Kung Fu master Liu Fei, from Mianyang, South-West China, can exhale smoke and fire from his mouth, sort of like a dragon. And I’m not talking about the kind of fire breathing performances you get to see at the circus, either; this man seems to be able to produce fire from within his body, exhaling it through his sawdust-packed mouth.
The viral video of Fei’s performance and is really quite mind-blowing. He starts off by stuffing large quantities of sawdust in his mouth. Then, he makes a hole into the sawdust, with his finger, and starts to blow out small puffs of smoke through the dust.
Later, he uses a fan to blow air into his ear and even more smoke comes out of his mouth. The performance culminates with actual flames coming out of his mouth, which get bigger and and more frequent towards the end. The whole thing seems miraculous, but after watching the video, some forum users came up with a few plausible explanations.
“There’s probably a hot ember in the sawdust he packed in his mouth,” wrote a self-confessed pyromaniac. “When he exhales, the ember starts to consume the surrounding sawdust with the oxygen provided. He maintains the fire controlling the oxygen supply. If it’s out of control, he smothers it with compressed sawdust.” Others suspected that the sawdust was so highly flammable that he could probably set fire to it very easily. After doing a bit of online research, it seems reporters have watched Liu performing the feat in front of their eyes, and confirmed he uses nothing to light the sawdust.
“The chances are the sawdust is in fact lycopodium powder,” wrote another person. “The bowl most likely has buried in it a hidden mouth guard and when he stuffs his mouth with powder. In the mouth piece is hidden a capsule of potassium permanganate and glycerin, this ignites after 20 -30 seconds starting a reaction with the lycopodium, and the fan adds oxygen to the powder, the flame created at the end shows better combustion of the fuel.”
Well, whatever the explanation, it sure is a cool trick to watch.