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After-Death recovery is like recovery from a marathon

Posted on 16 November 2015, 11:24

As I see it, the biggest failure of organized religion is its teaching of a dichotomous afterlife.  Either you are judged righteous and go to a very humdrum heaven or you are judged wicked and go to a horrific hell.  There is no in-between state, though Catholics recognize purgatory, which is just as bad as hell, except that it is not eternal. Nor is there any period of adaptation or progression in the religious afterlife.  Modern revelation has attempted to correct this illogical and totally unjust thinking, but orthodoxy has ignored it and few have heard it.

As an analogy, relative to the adaptation period, let me suggest that you picture seven people on the starting line of a marathon.  These seven people represent humanity.  The first of our seven starters is an Olympic caliber runner, capable of covering the 26.2-mile distance at nearly 13 miles per hour and finishing in a little over two hours.  The second person is a fitness runner, more commonly called a “jogger.”  While physically fit, he or she will finish an hour or more behind the Olympic runner, covering about 7-8 mph per hour. So great is the distance between them that the Olympic runner will have had time to shower and have a full meal before the jogger crosses the finish line. 

The third person might be called a “plodder,” a somewhat less-dedicated jogger.  He or she is reasonably fit, but will take four to five hours to complete the marathon distance, moving along at 5-6 mph.  Then there is the “walker,” pumping along at a brisk 3-4 mph for the marathon distance and finishing between 6.5 and 8 hours. 

Our last three contestants are in the couch-potato (CP) category.  They do no exercise at all and are totally unprepared for the marathon challenge.  CP #1 is 20 pounds overweight, but he still has enough youthful vitality to endure some physical exertion. Although this person will have to stop and take some breaks along the way, walking most of it, he or she might be able to average close to 2-3 miles per hour and finish in 10-12 hours.

CP #2 is older, much more sluggish and overweight than CP #1, and will meander over the course while taking many more rest breaks along the way.  Sore muscles or joints combined with fatigue may very well result in this person abandoning the effort, but if he/she manages to finish, it will likely take 15-20 hours or more, not much faster than one mile per hour. 

And lastly we have CP #3, the grossly overweight and out-of-shape person who becomes exhausted after walking one city block.  This individual will struggle to cover one mile a day, if that, and may take a month to log in 26.2 miles, assuming his body holds up.    The Olympic runner will have finished when this person is only a mile or so into the 26.2 mile marathon distance.

Now, forget about athletic or physical fitness and attempt to put the range of running fitness to degrees of spiritual fitness.  Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, and the more virtuous and humble people take the place of the Olympic runner, while Adolph Hitler, Jack the Ripper, and other serial killers are the spiritual equivalent of couch potato #3.  In between we have various degrees of virtue and vice.  The average person today is probably somewhere between the brisk walker and couch potato #1 – in the 2-4 mph category, not especially virtuous but not full of vice, either.  Computer hackers, shoplifters, embezzlers, and scammers are the equivalent of couch potato #2, not quite down there with the serial killers.

Jump ahead to the finish line and picture the condition of each of the seven contestants, assuming that the couch potatoes were able to finish.  The Olympic runner recovers quickly, within a matter of minutes, breathing normally even in a matter of seconds.  Outside of a little muscle soreness, he or she will have little in the way of after effects. The jogger will take a little longer to feel normal and his/her body will be sore and stiff for up to a week.  The plodder might fall on the ground in complete exhaustion, taking an hour or more to feel halfway normal, and will also feel extremely sore or stiff for a week or more. The walker, assuming he/she held nothing in reserve, will be worn and weary and may struggle to get out of bed in the days following. 

But the couch potatoes may take days, weeks or months to recover, assuming that they gave it their all. Moreover, their unconditioned bodies may leave them with residual physical problems that may linger indefinitely after the race. 

Now, again, forget about the running experience and view this post-race condition as the adjustment required of the individual after death. Substitute spiritual consciousness for physical fitness.  The Mother Teresas and Gandhis of the world make a quick transition after death, quickly awakening and adjusting to the conditions of the spirit world, while, at the other extreme, the Hitlers and Jack the Rippers are so lacking in spiritual consciousness that they don’t even realize they are dead.  It is as if they are having a nightmare in which they are experiencing the pain and anguish which they inflicted on others during their lifetimes.  The nightmare could last years, decades, or even centuries in earth time.

The more average person – the one who developed limited spiritual consciousness while placing a higher value on materialistic possessions, though not doing significant harm to anyone – may flounder for several days or weeks in earth time after giving up the ghost, and may then remain in a stupor and require a period of convalescence before pursuing an active life on the Other Side, but this person’s “earthbound” ties will gradually be severed.. 

It is all a matter of degree, one’s “moral specific gravity” having as many variations as one’s fitness for a marathon.  If only religions would grasp this, they might stop losing members.  As Jesus said, there are “many mansions,” on that side, although “mansions” is a poor English translation for abodes.

Michael Tymn is the author of The Afterlife Revealed: What Happens After We Die is published by White Crow Books. His latest book, Resurrecting Leonora Piper: How Science Discovered the Afterlife is now available on Amazon and other online book stores.
His latest book Dead Men Talking: Afterlife Communication from World War I is published by White Crow Books.

Next blog post: November 30



Thank you for your comment.  Of course, “free will” is said to prevent intervention by spirits who might otherwise save us from ourselves.  Let me suggest Lord Dowding’s book, “The Dark Star,” concerning the various conflicts in messages and teachings.  That book is available from White Crow.

Thanks also to others for their comments.

Michael Tymn, Tue 24 Nov, 07:58

Discarnate entities provide us with a range of information regarding reincarnation, from one extreme to the other.  Some say that everyone reincarnates endlessly and others say that there is no reincarnation.  This could well come down to limited knowledge of communicating entities but we have no reliable way of determining if this is the case.

Having read many explanations of the reason for reincarnation, most of which centre on personal improvement and gaining experience, I am deeply puzzled. 

On this planet, I look around me.  I see a beautiful planet being trashed at an ever-increasing rate.  It is overpopulated, probably be a factor of five or more.  It is being irreversibly altered for the worse.  Climate change is hotly debated by vested interests and politicians.  (Fine, I’ll believe you – just tell me where the glaciers are going!!)  Widespread murder is committed on a daily basis by barbarians claiming to act for an imaginary deity.  (It must be noted that said deities are so weak as to be unable to act for themselves.)

It would appear that the discarnate realm is either unaware of what is happening in our here and now or is simply not interested.  They are big on the ‘personal development’ aspect and oblivious of all else.  One must wonder why.

Leslie Harris, Tue 24 Nov, 01:39


Go to the archives and see the second blog for April 2011, The Enigma of Reincarnation. As for The French Revelation, I can’t tell you what it says about reincarnation without digging into the book, which I don’t have time for right now. However, as indicated there are many mixed messages on the subject and they may be due in part to semantics and definition.  Personally, I believe reincarnation exists, but I doubt that it plays out in the way most people who believe in it think it does.  I am more inclined to the group soul theory.

Michael Tymn, Mon 23 Nov, 17:48

I have the kindle edition of The French Revelation, but have yet to start it (hopefully soon). May I ask you or anyone who might have finished reading it what, if anything, is mentioned about reincarnation?
I keep running into mixed messages from the various primary sources. My opinion is that, if the phenomenon is realistic to some (subjectively speaking), there are numerous other, more rational explanations such as the Akashic Records.
I would appreciate any feedback.
Thank you,
Norm J.

Norman Jenulis, Sun 22 Nov, 15:11

Mike I was between a plodder and a jogger

Enjoyed the article per usual   Blessings Karen

Karen Herrick PhD, Fri 20 Nov, 18:25

Excellent article. I am going to refer anyone who has questions
Regarding the passing over experience. I also love the analogy.

Thank you,
Mary smile

Mary B, Thu 19 Nov, 11:42

Hi Mike!

I enjoyed reading your blog post today…marathon analogy.  I have learned in my later years that a more spiritual life of empathy and compassion prepares the soul for the end of life.  Troubled or unresolved souls struggle much more with the life and death issue.  Staying in excellent shape is also mindful and healing, providing a sense of well being.

All the best,
Ps We are in Bucerius, Mx right now for a long break…returning to Oregon coast early December.

Steve Sparks, Wed 18 Nov, 15:03

Michael Tymn’s blog on recovery in the afterlife is wholly consistent medium testimony. That there is a recovery period is further born out by similar accounts of recently deceased souls spending time in afterlife hospitals or nursing homes.
When Michael Tymn exits the incarnate state he will very likely not need much assistance on the other side finding his way.  The best news for him while disincarnate will likely be that he won’t be needing to convince everyone he meets that the soul survives death.
This, however, may be problematic as he may not have much else to talk about.

David Stang, Wed 18 Nov, 10:18

Good analogy.

Leslie Harris, Tue 17 Nov, 23:53

I hear you, Mike, but I think there may be a simple - and somewhat reasonable - cost/benefit analysis going on in the church.

Two possible conclusions that come to my mind are; 1. People with a tendency to do evil could just say, “Well great! I’ll do what I want and just suffer a little hang over in the next life”. That actually fits the way they tend to live anyhow. 2. Good, albeit simple people, could perceive an injustice on God’s part and become disillusioned, “My oppressors ultimately get the same reward I do”.

All of which might be more harmful than the current arrangement.

Erich Avedisian, Tue 17 Nov, 16:51

What a sensible analogy, Mike! I have never believed that all souls as they pass into the afterlife will be treated the same. Clearly there are ‘degrees of development of soul’ on Earth and Hitler and Co. are going to need a lot more work than the rest of us. I have always seen Jesus in the same light as Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Schweitzer, and others who have so clearly benefitted humanity, especially when they have been subjected to difficult circumstances.

Dr Howard A. Jones, Tue 17 Nov, 10:56

thanks Mike for the article, I liked the thought that some people over there do not know they’re dead bec of a low level of consciousness, that makes sense - best to you

W Becker, Tue 17 Nov, 02:20

Another lovely post Mike. Makes it very easy for people to visualise the different states in the afterlife.

Wendy Zammit, Mon 16 Nov, 23:17

Mike- your analogy is brilliant, though of course some people- perhaps those who practice some physical fitness on a regular basis- will see that most easily.Others who do not do so, will probably pale at the analogy and run off for a Big Mac! Cheers!

paul biscop, Mon 16 Nov, 22:37

Do you really think that the ’ Hitlers and Jack the Rippers’ will in fact WANT to convalesce? I doubt it.

Ian Thompson, Mon 16 Nov, 21:12

I love your comparison of running a marathon to what we go through after death.  I’ll have to read it again to decide where I fit.  Probably some place above couch potato #1.

Elaine Reese, Mon 16 Nov, 19:35

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The Only Planet of Choice: Visitations – Many people use the word ‘Alien’ to describe a visitor from outer space. Extra terrestrial is another word, which is rather more user friendly. For the sake of the question and answer format, the word used by the questioner has been left, though even Tom questions our use of‘Alien’. Should we wish to foster openess between all beings of the Universe perhaps we should also look at our vocabulary? In a discussion between Andrew and Tom many years earlier, Andrew had asked Tom about UFOs and whether they were created manifestations. Tom had replied: “Many of the flying things that you call UFOs come from our place, but they come from other places also, and they do come in physical form. But many of them are not physical. They are like your movie screen”. Read here
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