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Letting Go of God Performance

Letting Go of God

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Anyone who thinks that Julia Sweeney is just the comedian who played "Pat" on Saturday Night Live, doesn't know Julia Sweeney. Letting Go of God, an elegantly written and beautifully performed monologue about her loss of faith, made me laugh - a lot - and think even more. Far from being an angry atheistic screed, it is an uplifting journey of the heart. —Steve Feldberg

Publisher's Summary

Julia Sweeney says she was a "happy Catholic girl" when, one day, she walked into church and signed up for a Bible-study course. "What an eye opener that was!" she says. "Next thing you know, I was on a quest for something I could really believe in. I traveled to places like Bhutan, Ecuador, and my local Starbucks looking for answers. Would I embrace Buddhism? New Age pseudo-science? Was I a freak for feeling the way I did, or were there other people out there just like me? I was grappling with serious questions. But, somehow, a lot of the things that were happening to me seemed, well, funny."

Equally comedic and insightful, Letting Go of God is Sweeney's brilliant one-woman show about her struggle with her faith. Grappling with the seeming contradictions in Adam and Eve, Noah, the Ten Commandments, and even the teachings of Jesus - and trying to understand the Bible's messages about morality, family values, and human suffering while faced with door-knocking Mormons and wise-cracking priests - Sweeney takes listeners on her very personal journey from God to "not-God".

This performance was recorded on November 19, 2005, at the Ars Nova Theatre in New York City.

Julia Sweeney was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1989-94, and is best known for the mysteriously androgynous character, "It's Pat!". She has also served as a consulting producer on Sex and the City and Desperate Housewives. Letting Go of God is her third monologue. She performed her first, God Said, "Ha!", in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and on Broadway, as well as in a film produced by Quentin Tarantino. The CD version was nominated for a Grammy.

There's lots more Julia Sweeney available at Audible®! Just click here to download In the Family Way, her appearances on This American Life, her Un-Cabaret performances, and other great programs.

©2006 Julia Sweeney; (P)2006 Julia Sweeney

What the Critics Say

"Searing and bracingly funny....Letting Go of God is refreshingly unrancorous, lucid and, yes, inspirational." (The New York Times)
"Letting Go of God is a gale-force breath of fresh air into the mostly political dialogue about religion in our time." (Los Angeles Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    Tim College Station, TX, USA 12-22-09
    Tim College Station, TX, USA 12-22-09
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    "Julia Sweeney isn't "Strident"."

    For the many believers who avoid reasoned, if undiplomatic, arguments assailing their religion by attacking the messengers, Julia Sweeney is the answer. Julia offered nothing that further shored up my disdain for religion - I didn't need it. The older I get, the more ridiculous religion seems to me. What is clear, however, is how many believers disregard the arguments of Dawkins, Hitchens, and Harris by whining about how abrasive these fellows are. And they are abrasive - who can blame them? But let's not go there - because Julia Sweeney does not go there. Where she takes us is on a delightful, heartfelt personal journey during which she finally concludes that she can no longer believe in the unbelievable. She's funny. She's sincere. And best of all, she's right.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christina north las vegas, NV, USA 03-08-07
    Christina north las vegas, NV, USA 03-08-07
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    "drop dead funny. 'nuf said."

    being raised catholic, this was "pee your pants" hysterical! it was deeply insightful on the general, everday human condition, as well. i am getting all her books. exactly what an audiobook should be, no matter how you were brought up. i wish it was longer.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-30-08 Member Since 2016

    damengineer@msn.com

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    "Funny without being irreverant, rude, or pushy"

    This book is hilarious while discussing a serious subject. While I do not share the Julia's destination, I very much enjoyed listening to the journey. Unlike many of the reviewers, I can't let go of my belief in God. The book did, however, help me to think about my beliefs. It is well written, "researched", and presented. I recommend it for anyone and everyone!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon Durham, NC, USA 04-19-07
    Shannon Durham, NC, USA 04-19-07
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    "Pick up, God, I know your there!"

    Manages to be funny, irreverent, and respectful all at once. This was not tossed off in a day, but is a thouroughly though out and honest exposition of personal change. Not for the dogmatic religionist or stone=cold athiest. Shows true compassion, emotion, and rationality.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alessa West Valley City, UT, USA 05-12-09
    Alessa West Valley City, UT, USA 05-12-09
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    "Very Amusing"

    Julia has a wonderful way with words. She was very accurate in her description of Mormon missionaries (I grew up LDS) and her story of her parents reaction to her Atheist "coming out" reminds me very much of my own experience being a non-believer in the heart of "Zion". I definitely encourage any Agnostic, Humanist, Atheist or open minded believer to listen to this

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anna Seattle, WA, USA 11-30-08
    Anna Seattle, WA, USA 11-30-08 Member Since 2007
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    "Wonderful, funny, rational"

    I really enjoyed Ms. Sweeney's sharing of her journey from faith to reason with her characteristic warmth and wit.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LauraRN 05-02-08
    LauraRN 05-02-08
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    "Serious Topic-Light Approach"

    I first "met" Julia Sweeney on SNL where she played a range of characters from the androgenous "PAT" to ingenues to Mom-characters. After her bout with cancer, she published "God Said Ha!" which was a funny, touching account of her battle and with the death of her brother. I expected that her cancer experience would be related in this book which is a surprisingly circumspect account of her faith-related decisions. Although I am certain that it played into her views toward God, I was a bit sad that she did not share that aspect with us.

    Julia never disappoints. Her sense of humor remains wry, and whether or not you agree with her decisions, she provides enough background that you can respect them.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John M Lafayette, CA USA 02-18-08
    John M Lafayette, CA USA 02-18-08 Member Since 2007
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    "Extremeley funny and insightful"

    This is a real gem. Julia Sweeney manages to be extremeley funny while talking about her own journey of spiritual and religious discovery. She conveys more insights and fundamental truths in just over two hours than most of the other "popular" atheist/agnostic tomes out there that are many times longer. Unlike many of those other books, she is able to do it without being depressing, disrespectful, or taking herself too seriously. I have listened to it twice already and will likely listen again.
    If the subject matter and approach of this book looks interesting to you, then I encourage you to get it. You will not be disappointed!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Cox San Diego, CA USA 09-22-16
    Michael Cox San Diego, CA USA 09-22-16 Member Since 2012

    Audiophile

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    "seriously funny"

    I recommend it to all my, self righteous, Bible thumping friends, most of whom have not read that book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jose United States 03-23-14
    Jose United States 03-23-14 Member Since 2010
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    "Well worth two hours of your time"

    This was one of my first Audible books, and I loved it. I found Julia Sweeney’s performance to be more than entertaining- I laughed and smiled most of the way through, thinking this person is brilliant, but it was clearly not all fun and games for her to come to her decision- to let go of God. How could it be? If you are interested in the spiritual, you should listen to this audio book, especially if your instinct is to push up against the title, not because I think you should be converted one way or the other, but because it’s that good. I feel we need to do more than just listen to what others think about when it comes these matters, we need to try to deeply understand their points of view in order to fully understand our own. This is well worth two hours of your time.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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