Traditional rendering of the creature
Map of India
|First Sighting||Treta Yuga (3100 BC)|
|Last Sighting||Present Day|
|Country||India and Thailand|
In India, stories continue to tell of thousand years old creatures known as the Pishacha (पिशाच), often translated as "flesh eaters."
They are described as having red, swollen eyes and bulging veins, being active in late hours of night. Pishacha aren't exactly demons, since the ancient Vedas place them lower than rakshasas, or demons, describing them as far more malignant as the vilest of malevolent beings. The Pishacha are believed to be born of Krodha (क्रोध), literally meaning "anger" or "wrath" in Sanskrit.
Thriving in darkness, Pishacha feed on the energy of humans, such as insanity or the corruption of innocence.
Piśācas have the power to assume different forms at will, and may also become invisible. They feed on human energies, possessing human beings and altering their thoughts, causing mental abnormalities, insanity and even suicide.
These possessions are still believed to occur today. Anyone who sees a pishacha is doomed to die within nine months, according to some myths.
Haunting channel grounds and cross-roads, Indians in fear of the creatures offer rice at a cross-road in a ceremony that is repeated for days.
Mantras and protective chants are also used as protection from the spirits. The term Pishacha is occasionally used in regards to almost all evil spirits in India.