Through ritualistic practices and black magic a witch doctor can invoke the spirit and bind it to an owner.
A Toyol is used to run errands, create mischief, steal riches and (rarely) murder.
Toyol / Tuyul
Description: Sometimes described as goblin like, the Toyol more accurately has the appearance of a toddler, newborn or under developed baby, with green skin and red, clouded eyes. Sharp teeth dot the Toyol's mouth and the ears may end in points. They are hard to spot except under the guidance or aid of magic.
Toyol / Tuyul is the twisted spirit of a small child who had passed away before it could be born. Through ritualistic practices and black magic a witch doctor or shaman can invoke the spirit and bind it to an owner.
The Toyol is either bound to its reanimated body or to parts of it – the bones – or another object infused with 'corpse oil'.
A Toyol is mischievous yet childlike. Objects common to the pleasure and health of living children can be used as offerings to a Toyol, items such as milk, clothing, toys etc. but also small amounts of the owners blood and further mantras.
Toyols are created and used purely for selfish gains. They are often used to steal from a persons neighbours (but they only ever take half of ones possessions) or to inflict mischievous harm. Rarely is a Toyol capable of killing, although under some circumstances Toyol's have been to blame for murder.
If you suspect a Toyol from visiting you or your property you can distract them with children's toys or place sharp objects, such as needles or broken glass, near your valuables – a Toyol will always stay away from needles etc. out of fear of being pricked.
A Toyol can not stand its own reflection so mirrors can be placed as protection.
When not in use a Toyol is kept in a jar, urn or other such vessel and stored away until it is needed again.
Toyols can be passed down through generations of a family as a heirloom, they can be buried and laid to rest or allowed to roam free. If a Toyol is ever without a master they are no longer a danger and essentially become observers of the living, watching us go about our lives unhindered. However, and strangely, a Toyol will suck on the big toe of a sleeping person.
Different regions and communities may have varying details to their similar legends, such as the Philippines 'Tiyanak'.