahnameh
  9. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/رسول
  10. https://www.behindthename.com/name/rasul
  11. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad
  12. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sahara
  13. http://www.fantasynamegenerators.com/tuareg-names.php#.Wbh9p9VSzIU
  14. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/أكبر#Arabic
  15. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/كبير
  16. http://rickandmorty.wikia.com/wiki/Rick_Sanchez
  17. http://rickandmorty.wikia.com/wiki/Zeep_Xanflorp
  18. https://www.behindthename.com/name/mamun
  19. https://www.behindthename.com/name/jawahir
  20. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/جواهر#Arabic
  21. https://www.behindthename.com/name/lumi

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