Although he may not be well known today, Wilhelm Reich and his ideas are some of the most intriguing that you are likely to encounter. They are also controversial and border on the outlandish.
Today, these concepts enjoy cultlike status. More than half a century after his death, many people are continuing Reich’s work to tap into the natural energy of not just the Earth but the universe itself.
10 Weird Examples Of Pseudoscientific Technology
10 The Connection To Sexual Energy And Ancient Wisdom
Born in 1897 in what is now Ukraine, Austrian doctor Wilhelm Reich was an ardent subscriber to the ideas of Sigmund Freud. So, it might not be surprising that the roots of orgone energy can be found in sex and sexuality. This was something that Reich was prone to speak about openly in the 1930s while formulating his ideas. And we should remember that this was not how most people of that era conducted themselves.
In fact, it was from his initial research into sexual energies that he began studying ancient spiritual ideas and apparent esoteric wisdom. In turn, he started to believe deeply in ancient “universal energies.” Ultimately, this would morph into what he would eventually call orgone energy.
In 1939, before he developed such ideas, Reich, like many other European scientists of the era, left for the United States. He did so to escape the merciless grip of the Nazi regime. However, his work just prior to leaving Europe put him under scrutiny. We will turn our attention to that subject in a moment.
Around a decade after Reich’s death, his work enjoyed renewed interest among liberal movements of the 1960s. This was particularly so with the student populations of the time. Although this interest largely faded as the 1960s ended, Reich has retained a cultlike status among many groups in the decades since.
9 He Was Labeled ‘Dangerous’ By Other Scientists
Before arriving in America, Reich had spent the second half of the 1930s working on what he would label “bion experiments.” These experiments involved Reich examining the cells of a variety of items ranging from vegetation to animal tissues. He even conducted the same tests with metals and other solids.
He discovered a blue aura—particularly when heating such cells. He described this as the natural energy between life and nonlife. Reich labeled these strange blue auras “bions.” In addition, he claimed to have witnessed similar red energies, which he connected to the cause of some cancers.
After this research, many of Reich’s fellow scientists distanced themselves from him. Some even went as far as to call him “dangerous.” Needless to say—rightly or wrongly—this stayed with him for the rest of his life.
8 The Link Between Bions, Megalithic C, And The Color Blue
Perhaps one of the most speculative aspects of orgone energy, especially when we consider Reich’s intense interest in the wisdom of the ancients, is an apparent link of the blue energy of bions and the “natural harmony” of the Earth. In their book Civilization One, Christopher Knight and Alan Butler say that this is “megalithic C.” On the modern scale, this is C-sharp (specifically, ever so slightly above).
Looking at the frequency range and the electromagnetic spectrum, Knight and Butler claimed that similarities existed between the color blue and the frequency for C-sharp. Taking it further, they highlighted how certain life-giving aspects of our world, such as water and the atmosphere in the sky, are also blue.
Given that Reich’s bions were also blue, does this somehow lend credibility to his work? And what should we make of Knight and Butler’s research and suggestions?
7 The Initial Development Of Orgone Energy
The results of his bion research ultimately led Reich to what he called “orgone energy.” He claimed that this natural life energy was known to the ancients.
Perhaps the best way for us in the modern world to understand orgone energy is to imagine how the Force is described in the Star Wars films. However, unlike Star Wars, Reich stated that the driving force of this natural energy was of a sexual nature.
Incidentally, it was partly due to these claims of sexual energy that many began to attack Reich’s ideas even more. Some even declared that his research was a front for a sex cult. Perhaps of more concern to Reich back then were the accusations that he was a communist looking to attack the American way.
6 The Damaging Shunning By Albert Einstein
Perhaps the most damaging criticism received by Reich was the shunning by Albert Einstein. Reich believed that Einstein’s acceptance would pave the way for widespread exposure for Reich’s own work. However, it was not to be.
The strange connection between the two scientists revolved around several meetings to discuss Reich’s work. One time, Reich gave Einstein an accumulator with which he could conduct further experiments based on his own research. This research centered on the use of electromagnetic energy (orgone) and how it might be used in a variety of ways ranging from medical to military.
Einstein determined that Reich’s theories and accumulator devices were not scientifically sound. What’s more, Einstein wrote back to inform Reich of this. Although Reich continued to write to Einstein with updates on tests, Einstein no longer responded. Perhaps through frustration, Reich wrote one last time that he was about to publish their initial letters.
Finally, Einstein responded to this threat. He stated in no uncertain terms that his name should not be used to promote Reich’s research as Einstein believed that Reich’s work was far from proven fact.
10 Pseudoscientists And Their Bizarre Theories
5 The Orgone Accumulator
Developing his research further as well as tapping into this natural energy, Reich looked to collect it. To do so, he built a device called an orgone accumulator.
The accumulator was a box that a person would sit inside. As the individual did so, orgone energy would concentrate on the box and into the person. In part, this occurred due to the organic/nonorganic layering of the walls and roof of the box.
As a result, the person would experience an increase in “blue bions.” According to Reich, this halted and even cured disease—including cancer. We will return to these claims shortly as they ultimately proved to be the undoing of Reich.
Whether his claims were true or not, many people have since continued research into orgone energy. Indeed, many people fully subscribe to the apparent reality and benefit of orgone energy, whatever that might be.
Another device by Reich to tap into orgone energy was a cloudbuster. Like the accumulators, the cloudbusters were made of materials that conducted orgone energy.
In theory, a cloudbuster would manipulate the orgone energy overhead to form clouds and bring rain. For the device to work, the cloudbuster was usually set up in water. Theoretically, this would bring the water out of the atmosphere.
Perhaps of most interest, the records of Reich’s experiments suggest that the cloudbuster devices did work. However, these claims remain subject to fierce debate.
We should remember that many governments research how to change the weather—and they do so with varying degrees of success. Although Reich’s claims should be taken with a grain of salt, the general notion of weather control is not as outlandish as it might first appear.
3 The Destruction Of Reich’s Research
Officially, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) went after Reich due to his claims regarding the accumulator and the curing of disease. They forced Reich to stop declaring that illnesses could be cured by using the device.
In addition, the authorities got an injunction to prevent him from moving any of his equipment over state borders. Essentially, he was grounded where he was.
When one of Reich’s associates defied the injunction, Reich was arrested. A decision was made by the authorities to have all his orgone devices and paperwork destroyed. Anything that mentioned orgone energy was taken. Even more bizarrely, the burning of this material was done in full view of the public.
Reich died in prison in 1957 at age 60. Whether the reaction to his work was justified remains debated by many people today.
2 The Mistaken Communist Connection
In the final weeks of 1941, the FBI suspected that a mysterious man named William Reich was handing out communist leaflets in the New Jersey area. However, when federal agents moved in to make the arrest in December of that year, they mistakenly arrested Wilhelm Reich.
As part of the FBI’s search of Reich’s home, all his notes and books were examined. However, he refused to answer any questions and remained in FBI custody for three weeks. The agency soon realized their error, and Reich was released without charge. As far as the record says, he was free to go about his business.
Despite the error, Reich likely remained in the FBI’s files. When he began to make waves with the FDA, it didn’t do the FBI any harm that he should end up in such a situation. Perhaps also of interest, Reich suggested to many people that Einstein had withdrawn his interest in working with Reich due to outside influences. Quite likely, at least to Reich’s mind, the FBI was the prime suspect.
1 The UFO Connection
Mainly during his tests with the cloudbuster devices, Reich claimed that he had witnessed UFOs overhead. This happened on numerous occasions. He documented each of these sightings and informed the local air force base. They eventually responded by asking Reich to complete a survey on such matters, which he did.
In addition to aliens looking at the recent world wars and the use of nuclear weapons, Reich suggested that his own orgone devices could get the attention of such cosmic navigators. In addition, he believed that these space visitors would choose to vanish if he pointed his device in their direction.
Perhaps of interest to UFO researchers in the modern era are Reich’s claims that these strange crafts manipulated the energy of the universe itself. Furthermore, he said that they would ride “waves” that they had created. Decades later, whistleblower Bob Lazar made similar claims as to how such vehicles travel after claiming that he worked with recovered alien crafts.
10 Truly Bizarre Pseudoscientific Fields