Re: “On this date in Maine history: March 8,” by Joseph Owen:

We appreciate your acknowledgment of this date and of some of Wilhelm Reich’s important contributions to the fields of psychoanalysis and body-oriented therapies; however, we must take issue with the repetition of baseless statements that Reich claimed the orgone energy accumulator could cure cancer or confer sexual potency. Attributing such statements to “newspaper reports” does not justify repeating these falsehoods. He made no such claims.

Users of the orgone accumulator were made aware in writing that it was an experimental device and that their use of it was part of an ongoing research project. Though the Food and Drug Administration investigated Reich for years, their own records show that no claim was ever made by any user of the orgone accumulator that they had been defrauded.

We would also wish to point out that the energy which Reich studied and called “orgone” is described by him as a ubiquitous force present throughout the universe, analogous in some ways with the vital life force called “chi” in Eastern medicine and philosophy. To describe orgone energy simply as the “energy of orgasms,” while perhaps technically accurate, is an unnecessarily provocative choice of words.

David Silver

Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust


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