Muzan Kibutsuji is the main antagonist of Demon Slayer. He is a Demon, being the first of his kind, who has lived for more than a thousand years, being as such, the one responsible for the origin of the other demons, responsible for having corrupted Michikatsu Tsukiguni and being the one who murdered Tanjirō’s family and Nezuko, turning the latter into a Demon, being the trigger for Tanjirō’s desire for revenge towards him. In this article, we will talk about one aspect of Muzan’s character, as we will reveal to you why Muzan, the ruler of the Demons, is so afraid of Tanjirō Kamado, a beginner Demon Slayer.
Muzan Kibutsuji is so afraid of Tanjirō Kamado because Tanjirō is the successor of the Hinokami Kagura dance, which is actually the Sun Breathing Style used by Yoriichi Tsugikuni to defeat Muzan centuries ago. The Hinokami Kagura is the only known technique that can defeat Muzan, and since Tanjirō was its last known user, Muzan was afraid of him as he was the last one that could kill him.
The article will elaborate on the answer we have provided you with above. We are going to tell you about the Hinokami Kagura technique, as well as why Muzan is so afraid of it. You’ll also find out how exactly Tanjirō is connected to that same technique and why he has such a big role in the story. The article is going to contain a lot of spoilers, so be careful how you approach it.
Why is Muzan scared of Tanjirō Kamado?
Tanjirō is the protagonist of Demon Slayer, while Muzan is the series’ main antagonist. The two became connected when one night, while Tanjirō was out to sell coal for his family and had to stay with a neighbor until the morning because it had become too late to travel alone in the woods, Muzan Kibutsuji came to his home and slaughtered his whole family, save for his sister Nezuko, whom he turned into a Demon.
Vowing to avenge his family and cure his sister, Tanjirō becomes a Demon Slayer with the sole goal of ridding the world of Demons and, especially, Muzan. This is how the two of them became connected, but this is not why Muzan was afraid of Tanjirō.
Namely, if you look at their powers, it doesn’t really make sense that Muzan is more powerful than Tanjirō. Muzan is the most powerful character in the series by far. He is immortal, and he was able to take on all of the Hashira in the series during the final battle. Demon Slayers have tried to kill him for centuries, but Muzan always avoided them. He had only one weakness: the Sun Breathing Style used by Yoriichi Tsugikuni years ago, the only technique that almost killed Muzan. Muzan managed to survive and escape, but as a villain who wanted to be immortal, he was mortally afraid of the legendary Demon Slayer and his technique, so he remained in hiding until he was certain that the technique would wither away into oblivion.
But how is Tanjirō connected to all of this? Tanjirō is not a direct descendant of Yoriichi, but his late father, Tanjurō, was the descendant of Yoriichi’s best friend, whom Yoriichi taught his Sun Breathing Style. Yoriichi could not use it to kill Muzan, but Yoriichi’s friend passed down the technique as a dance known as the Hinokami Kagura.
Tanjirō witnessed his father perform it once when he was a child, but since his father died when Tanjirō was still a child, he never got to pass it down to Tanjirō. Muzan somehow became aware of the fact that the Kamado family knew of the technique and set out to kill them, primarily because he was afraid of it.
And that is the principal reason why Tanjirō is a source of fear for Muzan. Muzan was aware that Tanjirō could activate the Hinokami Kagura at any point and kill him, so he wanted to eliminate him. He did not know that Tanjirō was not aware that the Hinokami Kagura was actually the Sun Breathing Style, and it took him a while to remember it and use it. But that was actually Muzan’s issue and something that he had to take care of himself, and we cannot criticize him for not trying; but, as it should be, Tanjirō was able to defeat him in the end.
What is the Hinokami Kagura in Demon Slayer?
The first Demon Slayer, Yoriichi Tsugikuni, employed a style of swordplay known as Sun Breathing, also known as Original Breathing. It is the foundation for subsequent Breath techniques that have been adapted from it and were initially created by the Yoriichi disciples who wanted to acquire Sun Breathing. But because Yoriichi was better than them, he taught and trained them in a different custom style that was based on their strengths and weaknesses and ended up being the dominant Breathing Style. Kokushibo mentions that he and Muzan Kibutsuji killed every swordsman who knew about Sun Breathing just before he passed away.
As we have explained above, the Style was passed on within the Kamado family as a dance. The dance is made up of twelve elements repeated throughout the whole night until dawn. According to Tanjurō, the Breathing Style used in this dance enables the user to never run out of breath no matter how far they move, allowing them to appear to dance indefinitely. Tanjirō Kamado, who learned this style by remembering his father’s dance, was the style’s last user. This method can be taught to others by a member of the Kamado family.
Shinjuro Rengoku later reveals that the Hinokami Kagura is a renowned breath technique known as Breath of the Sun, the first breath style ever developed. Yoriichi Tsugikuni, the inventor of Sun Breathing, modified it to perfectly fit the nature and the abilities of the student he taught it to, and all other breath patterns are descended from it. Breath methods like the Hinokami Kagura and Sun Breathing imitate the sun by having the user imitate it with their movements, techniques, and powers.
All techniques and forms are extremely varied and have no set pattern, making them the most versatile and effective against demons. Sun Breathing users can visualize themselves manipulating solar flames when unleashing its techniques. This style of breath also seems to be able to hinder a demon’s regeneration to some degree and cause burning-like pain. Tanjirō has also noted that using this style increases his overall power and speed, likely due to his body being more suited to Sun Breathing than to his initial Water Breathing.
And this is the story of the Hinokami Kagura, the only technique that Muzan Kibutsuji was afraid of and the only technique that could actually kill Muzan. Now you know why he was afraid of it and why the dance was so dangerous and powerful.