An elementary school history teacher, Zou Kang took his class to a museum on an ordinary field trip. But something extraordinary happened - while he was amusing himself trying to decipher the writing on some old pottery, something clicked in his head. Recitiing the phrase "Om me padme hum" ("All hail the jewel in the lotus"), Kang was granted access to the siddhis. He became the being known as Thundermind.
Kang's first act as a superhuman was to save a sinking ferry. One woman on the ferry, a teacher named Ms. Wu, fell in love with Thundermind there and then. Ever since, Zou Kang has been living a double life: he is considered just a friend by Ms. Wu, but is the object of her affections when he's Thundermind.
Thundermind is a founding member of the Great Ten, and is one of the strongest and most beloved members of that group. When alleged Chinese Gods attacked the Chinese Communist Party, he battled their strongest member, Kuan Yu, to a virtual standstill in the heart of Beijing.
Zou considers himself the conscience of his team, and will not hesitate to go against orders if he feels it is the right thing for him to do. When the JSA lead an assault on Science Island to recue Black Adam that lead to a standoff with the Great Ten, it was Thundermind who telepathically revealed the Chinese government's hand in the assassination of Black Adam's family to Alan Scott, unbeknownst to August General in Iron, the Great Ten's field commander.
- Transformation: By uttering the phrase 'All hail the jewel in the lotus,' Zou Kang is physically transformed into the superhuman form of Thundermind. Thundermind is a "Bodhisattva," which means he has the powers listed in the siddhis of Tantric Buddhist mysticism. These supernatural powers are the following:
- Superhuman Speed
- Size Alteration
- Bilocation: Thundermind can create a duplicate of himself, to which he is psychically linked, in order to be in two places at once. When he has no more need of his clone, Thundermind can reabsorb it into his body.
- According to Tony Bedard in an interview, Thundermind leads a double life. When he's not Thundermind, he's a nebbish school teacher who is in love with fellow teacher Ms. Wu, who only has eyes for Thundermind. In his heroic guise, he's the most popular and beloved member of the Great Ten -- bright and telegenic, unfailingly polite and possessing a multitude of powers. He's also a reflection of his own culture, especially of the Buddhist tradition. His superpowers are actually "siddhis" or Buddhist supernatural abilities, and they stem from an ancient scripture he translated which contained his magic phrase or mantra, 'All hail the jewel in the lotus.' That phrase is to Zou Kang what 'Shazam' is to Billy Batson. When he utters it, he's transformed.
- Identity is known to government officials.
- Zou Kang being his own rival for Ms. Wu's love echoes the classic Clark Kent/Superman/Lois Lane love triangle.
- Based on some circumstantial evidence from The Great Ten #3, Zou Kang's contact with the siddhis may have granted him knowledge of the fourth wall. However, no other evidence has been forthcoming.
- 16 Appearances of Zou Kang (New Earth)
- 3 Images featuring Zou Kang (New Earth)
- Quotations by or about Zou Kang (New Earth)
- Character Gallery: Zou Kang (New Earth)