Are there bathtubs in heaven?

April 19, 2007 | By | 1 Reply More

In an earlier post, I wondered how God is going to entertain his followers up in heaven for all eternity, especially those who enjoy the less ethereal forms of entertainment (like jet skis).  Now, my question is about hygiene. 

I occasionally look after my neighbor’s two dogs.  Recently, after walking the dogs for about an hour, I noticed that the bottoms of the dogs’ feet were cleaner than the bottoms of my shoes, even though I had stayed on relatively clean sidewalks and the dogs had wandered all over the place — through yards, flower patches, leaves, weeds, etc.  This caused me to wonder why dogs — indeed, all animals except humans — stay surprisingly clean, despite having no access to indoor plumbing.  Why do we humans — built, the Bible says, in God’s image — need so much papaphernalia to stay clean, while other animals do not?  I’m not talking about cosmetics — though that subject is certainly ripe for discussion (if you have ever seen the cosmetics section of a major department store, you know what I’m talking about).  I am also not talking about clothing — the fact that animals (dogs, cats, cows, horses, etc.) can go through all four seasons in Wisconsin without ever needing to shop for a down parka or a pair of sandals, but plenty of humans can’t.  Yet we are, the Fundies say, perfectly designed in God’s image.

Yeah, right. 

OK, so let’s talk about bathing.  For example, consider this thought experiment:  let a dog and a four-year-old child play in the same backyard for an hour, and see which one comes back cleaner.  I challenge any of you to identify a child who would return cleaner that the dog.

Before anyone points out that animals *stink*, let me point out that if humans go without bathing, then we will stink even more than most other animals.  Indeed, my neighbors’ two dogs can go without bathing for a week or longer and still smell fine, but I challenge you to identify any human for whom the same is true.

Which brings me back to the title of this post:  are there bathtubs in heaven?  I shudder to think what heaven would smell like after an few thousand years if nobody ever takes a bath.

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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (1)

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  1. Erika Price says:

    Actually, the possibility exists that we get so dirty because we bathe so often. Soaps and shampoos strip our bodies of the natural oils that keep our skin and hair supple, and so our bodies respond by kicking oil production into overdrive, thus requiring us to bathe daily to get rid of that excess oil, and on and on. This makes sense when you consider that most Blacks, who typically have much drier hair, tend to shampoo only once a week or less depending on their hair type, and have no problem with smell and oil by doing so.

    I would suspect that if you take up the habit of using shampoo twice during a shower (lather, rinse, repeat), you'll notice after a while that you need to use shampoo twice in order to feel clean, for the same reason. A small minority of people (mostly women) have adopted the "poo-free" method, replacing shampoo with baking soda until, eventually, oil production slows down and they allegedly don't need to lather their hair at all. I've never tried to put this theory to the test, though…

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