Generally, psychotherapy looks to work with the patient through his or her history, the stories that formed their life. Reich’s functional model offers another approach that is both simpler and deeper yet harder to teach. It is a way to describe the simultaneously identical activity of physical, psychic and emotional phenomena.

“Orgone therapeutic medicine does not attack memories but the present day anchorings of the historical experiences; thus it works with high-pitched realities, and not with shadows of memories from the past. A memory may or may not develop … It is of no therapeutic value if it does or not.” (J.O., 1986)

The underlying principle is that no matter how many different physical structures or behaviours life may manifest, the underlying functional laws remain the same. The simple analogy is that water can transform into a liquid, a gas (steam) or a solid (ice) and back again because its underlying nature remains the same. Nothing has changed except its energy state. These three different physical forms and their resultant behaviours – and structure is behaviour – are merely transformations of the same thing. When you understand functioning you understand that behaviours on the physical, emotional and mental realms are three manifestations of the same process/functioning. 

This simplifies the therapeutic process. We do not have to listen to, understand, discuss and interpret all the different emotional, psychic and physical problems a patient has, once we see that most of these problems have one functional source. In Functional Analysis, we do not diagnosis, interpret. We are not looking for what it means, we are interested in what it is! We analyse the patient’s functioning, especially the quality of the life force’s pulsation and the patient’s present moment experience of it. 

In this webinar case study material will be used to illustrate how we help the patient to organise their lived experiences by offering functional models about what might be happening: how they are functioning. The first benefit of this is that they get a clearer insight into how they are behaving and how they are participating in, even creating their life situations. The second benefit is that with this clarification comes better bordering, giving them another perspective on how to reorganise themselves in a more satisfying manner.