Dr. Herskowitz on Orgone Therapy

Article by Morton Herskowitz D.O.

Dr. Herskowitz on Orgone Therapy

Click here to listen to an audio recording by Dr. Morton Herskowitz speaking about psychiatric orgone therapy.

Lecture by Dr. Morton Herskowitz, March 18th, 2010.

The point of departure of psychiatric orgone therapy from conventional psychiatric therapy is our acknowledgment of the presence and function of character armoring.

Armoring is the eyes dulled, in a world which there is no escape.  Shoulders tighten and raise in fear, the neck stiffens in stubbornness, a belly tightens in apprehension. With chronic environmental insult, these become regular body costumes. Armoring is the bodies attempt to encompass anxiety, it inhibits the flow of the bodies natural grace and limits behavioral choices.

Orgonomy recognizes that except in the cases of infantile pathology, we are born with bodies of free flowing energy.  And as regular environmental influences impinge on us, we become physically and emotionally impaired. We are no longer able to respond to our environment in an open way, but in an inhibited predetermined manner according to how our armoring shapes our character.

We speak in terms of expansion and contraction and of the ability to hold a charge. Patients come to us with troubles and symptoms, depression, anxiety, physical pain, symptoms of psychosis, etc.  Of course our first duty to the patient is to attempt to alleviate the symptoms to the extent that we can.  In this attempt, we use whatever conventional therapies that might be useful, pharmacology, psychotherapy, etc.  But beyond the symptom alleviation, we appreciate the affect that the character armoring has had on symptom production, and this becomes the essence of our work.

Consequently, patients become aware that changes are being affected in their lives beyond the reduction of their symptoms.  The ability to affect these changes makes patients aware that something has happened in their therapy beyond the ordinary, and the therapist enjoy their choice of vocation.

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- who has written 16 posts on The Journal of Psychiatric Orgone Therapy.

Dr. Morton Herskowitz lives in Philadelphia, USA. He is an osteopath and practices Orgone Therapy that was developed by Wilhelm Reich. He was the last therapist trained by Wilhelm Reich personally. He was the president of the Institute Orgonomic Science and author of the book “Emotional Armor – an introduction to psychiatric Orgone therapy.

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The Living Body: Wilhelm Reich’s Influence on Contemporary Psychotherapies


In pursuing the development of psychosomatic medicine and an energetic model of health which respected the importance of psyche and soma equally, Wilhelm Reich created the foundation for what ultimately came to be known as the fields of Body Psychotherapy, Somatic Psychology and others.

Building upon the conference we presented in the summer of 2021, Wilhelm Reich and Psychoanalysis, the goal of this conference is to map the field of body-centered therapy today. Speakers from the Americas, Europe and Australia, representing Reich’s Orgone Therapy as well as a variety of schools which are heirs to Reich such as Radix, Bioenergetics, Biodynamic Therapy, Biosynthesis, Gestalt, Navarro, Core Energetics and other modalities based in important ways on his approach, will present and describe their respective theories, training processes and therapeutic methods.

Historians will present an overview of Reich’s evolution from psychoanalysis to character analysis, to the more body-centered character analytic vegetotherapy, and beyond.

By exploring this field through the common denominator, the theories and techniques developed by Wilhelm Reich, we hope to generate interaction and exchanges and highlight the similarities, differences and relationships between traditions.

With so many schools of therapy represented, there are bound to be some differences of opinion about theory and practice. By bringing them together, we hope to give participants a comprehensive overview of the field and build bridges between individuals and groups who have much in common and might benefit from direct, respectful interaction with one another.

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Wilhelm Reich – Founder of Orgone Therapy

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