The Ma-fuu-ba is a deadly technique, according the manga and the anime. Yet, we have seen moments in the anime, in which the one that performed it didn’t die, being an example of this Tienshin Han. According to the manga (original story of Akira Toriyama), Tienshin Han never performed the technique against any enemy. The only exception to this was Kami (in an earthling body), but his Mafuba was never completed, since Piccolo Jr deflected and returned it with a counter MaFuba. Now, in the anime, we know that Piccolo can perform this technique as well, something that was never mentioned before, since we’ve only seen him performing its counter version. We know now the answer to why Goku didn’t die while performing the Ma-fuu-ba in Master Roshi’s house, and it is not because of his power.
The Ma-fuu-ba consists of 3 different steps:
- 1) Use a recipient (jar, boiler, bottle, or whatever item with a lid to close it), and use some sort of talisman or paper with an inscription to seal the victim.
- 2) Use the twisting energy wave to catch the victim, and then direct it to the case in which it will be sealed.
- 3) Once the victim is locked inside the recipient, the performer must use his own ki to complete the seal.
The two characters that performed the Ma-fuu-ba:
When Tienshin Han practices the performing of the Mafuba, he does so without sealing anybody in it, so he did not die. Goku does the same thing, but he does practice with Turtle (Master Roshi’s companion). While the poor Turtle was indeed put inside a jar many times, Goku never sealed it with his ki, so we understand that the technique was never fully completed. On the other hand, Thienshin Han did practice with an electric boiler and with a seal, but never locked anyone in it, and he also didn’t die. What is strange to us is thatMaster Roshi does warn about how dangerous the technique is, but never mentions that it is deadly, so we understand that the anime may not follow the rules from the manga, or maybe Master Roshi knows a way to perform the technique without dying.
Let’s recall that when Kami (in the body of Shen) intended to use the Ma-fuu-ba, he knew a way to not die, but it is unknown to us how. Perhaps he was willing to sacrifice the human body he possessed, or maybe he knew a way to diminish the downside effect of this technique. Should the anime follow the manga’s rules, Goku must die after performing the Ma-fuu-ba against Zamasu, unless there is a way of not dying, or perhaps, in the anime itself, the technique is not considered deadly at all, explaining why Tienshin Han never died after performing the Ma-fuu-ba against Piccolo Daimao (something that did happen in the manga).