Reichian therapy and "armoring"

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Reichian therapy and "armoring"

Postby Escarabajo » Fri Dec 05, 2008 6:46 am

Hi All,
I have read that I. Regardie was very involved with Reichian therapy. I have also read some of C Hyatt's stuff who also seems to have been a firm believer in this. Yet I see almost no other references to this sort of practice. It seems almost nobody calls themselves a Reichian therapist.

Is there a general conscensus on the concept of muscular "armoring" and needing therapeutic massage to fix things up?
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Postby Aum418 » Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:27 am

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* The Journal of Thelemic Studies: http://www.thelemicstudies.com *
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Postby gurugeorge » Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:42 pm

Hehe, that "Let me google that for you" thing is hilarious :)
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Postby Escarabajo » Fri Dec 05, 2008 5:31 pm



Again, I am asking for a conscensus among forum participators... :roll:

Has anyone here undergone it?
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Postby Bryan » Fri Dec 05, 2008 9:35 pm

93,

http://letmegooglethatforyou.com/?q=has ... therapy%3F

We're all sarcastic dingleberries here.
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Postby gurugeorge » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:35 am

Escarabajo wrote:


Again, I am asking for a conscensus among forum participators... :roll:

Has anyone here undergone it?


Hehe, don't worry, it's a good enough question, and I think the answer is no, it's not really an orthodox part of the Thelemic Magick or practice handed down by AC.

EXCEPT that Asana, properly conquered, gives the body, for the time of practice, rest and ease from "character armour".

However, I think all those psychologist guys are generally respected by Thelemites. I know Marcelo Motta spoke of Freud, Jung and Reich approvingly, and thought it was shameful how badly Reich was treated. What they were doing isn't too dissimilar from "smoothing out the complexity of the folds", except in Magick, it doesn't just happen on the planes called "psychological", there are more "levels" of the person's being involved. Nowadays, Transpersonal Psychology really takes the mantle over from those guys, and is quite in tune with Magick and Mysticism (or at least, a rationalist approach to Magick and Mysticism).
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Postby sethur » Sun Dec 07, 2008 2:22 pm

gurugeorge wrote:Hehe, don't worry, it's a good enough question, and I think the answer is no, it's not really an orthodox part of the Thelemic Magick or practice handed down by AC.


So what? This is Thelema, not Crowleyanity
.

EXCEPT that Asana, properly conquered, gives the body, for the time of practice, rest and ease from "character armour".


No it doesn't. Character armour is psychological, not physical. Body armour, on the other hand, is a post-Reichian concept pioneered by such people as Lowen. and dealt with by release exercises such as Bioenergetics and Rolfing. Asana locks the body and won't do anything to release body armour. Such practices are highly useful for Tantra and I recommend them, but a lot of post-Reichians quieten down the Reich connection so look them up individually, especially Alexander Lowen, Ida Rolfe and their disciples.
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Postby gurugeorge » Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:29 am

sethur wrote:
gurugeorge wrote:Hehe, don't worry, it's a good enough question, and I think the answer is no, it's not really an orthodox part of the Thelemic Magick or practice handed down by AC.


So what? This is Thelema, not Crowleyanity


Oh I didn't mean to imply that people interested in Thelema shouldn't try Reichian therapy or anything like that, just that in terms of the OP's post, it's not really an "orthodox" part of Thelemic training.

EXCEPT that Asana, properly conquered, gives the body, for the time of practice, rest and ease from "character armour".


No it doesn't. Character armour is psychological, not physical. Body armour, on the other hand, is a post-Reichian concept pioneered by such people as Lowen. and dealt with by release exercises such as Bioenergetics and Rolfing. Asana locks the body and won't do anything to release body armour. Such practices are highly useful for Tantra and I recommend them, but a lot of post-Reichians quieten down the Reich connection so look them up individually, especially Alexander Lowen, Ida Rolfe and their disciples.


Interesting. As an aside, over the years I've gotten very interested in "qi" (chi), via some interest in Taijiquan (Tai Chi). I'm on a mailing list that discusses "qi" phenomena in Western biomechanical terms; according to these people, "qi" has a lot to do with the fascia - basically yoga, qigong, tai chi, etc., are a lot to do with gaining subtle controls over the body's fascia. In a martial context, this is combined with clever leverage to produce the highly unusual, relaxed power characteristic of the internal martial arts (it's pretty rare to see or feel the real thing even in China, most in this field are con-artists or deluded, with stiff shoulders, using muscle and structure). In terms of health, the exercises of qigong and yoga stretch and manipulate the fascia which seems to have some beneficial effect on the immune system (the fascia apparently contains certain structures that are involved with the body's immune system - this is fairly recent research, a byproduct of research into acupuncture, which is also related).

In terms of psychology, I think there's a strong connection between this "qi" business and what Rolfing does - and also Feldenkrais is in the same area (Moshe Feldenkrais speaks somewhere of Jigoro Kano doing some "qi tricks" similar to those you will see in the Chinese Martial Arts). Fascinating little corner of study - I think all these things are somewhat inter-related.

I'd disagree that Asana "locks" the body though; it's rather that the sense of having a body at all simply disappears. Maybe it's another approach, but I've never found AC's "hold the body tense" idea anywhere else in Asian schools (not in the Buddhisms nor Yoga nor Daoism that I've canvassed). They all deal with relaxation and disappearance of the body sense. What they do sometimes speak of is a moment prior to this disappearance when it feels as if the body is rigid ("iron mountain"), but actually it isn't, it's a body illusion that comes prior to the disappearance. (e.g. cf. Katsuki Sekida's Zen Training where he mentions this transition from "iron mountain" to "off sensation"). I suspect it's also related to the "qi" (i.e. in these biomechanical terms, the fascia).
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Postby Scarecrow » Mon Dec 08, 2008 2:13 pm

I tried Reichian therapy after having read so much positive things from Regardie, Hyatt, Wilson, etc.

The therapist I went to was a very stiff older lady without a trace of vim and vigour. I give her the benefit and say that it might have been her style, but it didn't connect well with me. I suppose I was expecting someone who had devoted their career time to freeing emotional blockage to be... emotional. That definitly could be a mistake on my part.

After going 6 times (I know, I know)... I found that she was just having me lay on a bed and breath, and spin my eyeballs. Useful things I've continue to do, but didn't need her there charging me for them.

My reasons for going were an interest in Orgone Energy (which she would share nothing about), and Armouring. I was hoping we'd get into some physical techniques for immediate unlocking of some armoured areas. Turns out that MAY have been coming down the line (Reich was a proponenet, I believe, of starting with the head and moving downwards to the throat, stomach, etc.), but not after a long process and many many paychecks.

When you are in the low to middle income bracket, therapy, even something exciting like Reichian Therapy is tough to tango with for the long haul, where it probably does the most good.

I hope this was helpful, or at least got you thinking of the amount of time, and especially money, you are willing to commit to researching if Reichian Therapy works for you. Personally I'd love to find out if seeing the earth from space would send a surge into my Leary-esque circuits, however, it's more than a wish than a real goal...
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Re: Reichian therapy and "armoring"

Postby LD330 » Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:38 pm

I liked Christopher Hyatt's book Undoing Yourself With Energized Meditation. That's actually one of my favorite "occult" books, the first two methods (I never really tried the third) were very effective. I found this book about Reichian therapy from a guy who claimed he was the one who really wrote Undoing Yourself and I've been using the breathing and daily exercises to some pretty strong effects (stronger than Undoing Yourself):

http://reichiantherapy.net/book%20in%20 ... 20Book.pdf
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Re: Reichian therapy and "armoring"

Postby Student210 » Sat Oct 05, 2013 8:41 am

Great share, ld330 - looking forward to reading that.
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Re: Reichian therapy and "armoring"

Postby Hermes » Sat Oct 05, 2013 1:28 pm

Escarabajo wrote:Hi All,
I have read that I. Regardie was very involved with Reichian therapy. I have also read some of C Hyatt's stuff who also seems to have been a firm believer in this. Yet I see almost no other references to this sort of practice. It seems almost nobody calls themselves a Reichian therapist.

Is there a general conscensus on the concept of muscular "armoring" and needing therapeutic massage to fix things up?


Yes Regardie was very involved, because he... was not so in martial arts or other sports(Crowley was a high level mountaineer and poet...) or art. :lol: That is just a personal opinion of course. I'll try to explain why i say so.

If you want to get a good idea at least read a few books of each main style and practice them separately a year or two. Then you will be able to understand much better the real specificities of each styles, and you will be able to choose a specific style to further investigate if you wish so with all the cards in hands. You can use the elements and occult correspondances to understand better these things once you have solid basics.

All the psychoanalytical styles will attack the armor. Reich specificity is it includes physical "attack". But in my opinion, it is way softer than the techniques used in hatha yoga, qi gong, martial arts or even...dancing ! For the specific question you're asking, Reich is indeed a complete system by itself. But if you want to go far it is not enough. Because such a combination of complete(pluridisciplinar) psychoanalysis+complete "qi" work while trying to stay "scientific", this very combination contains its own limit by itself... It is more built for the regular guy than for the dedicated initiate.

In my opinion, the best way to destroy the armor and keep it loose while you work hard on magick, is to work the body hard in a balanced way. By balanced way, i mean you must balance the elements and activate them fully. For this some sports or arts are better than others, but almost all of them can have this effect if practiced at high level intelligently. Why i see martial arts as superior is because each styles emphasize an element, yet all are in each. Thus you have a really awesome laboratory to perform alchemy and the qi will have so much work to do that it will become impssible for it to stagnate. The armor will have nothing to hold on to.

Probably a similar thing can be performed with music and dancing if you rpactice seriously. You should add at least hatha yoga and/or qi gong though in this case to work the body hard and build fire and earth(muscles and nerves on physical plane). Hatha Yoga, like martial arts, have the advantage of working the body hard in all the directions. It is very unique. When you manage to anchor your art with the alchemical elements and your magick practice you will be light years beyond any psychoanalytical practice. Not that you wont analyse anything, but you will only do so on higher planes(great work), while keeping the lower under instant control and mastery.

I think that's why Crowley didnt need to investigate more psychoanalysis, it is because both his mountaineer/poet and magick skils were very high , so he mastered equally all planes and nothing would get in the way.

Concerning massage i know very little but it seems interesting. To learn i would ask to chinese masters cause they seem very advanced in subtle medecine.

Rereading all this it seems i am a little biased by personal preferences. What is still true though is concerning the art aspect. How much physically manifest your art might not be as important as performing an art seriously, and anchoring it like i said, with the elements and magick. For this surely can help anyone, and Crowley himself put mastery of an art as a part of the AA syllabus(for the 4=7).
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