It’s definitely something that Filipinos, like would tell people about, um, because it’s like, witchcraft was a really big thing in the Philippines, or it still is a really big thing in the Philippines, so people who are like mangkukulam like are, people who like put hexes or curses on you, and like, sometimes these people are like shapeshifters or like, have like made deals with the devil and stuff, so. Still, there are like, there are people who will be like don’t go near her she’s like, a mangkukulam and it’s mostly people who are like clinically insane and like, have attacked people but like, literally like, entities who use their energies towards evil intentions, like karmic energy, things like that.
Background: My informant, as is their family, is Filipino, and they speak Tagalog often with their parents and siblings. They recall their family telling them this story, as well as TV shows in the Philippines that dramatized creatures of Filipino Legend, as well as other Filipino supernatural events.
Context: This piece was collected in an in-person conversation in my apartment.
My thoughts: Based on the accused mangkukulam usually being a woman, this legend may have a similar function as North American legends concerning witches; that being, to demonize and punish women who don’t fit into the patriarchal role set out for them.