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Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA]  |  Energy Work, Psionics, & Paranormal Studies  |  General Psi | Psychic | Psionics | Energetic Discussion (Moderators: Merticus, SoulSplat, Eclecta, Maloryn, Zero)  |  The Penanggalan 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: The Penanggalan  (Read 6324 times)
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Nothing comes without a price...

« on: February 04, 2008, 08:48:09 pm »

It was oh, ninth grade I suppose, when I was actually bored enough to utilize the library of my humble high school in my oh-so-Baptist hometown. I didn't expect to find anything of interest but to my surprise the school actually gave in to the 'freedom of religion' schtick and provided the holy bible, and in accordance with law a few other less checked-out books. One of them was called The Picture Book of Devils, Demons and Witchcraft, and it was in this book that I discovered the glory that is the penanggalan. Needless to say, I never returned it.

Originating in the Malay Peninsula, the penanggalan is a rather gruesome breed of vampire. There are many explanations of what causes the creation of such a monstrosity, but one of the most prominent is the belief that it is the detached head of a woman who died during childbirth, that in her madness ravages the region in search of blood and flesh. The penanggalan is always depicted as a severed and floating female head with entrails and bit of bone hanging from the neck, as well as the heart.

The penanggalan as depicted in the book
Vampires: A Field Guide to the Creatures that Stalk the Night

According to oral tradition, the creature appears as a normal woman during the daytime, and it is only at night that the head detaches from the body and perches on trees or roofs of houses of women who are in labor, waiting to drink the blood left by afterbirth. The women who have been preyed upon almost always contract a fatal wasting disease and die soon after. The penanggalan is also referred to as the penanggal, and in the Philippines, the manananggal.

House AVA Founder
House AVA Member
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« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2008, 03:54:49 am »

Penanggalan: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
LINK: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penanggalan

The Penanggalan or `Hantu Penanggal` is a peculiar variation of the vampire myth that apparently began in the Malay Peninsula. See also the Manananggal, a similar creature of Filipino folklore. "Penanggal" or "Penanggalan"' literally means "detach", "to detach", "remove" or "to remove". Both terms - Manananggal and Penanggal - may carry the same meaning due to both languages being grouped or having a common root under the Austronesian language family, though the two creatures are culturally distinct in appearance and behavior.

According to the folklore of that region, the Penanggalan is a detached female head that is capable of flying about on its own. As it flies, the stomach and entrails dangle below it, and these organs twinkle like fireflies as the Penanggalan moves through the night. In Malaysian folklore, a Penanggal may be either a beautiful old or young woman who obtained her beauty through the active use of black magic, supernatural, mystical, or paranormal means which are most commonly described in local folklores to be dark or demonic in nature. Another cause where one becomes a Penanggal in Malaysian folklore is due to the result of a powerful curse or the actions of a demonic force, although this method is less common than the active use of black magic abovementioned. Unlike Manananggal, all Penanggal are females and there is no variation in Malaysian folklore to suggest a Penanggal to be male.

A notable difference between a Penanggal and Manananggal is that a Penanggal detaches only her head with her lungs, stomach and intestines attached while leaving the body in a pre-prepared container filled with vinegar to preserve the body against rapid decomposition.

The Penanggalan is usually a female midwife who has made a pact with the devil to gain supernatural powers. It is said that the midwife has broken a stipulation in the pact not to eat meat for 40 days; having broken the pact she has been forever cursed to become a bloodsucking vampire/demon. The midwife keeps a vat of vinegar in her house. After detaching her head and flying around in the night looking for blood the Penanggalan will come home and immerse her entrails in the vat of vinegar in order to shrink them for easy entry back into her body.

One version of the tale states that the Penanggal was once a beautiful woman or priestess, who was taking a ritual bath in a tub that once held vinegar. While bathing herself and in a state of concentration or meditation, a man entered the room without warning and startled her. The woman was so shocked that she jerked her head up to look, moving so quickly as to sever her head from her body, her organs and entrails pulling out of the neck opening. Enraged by what the man had done, she flew after him, a vicious head trailing organs and dripping venom. Her empty body was left behind in the vat.

The Penanggal, thus, is said to carry an odor of vinegar with her wherever she flies, and returns to her body during the daytime, often posing as an ordinary mortal woman. However, a Penanggal can always be told from an ordinary woman by that odor of vinegar.

The Penanggalan's victims are traditionally pregnant women and young children. Like a banshee who appears at a birth rather than a death, the Penanggalan perches on the roofs of houses where women are in labour, screeching when the child is born. The Penanggalan will insert a long invisible tongue into the house to lap up the blood of the new mother. Those whose blood the Penanggalan feeds upon contract a wasting disease that is almost inescapably fatal. Furthermore, even if the penanggalan is not successful in her attempt to feed, anyone who is brushed by the dripping entrails will suffer painful open sores that won't heal without a bomoh's help.

Midwives who become Penanggalans at night appear as normal women in the daytime. They however can be identified as Penanggalans by the way they behave. When meeting people they will usually avoid eye contact and when performing their midwife duties they may be seen licking their lips, as if relishing the thought of feeding on the pregnant woman's blood when night comes.

Pregnant women can protect themselves from the penanggalan by surrounding their houses with thorns. A Penanggalan who attacks the house will get her entrails caught in the thorny bushes and can then be killed with parangs or machetes. As an extra precaution the pregnant woman can keep scissors or betel nut cutters under her pillow as the Penanggalan is afraid of these items. Another way of killing the vampire is for some brave men to spy on the Penanggalan as it flies around in the night. The men should find out where the Penanggalan lives. When the Penanggalan leaves the house to feed, the men should enter the midwife's house and find the midwife's body that is now emptied of its entrails. They should insert broken glass and nails into the hollow body and leave the house. When the Penanggalan comes home to insert her entrails into the body she will die a painful death with her entrails cut to shreds.

Additionally, unlike the Manananggal which uses a proboscis-like tongue, a Penanggal is commonly depicted as having fangs. The number of fangs varies from one region to another, ranging from two like the Western vampire to a mouthful of fangs.

A Penanggal is said to feed on human blood or human flesh although local folklore (including its variations) commonly agrees that a Penanggal prefers the blood of a newborn infant, the blood of woman who recently gave birth or the placenta (which is devoured by the Penanggal after it is buried). All folktales also agree that a Penanggal flies as it searches and lands to feed. One variation of the folklore however claims that a Penanggal is able to pass through walls. Other, perhaps more chilling, descriptions say that the Penanggal can ooze up through the cracks in the floorboards of a house, rising up into the room where an infant or woman is sleeping. Sometimes they are depicted as able to move their intestines like tentacles.

The most common remedy prescribed in Malaysian folklore to protect against a Penanggal attack is to scatter the thorny leaves of a local plant known as Mengkuang which would either trap or injure the exposed lungs, stomach and intestines of the Penanggal as it flies in search of its prey. These thorns, on the vine, can also be looped around the windows of a house in order to snare the trailing organs. This is commonly done when a woman has just given birth. However this practice will not protect the infant if the Penanggal decides to pass through the floorboards.

A prescribed method of permanently killing a Penanggal requires for it to be carefully followed and tracked back to its lair (which is always well hidden), with the person or creature to be positively identified. The act of destroying it is carried out the next time the Penanggal detaches itself from its body. Once the Penanggal leaves its body and is safely away, it may be permanently destroyed by either pouring pieces of broken glass into the empty neck cavity which will sever the internal organs of the Penanggal when it reattaches to the body, or by sanctifying the body and then destroying it by cremation or by somehow denying the Penanggal from reattaching to its body upon sunrise.

Due to the common theme of Penanggal being the result of active use of black magic or supernatural means, a Penanggal cannot be readily classified as a classical undead being or a vampire as per Western folklore or literature. The creature is, for all intent and purposes, a living human being during daytime (much like the Japanese Rokurokubi) or at any time when it does not detach itself from its body.

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House AVA Founding Member
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Posts: 12

« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2009, 12:08:33 pm »

Hey guys,

Im a hybrid vamp from Singapore, a country located in the malay peninsula just beside Malaysia. Besides the penanggalan, there's also the jerangkung & the pontianak. The jerangkung is a type of supernatural ghostly vamp that is a head attached with wings. Sort of like Temple of vampire logo. The Pontianak however is a lady who dies of childbirth. She stays in frangipani trees or in banana trees. This is what the local malays believe. She's also a shapeshifter who can transform into a huge owl. Her presence can  be known if one hears a piercing shrieking laughter or baby crying in the middle of the night. She usually lures men to her by transforming into a seductive beautiful lady & once she has the upper hand of her victim,she will transform into her hideous self & drain their life force from them, often gutting them in the process.
Level 5 Contributor
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« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2009, 08:26:23 am »

She usually lures men to her by transforming into a seductive beautiful lady & once she has the upper hand of her victim,she will transform into her hideous self & drain their life force from them, often gutting them in the process.

 Shocked Shocked Shocked

I need me some Sam and Dean Winchester ASAP. Cheesy

I am not the darkness, I am the light;
Brilliant, blinding and infinite.
Stare in awe and know beyond doubt;
It is not the darkness you should fear.
Level 2 Contributor
Posts: 12

« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2009, 04:24:49 am »

Lol Talus, but it's true...google them. Malay Peninsula (malaysia,singapore,indonesia & thailand) is very renowned for it's supernatural beings/myths & legends. Penanggalan,jerangkung,pontianak,kuntilanak,nang nak,gin/genie,toyol,were-tigers,spirit keepers & many many more...
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