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Letting Go of God Performance

Letting Go of God

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. Equally comedic and insightful, Letting Go of God is Sweeney's brilliant one-woman show about her struggle with her faith.
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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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  •  
    Graeme Sydney, Australia 12-31-10
    Graeme Sydney, Australia 12-31-10 Member Since 2011
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    "Humble, touching and smart"

    Letting Go Of God is a refreshing change from the usual smug arrogance of atheistic literature. It takes us on a believers journey to unbelief, addressing the fears, feelings and confusion this process stirs up while also humorously spotlighting in hindsight the absurdity of some of the pillars of religion that so many either are ignorant of or sweep under the carpet. It is never an exercise in religion bashing, but rather a wistful, sometimes even nostalgic account of Julia's sincere search for truth.
    I listened to this in its entirety in one sitting, and can see myself coming back for another listen.
    My only very minor gripe would be in regard to the listening experience - because this seems to be a set of live performances stitched together, sometimes one section ends abruptly, followed by a gap of silence where I usually went grasping for my iphone to see if my headphones has come loose or if the battery had gone dead!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip Kapelle, Netherlands 08-05-10
    Philip Kapelle, Netherlands 08-05-10 Member Since 2007
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    "Humourous account of a great journey"

    Julia Sweeney shares the account of her search for meaning, religion and spirituality. She puts into words what many of us must have been thinking about for a long time. Humourous and well researched. She shares some very personal and profound thoughts. Highly recommended, a good companion recording to Richard Dawkins' "The God Delusion", though Dawkins does a better job at explaning Darwin's insights, however that is only a minor point in the grand scheme of things.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Hamilton 07-22-10 Member Since 2015
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    ""Scathing brilliant""

    Wonderfully cerebral, incredibly humorous. Julia Sweeney takes you on her intrepid journey to find God. Through the Catholic Church, Buddhism, transcendental meditation, each time learning something new about God, and more importantly, about herself. "The Kingdom of God is within you". "Scathing brilliant". I've had this audio book for just over a week, and have listened to four times already. It's one short coming is that it is too short. This one is a must listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 05-17-10
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 05-17-10 Member Since 2010

    Addicted to Audible since 2009

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    "Funny and educational"

    A fun listen and I learned something from it as well... Two thumbs up!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Zena Las Vegas, NV, USA 04-08-10
    Zena Las Vegas, NV, USA 04-08-10
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    "Funny and entertaining!"

    I just loved how Julia narrates this! Very funny and very personable. I have listened to this over again many times now and share it with others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dann Los Angeles, CA, United States 04-01-10
    Dann Los Angeles, CA, United States 04-01-10 Member Since 2009

    My preference for a good story is something totally unusual and not run of the mill stuff. Give me something I haven't heard before.

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    "This is educated humor of importance"

    Comedic, witty and educational, believe it or not. What a great realization path she leads one through and it's not without educating herself on all the probable scenarios along the way. This isn't preachy but a story of her deep search to find the meaning of God ... who really wasn't there.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lorrie Powell, TN, USA 03-30-10
    Lorrie Powell, TN, USA 03-30-10
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    "A Familiar Journey"

    Since I found so many parallels in Julia Sweeney's journey, to my own, I imagine many of us have traveled a similar path. From a child with unwavering faith to that which we were raised in, to thinking, "this is not quite right, but there must be a "right" answer in all of those religions", to the realization that "they might all just be wrong." What I most appreciated was the sympathetic way she describes the journey of letting go. That it's not just a journey of logic, but of the emotions involved. Giving up on Santa is just as hard at 45 as it is at 5. We want to believe...but no longer can. There is a quietness that accompanies this insight. But in the stillness, a new awareness of what IS, takes the place of wishful thinking.
    Absolutely enjoyed it....and it was FUNNY too!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    iBeth Florida 07-11-08
    iBeth Florida 07-11-08 Listener Since 2005
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    "Entertaining"

    Audience reactions added to my enjoyment of this recording, but mostly I appreciated Sweeney's wit. The parts about her mother were my favorite. I also enjoyed her reaction to the Bible.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan raleigh, NC, USA 05-26-08
    Jonathan raleigh, NC, USA 05-26-08
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    "Thought-provoking and funny"

    Humorous, well thought out. I think those with and without faith will nod and see themselves portrayed here (and still smile)

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rajesh Johanneburg, South Africa 02-09-08
    Rajesh Johanneburg, South Africa 02-09-08 Member Since 2015

    Listening since 2004. Mystery, thrillers and anything that can blend with a walk, jog, exercise, long drive or a wait at the airport.

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    "A Must"

    Hilarious! There are many other things in this book which you can choose, but having a good laugh is not a choice while listening to it. Do not be afraid. Download it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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