Archive for August, 2010

Why am I interested in Wilhelm Reich instead of Sigmund Freud for instance? Reich studied under Freud at the Vienna institute and fundamentally believed in the libido theory, but came to different conclusions I started on a therapist’s couch when I was 18 and around and around I went talking about things in the theoretical sense with no real feeling attached to my experiences. At the time, I felt like I was living in a paper bag that I could not break free of. I had all these rules that I lived by, they were my means to control my world that always seemed to be out of my control. At 19, my goal in life was to be “Happy”, to fall in Love, to feel a connection with other people and with Life in general. I wanted to fit in and feel apart of rather than always separate looking from the outside in.
We think of Orgone and usually we talk about a”>cloudbuster. or a pyramid, but rarely do we examine Reich’s original application. Reich defined Orgone as “A subtle biophysical energy which permeates all living things.” It Permeates all space in different concentrations, taken into the body through breathing.” I spent a couple of years on a Sigmund Freud couch with zero results, I did not find “Happiness there” or any relief from the immense pain of isolation and loneliness. I rejected Freud at that time, not understanding that there was a man named Reich who took Freud’s theories into a different direction. Wilhelm Reich was essentially black-balled by the mainstream Psycho-analytic medicine; There was very little mention of him in school other than that he was a student of Freud. The center or Reich’s work is re-connecting the mind and the body. “The’s Body’s outward appearance is an accurate reflection of what is happening on the inside,” said Reich. There is a basic mistake in idea, “I think,…I am.” You can’t change your thoughts at a basic level without change in your body, in what you do.
Reich wanted a full-body emotional response to life. If you cover yourself up, you may deaden pain, but you also rob yourself of full joy.
The function of emotional Armoring is to keep explosive emotions on the inside and to ward off the emotions of others. We tighten up so as to limit feeling and energy. Our minds seek to control because we are afraid. Character Armoring is a sum total of of the muscular attitudes which a person develops as a defense against the breakthrough of emotions, especially anxiety, rage, and sexual excitation. Freud would bypass the body and study and examine dreams and the sub-concious. Reich saw the resistances itself as the center of the work. He sought to break the body armoring down and integrate the body and mind into one wholistic system. In Reich’s world meanings were secondary to change in somatic functioning or a reduction of systemic tension in the body. The differences between Freud and Reich could be termed Reactionary and Revolutionary. Freud saw our basic nature as evil that needed to be controlled. Man left to his own devices would rape and pillage without external rules and regulations. Reich on the otherhand saw the need to do evil as repressed desire that was simply a layer of energy that needed expression. If the armoring was effectively broken down, the desire to express violently would diminish and be replaced by feeling of connection and love for fellow man.
The Natural Man was a Revolutionary that sought Freedom and liberty above all else. He had a high capacity for love, empathy and work without the need to be motivated by external means. His or her body was open, fluid and dynamic capable of expressing full orgiastic functioning.
The reason, I started therapy was that I was unable to feel or express emotion in the extreme. This extreme sense of dis-connection was the fuel to search for all sorts of un-orthodox approaches to become whole in body, mind and soul. There are basically two responses our nervous system has; either relax and open to energy or constrict and tighten. Constriction and tightening is not inherently bad. All movement is fundamentally the interplay between opening and closing or tightening and relaxing. The problems arise when we tighten and refuse to open again or open in measured terms regulating the flow of energy. The goals I had at 19 are still the same today. I want to be happy in the sense of the Declaration of independence; The pursuit of Happiness which has a more specific meaning now that it did at 19. Happiness is inclusive of material, spiritual and emotional. It is basically having my cake and eating it too. It is hedonism and responsibility rolled up in one unified theory of all things.