A black-greased man, clad only in equally greasy, black underpants, creeping into a room through an open window that is the image many have of the Orang Minyak. Of course, for most, it is reinforced by the repeat watchings of P. Ramlee's 1956 classic Sumpah Orang Minyak (The Curse of the Oily Man).
Legend as reprised by the Malay hit movie has it that the orang minyak is a regular person, but is pursuing the dark arts. To complete this course of "learning" and for his ilmu (knowledge) to be "effective", the orang minyak is supposed to rape a certain number of virgins.
Different numbers of virgins needed have been bandied about, from one to 40 and 99. Some say that the numbers of virgins depended on the orang minyak's master, but luckily, the orang minyak has the ability to "recognise" real virgins.
According to another popular tale, the orang minyak became what it was because of a black magic ritual gone wrong, and it was only by raping the 40 virgins that he could break the dark spell binding him.
An Islamic faith healer from Kasturi Syifa says he has heard that if the orang minyak rapes the required number of virgins, he will get his wish granted some common wishes are to be good looking and to have the ability to sweet-talk and charm people.
"They say, the person made a deal with the devil," he adds.
He, however, insists that he does not believe in the orang minyak 100 per cent, as he has not come across one yet.
He points out that all the orang minyak that have been captured turned out to be either thieves or mental health patients.
Ustaz Ismail Kamus, an Islamic faith healer from Darussalam, explains that the orang minyak douse their body in oil to evade capture.
They cannot use violence and can only use their magic to evade capture, he adds, "It also keeps on coming back to the same place to taunt the people and show off its abilities'."
Although he has not met one personally, Ustaz Ismail believes that the orang minyak exists.
He notes, it would take a few months to learn the black magic, but once mastered, the orang minyak would be able to walk through walls and vanish into thin air. He adds, the orang minyak is also believed to be very agile and can get strength by sucking out the water from a banana bud (jantung pisang).