Is the universe an “empty space with a few widely scattered specks” or is it a space full of cosmic primordial energy? For the technician of physics, whose thinking has been shaped by mechanistic philosophy, his universe is crumbling under his feet. There is no room for the life process in the mechanistic “Big Bang” universe. More than that, the practical effect of this view of nature is destructive. Terrified by the vibrant life of the universe, the mechanistic physics has abandoned reality and withdraw into an ivory tower of mathematical symbols. 
“The mechanist cannot be anything but conservative or reactionary. He may regard his attitudes and intentions in whatever light he pleases; but the essence of his thinking is to overlook developments, to misunderstand or hate the living organism, and therefore to seek a substitute in rigid principles.” 
“The essence of life is to function, and therefore it is antagonistic to any rigidity. Nature knows no bureaucracy. Natural laws are functional, and not mechanistic. Even where the law of mechanistics is valid, nature abounds with variations.” 
Pardon the capitalization which follows, but it comes from Wilhelm Reich (image at top, left) himself:
THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS “EMPTY SPACE.” THERE EXISTS NO “VACUUM.” SPACE REVEALS DEFINITE PHYSICAL QUALITIES. THESE QUALITIES CAN BE OBSERVED AND DEMONSTRATED; SOME CAN BE REPRODUCED EXPERIMENTALLY AND CONTROLLED. IT IS A WELL-DEFINED ENERGY THAT IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE PHYSICAL QUALITIES OF SPACE. THIS ENERGY HAS BEEN TERMED “COSMIC ORGONE ENERGY.”
The theoretical supposition of an “ether” continues to be valid. The phenomena in the “vacuum” must agree with the qualities that had to be ascribed to the ether in order to explain the functions of field actions in space, such as gravity, light, attraction at a distance, “transmission of heat from the sun to the earth,” etc. “The negative result of the Michelson-Morley experiment, which was designed to demonstrate the ether, must be comprehended. The premises that led to the performance of the Michelson-Morley experiment rest on incorrect assumptions.” 
Wilhelm Reich disagreed with conclusions drawn from the Michelson-Morley experiment, as do I, but for a different reason. For Reich, the problem with Michelson-Morley “was the assumption that the ether is at rest; the earth, accordingly, moves through a stationary ether. This assumption is clearly proven incorrect by observation of the atmospheric orgone. If the ‘ether’ represents a concept pertaining to the cosmic orgone energy, it is not stationary, but moves more rapidly than the globe of the earth. The relation of the earth’s sphere to the surrounding cosmic orgone ocean is not that of a rubber ball rolling on stagnant water, but of a rubber ball rolling on progressing water waves. Thus the first assumption of the Michelson experiment becomes invalid.” 
(My own disagreements with the conclusions of Michelson-Morley have been summarized in “Our Friend, The Ether (Part 6)”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog entry of October 19, 2013.)
Wilhelm Reich further criticized assumptions of the Michelson-Morley experiment: “Orgonomic observations make it essential to separate, within the function of ‘light,’ the ‘lumination’ from the ‘excitation,’ which is propagated through space with the ‘speed of light.’ Light, accordingly, does not move at all but is a local effect of orgone lumination. Thus the second premise of the Michelson experiment becomes invalid, if one accepts — as one is forced to do — the clear-cut orgonomic observations in nature. I refer here to the orgonomic lumination effect in high vacuum, to the phenomena of ‘dawn,’ to the aurora borealis, to the corona of the sun, the luminating ring of Saturn, etc. If ‘light’ is due to local orgone lumination and does not ‘travel through space’ at all, it is quite understandable that in the Michelson experiment no phase difference could be observed in the light beams which were ‘sent’ in the direction of the ether ‘drag’ and perpendicular to it.” 
For many of the 19th-century physicists, The Ether was static. For Reich, The Ether was dynamic. Scottish mathematical physicist James Clerk Maxwell, although not a believer in the static ether, did believe in a hyperspatial ether, and this is another reason why the Michelson-Morley experiment is inconclusive. “Which ‘ether’ are we talking about?” (to paraphrase Albert Einstein). Even if we grant that Michelson-Morley disproved the static ether, it did not disprove the dynamic ether. 
In my view however the static, dynamic, and anti-ether people all miss one key thing: The Ether is not material. It is not a “tenuous gas.” The Ether is immaterial – “immaterial” in the sense of a grade of substance subtler than our gross physical matter.
In the theosophical framework there are “Rounds.” The “Rounds” relate to various evolutionary cycles. The term “Round” denotes the cyclic passage of the Monad round the complete chain of seven globes. A round is a process in a planetary chain, according to which a life cycle or life-wave of souls or monads begins its evolutionary journey on the first and most subtle or spiritual of the series of seven globes; then finishing its evolution there, proceeds to the next, and so on, to the densest or most manifest globe (usually called globe D), which in our case is the gross, physical Earth. From there it proceeds on the ascending arc, through increasingly more ethereal globes. Each of these globes are in coadunition with the physical earth, though they are not in consubstantiation with it. Each of these stages is called a round.  
When the life wave has gone through all seven globes of the planetary chain, it has completed one planetary round or globe manvantara. 
Each new Round develops one of the compound elements known to science.  Ancient and medieval natural philosophers posited four basic elements: earth, air, fire, and water. We moderns tend to smile and say, “How quaint.” But think again. For “earth,” substitute “solid”; for “air” substitute “gas”; for “fire” substitute “heat”; for “water” substitute “liquid.” Their four basic elements thus become, solid, gas, heat, and liquid. The old-timers posited a fifth basic element as well: The Ether.
The first Round developed but one Element, and a nature and humanity in what may be called “one dimensional Space.” 
The second Round brought forth and developed two elements, Fire and Air, and its humanity was a two dimensional species in a strictly figurative sense. 
The centers of consciousness of the Third Round, destined to develop into humanity as we know it, arrived at a perception of the third element, Water. 
Those of the Fourth Round have added Earth as a state of matter to their stock. 
It will only be in the next, or Fifth Round, that the fifth element, Ether, will be as familiar to all people as Air is now. And only during that Round will those higher senses, the growth and development of which Ether subserves, be susceptible of complete expansion. A partial familiarity with the next characteristic of matter, permeability, which should develop concurrently with the sixth sense (let us call it normal clairvoyance), may be expected to develop at the proper period in the Fifth Round. “But with the new element [Ether] added to our resources in the next Round, permeability will become so manifest a characteristic of matter that its densest forms will seem to man’s perceptions no more obstructive than a thick fog.” 
The conditions of life and the elements themselves in the Sixth and Seventh Rounds are entirely outside of our present state of consciousness.  But we currently have been seeing glimmers of Fifth Round higher senses, the growth and development of which Ether subserves, as well as suggestions of the permeability of matter.
- During the “Philadelphia Experiment”, Al and Duncan Bielek came out of the shielded control room and saw on deck a scene of chaos. Besides the general pandemonium, they saw their brother Jim Bielek buried upright in a bulkhead. His head and shoulders were out of the steel bulkhead but the rest of him was inmeshed.  This suggests the permeability of matter.
- In 1979 a secret unit was established by the most gifted minds within the US Army. Defying all known accepted military practice they believed that a soldier could adopt the cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls and, perhaps most chillingly, kill goats just by staring at them. Entrusted with defending America from all known adversaries, they were the First Earth Battalion.  This again suggests the permeability of matter, a partial familiarity with which may be expected to develop at the proper period in the Fifth Round. The First Earth Battalion, despite mockery coming from some quarters, is ahead of its time in believing its soldiers could pass through walls.
——- Sources ——-
 Ether, God & Devil & Cosmic Superimposition, by Wilhelm Reich. Available as a Kindle e-book.
 “Rings and Rounds”. The Theosophical Glossary, by H.P. Blavatsky. Los Angeles: The Theosophy Company, 1973
 Theosophical Quarterly, Volume 8. By Theosophical Society in America. July 1903(?)