Will we need Treadmills in Heaven?
I’ve been working out the past few weeks and I’ve gotta say that exercise and I have a HUGE love/hate relationship. I like feeling strong and healthy, but I’m not a huge fan of consistent exercise and healthy eating (I love me some TV and a carton of Hershey’s Whoppers). Considering this, I’ve wondered today – “Will we need treadmills in Heaven?”
I know, I know – if you hate running like I do your first response is, “Treadmills in Heaven? That sounds a little more like Hell to me.” I think overcoming our bodies or our “natural man” – our urges, appetites, laziness and so forth is a key component to our mortal experience. So I wonder, if we don’t overrule our cravings for our weekly carton of Whoppers here in mortality . . . . will we still want them in the next life and will our immortal backsides reflect giving into that indulgence?
Spirit vs. Body
In essence – this life is very much about overcoming our baser appetites and passions and choosing the greater things.
Man’s earthly existence is but a test as to whether he will concentrate his efforts, his mind, his soul, upon things which contribute to the comfort and gratification of his physical nature, or whether he will make as his life’s pursuit the acquisition of spiritual qualities.
“Every noble impulse, every unselfish expression of love; every brave suffering for the right; every surrender of self to something higher than self; every loyalty to an ideal; every unselfish devotion to principle; every helpfulness to humanity; every act of self-control; every fine courage of the soul, undefeated by pretense or policy, but by being, doing, and living of good for the very good’s sake—that is spirituality.” 8
Generally there is in man a divinity which strives to push him onward and upward. We believe that this power within him is the spirit that comes from God. Man lived before he came to this earth, and he is here now to strive to perfect the spirit within. At sometime in his life, every man is conscious of a desire to come in touch with the Infinite. His spirit reaches out for God. This sense of feeling is universal, and all men ought to be, in deepest truth, engaged in the same great work—the search for and the development of spiritual peace and freedom. 9
The choice is given, whether we live in the physical world as animals, or whether we use what earth offers us as a means of living in the spiritual world that will lead us back into the presence of God.
~ “Chapter 2: The Dual Nature of Man,” Teachings of Presidents of the Church: DavidO. McKay, (2003)
We have our mortal experience when our bodies and spirits are united to learn this self mastery . . . but eventually, time will run out.
The Perfect Body?
According to the scriptures, when we die our bodies and spirits are separated (this is known as physical death) – but are again reunited in the resurrection when our bodies will be restored to their perfect frames.
44 Now, this restoration shall come to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, both the wicked and the righteous; and even there shall not so much as a hair of their heads be lost; but every thing shall be restored to its perfect frame, as it is now, or in the body, and shall be brought and be arraigned before the bar of Christ the Son, and God the Father, and the Holy Spirit, which is one Eternal God, to be judged according to their works, whether they be good or whether they be evil. ~Alma 11:44
So yes – my body will be perfected. I won’t have my bum shoulder anymore, or my stinking hip and knee issues – my legs will be the same length (maybe I’ll be 5’8″ again!), my dad will have all of his hair and his original nose (will I recognize him?) and my friend who suffered paralysis in a body surfing accident will walk again (yay!). This perfect body stuff is great!
However, we also know that whatever intelligence, opinions, addictions and so forth that we gain in this life will also carry on with us in the next.
Whatsoever intelligence we attain in this life will rise with us in the resurrection, D&C 130:18–19
So, how perfect will this perfect body really be? Sure – it’ll be fully functional (for which I am grateful). . . . but will my body only be perfected to whatever healthy level I achieved in this life? I’ll have all of my hair – and my limbs will work properly . . . but if I had weight issues in life – will I still struggle with those in death? Or perhaps my body will look better if my spirit does (meaning, we look better if we were extra good people here on Earth)? Will I still want my Whoppers even after I die? And will I still need to learn how to control the appetites and passions that I experience in this life in the next? If so – what will that look like, what will it feel like . . . . and – will I need a treadmill?