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Cursed Energy ( (じゅ) (りょく) Juryoku?) is a power source aligned with negative emotions used by sorcerers and cursed spirits to fuel their jujutsu.

Description

Cursed Energy compiling to form a curse (Anime)

Cursed energy compiling to form curses in populated areas associated with stress.

Negative emotions such as grief and anger are the foundation of cursed energy. These emotions exist to some degree within most humans and as a result, the vast majority of human beings possess cursed energy. If this amount is higher than a certain degree, it grants the person the ability to see cursed spirits. These individuals are known as jujutsu sorcerers and they are very rare among the human race. Cursed energy leaks from the human body, accumulates, and ferments over time until a cursed spirit manifests.[1] This is only the case with non-sorcerers, as sorcerers are trained to control and channel their cursed energy into jujutsu.

Cursed energy is the primary power source for any sorcerer or cursed spirit. Cursed tools, cursed objects, and cursed corpses all contain cursed energy as well. It is ordinarily used to fuel cursed techniques, reinforce the body, or activate talismans, but cursed energy has various uses. The properties of cursed energy vary from person to person and its connection to the human brain is shrouded in mystery. In the anime, most cursed energy is blue in color but there are several exceptions.

The color of cursed energy is typically related to the negative emotion fueling it. Mahito's cursed energy is purple, which most likely represents malice, which he has nothing but for humanity. The blue color that almost every sorcerer uses is most likely just generic. Yuji Itadori's red color while putting everything he has into an attack to fight a cursed womb is also unusual, and is rarely seen in the anime.

Cursed Energy Detection

Toge notices strong cursed energy (Anime)

Toge taken by surprise when he notices powerful cursed energy.

Cursed Energy Perception ( (じゅ) (りょく) (かん) () Juryoku Kanchi?)[2] refers to the ability of humans with above-average levels of cursed energy to sense, and especially see, curses and jujutsu. The minimum requirement for a human to be considered a sorcerer is the ability to see curses. In extreme cases, humans will gain the ability to see curses when their life is in danger.[3]

Yuta's presence strickens Yuji, Choso, and Naoya

Yuji, Choso, and Naoya frightened by Yuta's ominous cursed energy.

The strength of a sorcerer or curse is generally assessed by their levels of cursed energy. Strong cursed energy can result in physical pressure that instills fear into those who sense it as a method of intimidation. The same concept can be applied to a jujutsu battle where reading an opponent's cursed energy is an effective way to predict their movements. Prediction based on cursed energy can backfire when faced with a fighter in cases where their physical prowess outclasses their cursed energy. Physically fast and strong fighters with low cursed energy are often unpredictable to enemy sorcerers.[4]

Sorcerers can also notice small, vague differences in cursed energy in addition to its overall amount. Suguru Geto, a curse manipulator who must consume curses, has slightly altered cursed energy.[5] The Inverted Spear of Heaven possesses foreign cursed energy that can cancel out jujutsu.[6] Yuji Itadori, Choso, and Naoya Zenin, could sense Yuta Okkotsu's presence without even physically locating him. Yuji mistook him for Satoru Gojo, the world's strongest sorcerer, simply because of Yuta's overwhelming volume of cursed energy, before realizing it was far more ominous than their sensei's.[7]

Observing how cursed energy fluctuates as someone fights is an effective way of judging someone's overall cursed energy. Reggie Star noticed the massive shift in cursed energy output when Fumihiko Takaba suddenly attacked Iori Hazenoki.[8] Ryu Ishigori saw Yuta participate in a small scuffle and could immediately tell that his cursed energy was immeasurable. Ryu could feel as Yuta's cursed energy depleted,[9] and when Yuta connected with Rika's full manifestation, Ryu could also sense his adversary's cursed energy filling back up as well.[10]

Residuals (Anime)

Residuals left by Mahito at the cinema.

Using jujutsu leaves Residuals ( (ざん) () Zan'e?) of cursed energy behind. Residuals leave spectral footprints that can be used to track the user.[11] Someone can even be identified by the residuals from their jujutsu. Expert sorcerers can be trained to cover up their residuals. The ability to detect cursed energy and understand its flow can be honed, but many cursed spirits are capable of hiding their presence the same way a sorcerer does.

Cursed Energy Manipulation

Controlling Cursed Energy

Cursed Energy Manipulation ( (じゅ) (りょく) (そう) () Juryoku Sōsa?)[12] — the ability to control the flow of one's cursed energy and channel it to carry out certain functions — is the foundation for all jujutsu and the first step towards becoming a jujutsu sorcerer. There is a world of difference between being able to sense jujutsu and being able to use it. Yuji Itadori was able to sense the pressure of cursed energy surrounding his school, but was not able to utilize it until enrolling at a jujutsu educational facility. He was first able to utilize cursed energy in combat while he was overwhelmed with anger and fear, but could not do so in a calmer situation a few days afterward.[13]

Yuta infusing his katana with cursed energy (Anime)

Yuta learning to fight curses by imbuing his sword with cursed energy.

Control over cursed energy requires innate skill and vigorous training. In order for Yuji to develop his skills, Gojo had him undergo special training that saw him controlling his emotions and his cursed energy at the same time. Yuta Okkotsu, someone with an overabundance of cursed energy, was trained to control it by constantly imbuing it into a katana. By training with the katana Yuta learned to manipulate his cursed energy to a degree and was capable of using it to exorcise curses almost immediately.

Yuji watching movies as training (Anime)

Yuji training to control his emotions as a foundation for learning to manipulate cursed energy.

Satoru Gojo compares cursed energy to electricity: it's volatile in nature and difficult to use in its rawest form.[14] While raw cursed energy can be used for its blunt force, it's best used by sorcerers to power their techniques in the same way electricity is best used to fuel electronics. In this case, cursed energy is flowed into a technique to activate a sorcerer's unique abilities.[15] However, cursed energy does not flow on its own. Yuji Itadori's cursed energy used to lag behind his superhuman speed when he threw a punch, resulting in his Divergent Fist technique. This delay was due to his inexperience with making cursed energy flow properly throughout his body.[16]

Flow of Cursed Energy (Anime)

The flow of cursed energy.

Proper control over one's emotions is key to channeling cursed energy and every jujutsu sorcerer is trained to do so. This makes it so sorcerers don't waste their power supply even while they're overcome with emotion.[17] This results in sorcerers leaking much less cursed energy than the average human. So much so, that if every human were a sorcerer, curses would cease to spawn. There are other differences in how sorcerers and non-sorcerers use cursed energy due to their profession, but the real reason lies in how it flows. While cursed energy leaks outward from non-sorcerers, it flows heavily within sorcerers which keeps it contained.[18]

Reading movements through the flow of cursed energy

The difference in cursed energy distribution in an elite sorcerer and an average one.

Most sorcerers have to make cursed energy flow, so most instinctively believe it starts from the negative feelings in their stomach and flows through the rest of the body. However, thinking of one's body as different sections is what delays the flow of their energy. In order to understand this cycle, one must realize that they exist in the world with their entire mind, body, and soul as one. Aoi Todo helped Yuji stop taking this maxim for granted, greatly accelerating his progression as a sorcerer.[19]

The flow of an elite jujutsu sorcerer is difficult to read because they have greater accuracy in controlling cursed energy. Their cursed energy is evenly distributed across their body, making their attack hard to predict until the very moment it's executed.[20]

Applying Cursed Energy

Yuji after using Divergent Fist (Anime)

Yuji channeling cursed energy into his fists.

Applying cursed energy to physical attacks can be as effective as a cursed technique when it comes to gifted combatants who specialize in hand-to-hand combat. Yuji can fight on par with that of a grade 1 sorcerer without a technique due to his seamless union of cursed energy manipulation and physical prowess.[21] Satoru Gojo was also able to successfully overpower multiple special grade curses using only cursed energy manipulation after deactivating his Limitless technique.[22]

Yuta and Ryu clash cursed energy blasts

Cursed energy blasts between two sorcerers.

The amount of cursed energy released by an individual is referred to as their potential Cursed Energy Output ( (じゅ) (りょく) (しゅつ) (りょく) Juryoku Shutsuryoku?). This applies to both how it's used offensively and defensively. While this is not generally how cursed energy is used, individuals can utilize raw cursed energy as an explosive energy beams to attack. Finger Bearers can launch their energy as projectiles and erect cursed energy barriers.[23] Ryu Ishigori has such a high degree of cursed energy output that he can discharge it in the form of a large-scale blast wave.[24] It is such a feat that Kokichi Muta[25] only through his cursed corpses, Hanami only through flower offering,[26] and Yuta Okkotsu only through the fully manifested Rika are able to discharge concentrated cursed energy beams, despite all of them being blessed with an incredible amount of cursed energy.

Panda reinforcing his body with cursed energy (Anime)

Panda reinforcing his body with cursed energy.

Defensively, users can coat their skin in cursed energy to harden their body and increase their ability to block incoming curse related attacks.[27] The same application can be used offensively, imbuing physical attacks with cursed energy to increase their destructive power to superhuman levels. Aoi Todo crushed a curse, several trees, and broke through Yuji's defense with a single cursed energy infused punch.[28]

Conventional weapons can also be infused with cursed energy to increase their strength. Imbuing too much cursed energy at one time to a normal weapon can compromise its integrity and destroy it, so a sorcerer must only infuse small amounts of energy at a time.[29] Imbuing moderate amounts of cursed energy over time can transform a normal weapon into a cursed tool.[30]

Special Traits

Applying cursed energy trait

Special traits are hard to defend with simple cursed energy.

There are rare cases where cursed energy carries a special property unique to its user. When applied to their fighting techniques, it can grant them a special texture or effect that gives them an advantage in battle. These special traits cannot be defended by simple reinforcement techniques. Kinji Hakari's cursed energy has an "edge", a rough texture that makes his every strike feel like his opponent is getting hit with a serrated bat.[31] Hajime Kashimo's cursed energy has the properties of electricity, which keeps his body in a constant state of electrification and makes all of his attacks impossible to defend against.[32]

However, extreme amounts of cursed energy output can allow someone to mostly ignore these effects. Hakari was able to get away with just some numbness from hitting Hajime due to the infinite cursed energy bonus he received from his domain's jackpot.[33]

Black Flash

Main Article: Black Flash
Yuta's Black Flash (Anime)

Yuta performs Black Flash.

Black Flash is a phenomenon of jujutsu where a spatial distortion is born as a result of the application of cursed energy within 0.000001 seconds of a physical hit. The distortion causes cursed energy to flash black, increasing the destructive power of the impact to the power of 2.5. There is no sorcerer who can use it at will, but those who have unleashed Black Flash gain an advanced understanding of cursed energy far beyond those who have not.[34]

Positive Energy

Main Article: Reverse Cursed Technique
Yuta healing his friends (Anime)

Yuta heals the injuries of his friends.

Cursed energy is born from negativity, so human flesh can't be regenerated from it even if it can be reinforced. By multiplying negative energy together, positive energy can be created. This can only be done using reverse cursed technique, which requires extremely complex and sophisticated cursed energy control.[35]

Cursed Restrictions

Main Articles: Binding Vow & Heavenly Restriction
Showing Jogo the Infinity (Anime)

A sorcerer divulging their technique increases the risk, but makes it more powerful as a result.

To gain something, one must offer something in return. This is a concept that affects the world beyond jujutsu. Alongside emotion, risk is a key factor that can affect cursed energy. The greater the risk to the user, the more their cursed energy will react. It is believed that the fastest way to raise one's level as a sorcerer is a Binding Vow with their life as the trade-off.[36] Self-imposed stipulations that are harmful or potentially so to the creator can increase their cursed energy and their cursed techniques in particular.

For example, the rules of a cursed technique establish the general parameters of an ability, and activation requirements can be set to determine the circumstances in which said ability can be used. By willingly divulging these rules, the user incurs more risk to themselves. Due to the negative emotions induced by potential repercussions, cursed energy grows in response and makes the cursed technique more effective.

Nanami activates overtime (Anime)

Nanami's cursed energy rising after limiting it for most of the day.

This concept also applies to why normal humans can suddenly see curses in a life or death situation. Human senses are heightened when their life is in danger because of the instinctive fight or flight reflex. The same concept amplifies someone's ability to sense curses. A normal human's cursed energy will rise if their life is in danger of being cursed, allowing them to perceive it.

A jujutsu practitioner can increase the overall power of their individual cursed techniques by self-imposing further restrictions that force more conditions on the user. Kento Nanami's pact restricts the amount of cursed energy he uses while on the clock at work. Once his overtime begins, Nanami receives an influx of cursed energy much greater than he would have had if he didn't restrict himself.[37] Mei Mei's Bird Strike forces a crow to commit suicide with its cursed energy limiter being removed as a tradeoff, resulting in a much more powerful attack.[38] The effective range of Sukuna's Malevolent Shrine can be increased by including a binding vow that creates an escape route.[39]

Kokichi affected by his Heavenly Restriction (Anime)

Kokichi's Heavenly Restriction trading a healthy body for boundless cursed energy.

Applying conditions to abilities to increase their effectiveness goes for barrier techniques as well as innate techniques. By going against the fundamentals of casting barrier techniques and staying outside their own curtain, the caster increases the risk of being noticed and increases the barrier's strength. The more obvious the caster's location, the stronger the barrier.[40]

Toji reveals the Inverted Spear of Heaven (Anime)

Toji Zenin: A Heavenly Restriction without cursed energy.

There are a few cases of Heavenly Restrictions that reduced someone's cursed energy to low levels with increased physical attributes as the trade off. Toji Zenin and Maki Zenin's Heavenly Restriction are the only two in the world that eliminates cursed energy from their bodies completely in return for unparalleled superhuman strength, speed, and senses.[41] The opposite, trading physical health for cursed energy is also true. Kokichi Muta was born with a fragile physical body and was given expansive cursed energy that spans a wide range in return.[42]

References

  1. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 77 (p. 6) and Episode 29.
  2. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 0-3 (p. 9).
  3. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 0-3 (p. 26).
  4. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 36 (p. 14) and Episode 15.
  5. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 68 (p. 7) and Episode 26.
  6. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 71 (p. 18-19) and Episode 27.
  7. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 139 (p. 18-19).
  8. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 169 (p. 10).
  9. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 177 (p. 17).
  10. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 178 (p. 2).
  11. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 19 (p. 9-10) and Episode 9.
  12. Jujutsu Kaisen Official Fanbook: (p. 144).
  13. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 12 (p. 16-17) and Episode 6.
  14. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 12 (p. 12-13) and Episode 6.
  15. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 12 (p. 13) and Episode 6.
  16. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 37 (p. 8-9) and Episode 16.
  17. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 12 (p. 18-19) and Episode 6.
  18. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 77 (p. 8-9) and Episode 29.
  19. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 37 (p. 8-12) and Episode 16.
  20. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 140 (p. 17-18).
  21. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 88 (p. 8).
  22. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 85 (p. 13) and Episode 33.
  23. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 7 (p. 6-9) and Episode 4.
  24. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 173 (p. 15).
  25. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 38 (p. 8) and Episode 16.
  26. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 51 (p. 17-20) and Episode 20.
  27. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 51 (p. 8) and Episode 20.
  28. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 34 (p. 12-15) and Episode 15.
  29. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Vol. 0 (p. 175).
  30. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Vol. 5 (p. 130).
  31. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 157 (pp. 11, 15).
  32. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 184 (p. 7-18).
  33. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga: Chapter 186 (p. 6).
  34. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 48 (p. 16-18) and Episode 19.
  35. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 74 (p. 10-11) and Episode 28.
  36. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 102 (p. 18) and Episode 38.
  37. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 23 (p. 10) and Episode 10.
  38. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 102 (p. 17-18) and Episode 38.
  39. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 119 (p. 4) and Episode 41.
  40. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 94 (p. 4-5) and Episode 35.
  41. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 77 (p. 7-8) and Episode 29.
  42. Jujutsu Kaisen Manga and Anime: Chapter 38 (p. 14) and Episode 16.

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Batto Sword Drawing  •  Curtain  •  Domain Expansion  •  Domain Amplification  •  Evening Moon Sword Drawing  •  Falling Blossom Emotion  •  Hazy Moon  •  Hollow Wicker Basket  •  Simple Domain
Extension
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Bird Strike  •  Blood Edge  •  Blood Meteorite  •  Body Repel  •  Boost On  •  Collapse  •  Convergence  •  Crimson Binding  •  Cursed Technique Lapse: Blue  •  Cursed Technique Reversal: Red  •  Cutie Honey  •  Death Swarm  •  Decay  •  Earthen Insect Trance  •  Ember Insects  •  Flowing Red Scale  •  Frost Calm  •  Granite Blast  •  Hairpin  •  Hollow Technique: Purple  •  Icefall  •  Instant Spirit Body of Distorted Killing  •  Jacob's Ladder  •  Kaichi  •  Miracle Cannon  •  Mode: Albatross  •  Piercing Blood  •  Pigeon Viola  •  Polymorphic Soul Isomer  •  Reiki  •  Resonance  •  Ryu  •  Slicing Exorcism  •  Soul Multiplicity  •  Spiderweb  •  Supernova  •  Sword Option  •  Thin Ice Breaker  •  Ultimate Cannon  •  Ultra Cannon  •  Ultra Shield  •  Ultra Spin  •  Well's Unknown Abyss  •  Wind Scythe
Maximum
Techniques
Maximum: Meteor  •  Maximum: Uzumaki  •  Maximum: Wing King
Domain
Expansions
Authentic Mutual Love  •  Chimera Shadow Garden  •  Coffin of the Iron Mountain  •  Deadly Sentencing  •  Horizon of the Captivating Skandha  •  Idle Death Gamble  •  Malevolent Shrine  •  Self-Embodiment of Perfection  •  Threefold Affliction  •  Time Cell Moon Palace  •  Unlimited Void  •  Womb Profusion
Cursed Objects
Special Grade Cursed Womb: Death Painting  •  Prison Realm  •  Ryomen Sukuna's Fingers
Cursed Tools
Special Grade Chain of a Thousand Miles  •  Inverted Spear of Heaven  •  Playful Cloud
Others Black Rope  •  Dragon-Bone  •  Festering Life Sword  •  Hiten  •  Kamutoke  •  Slaughter Demon  •  Split Soul Katana  •  Sword of Extermination
Cursed Corpses
Puppets Ultimate Mechamaru  •  Ultimate Mechamaru - Mode: Absolute
Abrupt-Mutation Cursed Corpses Panda (Gorilla Mode)  •  Takeru
Shikigami
Ten Shadows Technique Divine Dogs  •  Divine Dog: Totality  •  Great Serpent  •  Mahoraga  •  Merged Beast Agito  •  Max Elephant  •  Nue  •  Piercing Ox  •  Rabbit Escape  •  Round Deer  •  Tiger Funeral  •  Toad
Others Garuda  •  Judgeman  •  Kogane  •  Moon Dregs
Terminology
Taijutsu Black Flash  •  Divergent Fist  •  Manji Kick  •  Shiranui-Gata  •  Unblockable Drumming Beat
Sorcerers Curse User  •  Grade  •  Jujutsu Headquarters  •  Jujutsu Regulations  •  Jujutsu Sorcerer  •  Sorcerer Clan
Curses Cursed Energy  •  Cursed Human  •  Cursed Spirit  •  Cursed Womb
Other Bath  •  Barrier  •  Binding Vow  •  Heavenly Restriction  •  Innate Domain  •  Reverse Cursed Technique  •  Six Eyes  •  Transfigured Human
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