Wednesday, December 09, 2009


My parents, just engaged, Christmas 1958, Spokane Washington

I didn't take a picture yesterday or this morning, so I am posting this one.  I love my mom's lipstick and my dad's sweater.  I meant to post this picture with a poem I found a long time ago about parents and wanting to go back in time and prevent them from meeting each other to avoid all the heartache and pain they will cause (no - not all of it was pain, but there was a fairly large amount of pain) and then realizing that if they don't meet and get married, then, well you wouldn't be here - so you have to cheer them on.  Anyway, it was a great poem and where the hell is it?  I cannot find it.  I swear I will find it.

It's really snowy here and we are bracing for a storm and very cold temperatures tomorrow.

I am getting a lot of really great response to my show on Showtime.  It's so sweet too because I honestly became so mired in the logistics of getting the film to Showtime, and it's been over a year since I even performed the show, that I forgot that I'm proud of the actual show itself!  It had become this bottomless pit of duties and details and now I'm getting these wonderful letters and I'm surprised - oh yeah, the show itself - yeah... that.  Hey, I'm proud of that!

Jim Emerson and I are working on a screenplay and making progress.  I'm working on two book ideas - I am the absolute slowest writer... But still, I'm plugging away at it.  And just now I have to go help Michael weatherize the outside of the house and get ready for this cold front.

31 comments:

Robin said...

I just watched Letting Go of God Monday night. Thank you for such a tender, honest and terribly funny show. I was thrilled to find that you had a blog. I will be back...a lot! Stay warm, it's currently 5 degrees here in Idaho!

Stephanie said...

I,too, just watch the show....it was WONDERFUL!It mirrors my experiences and current "quest" right down to my Irish roots and warm, fuzzy Catholic experiences. I always had a close realtionship with God, sought him in my darkest hours and truly bellieved that he was there, that he fixed the problem. I am alone yet confident in my "new" (4 years and counting)understanding but sound pretty "crazy" to my family.How do I continue to question and "unbelieve" when I have taught my children the same way I was taught?? Thank you for an avenue to show them what their crazy mother means when she says....we no longer have to go to church to be a good person....bla-bla bla!! Thank you, thank you thank you!!

Lee said...

I have your previous recordings of this show but last night's performance on Show Time was amazing. You've reworked and updated and it was terrific. Thanks so much for presenting such a topic with humor, pathos, and intelligence. What is that phrase from a song in Sound of Music.....a teaspoon of sugar makes the medicine go down.......You're the sugar!!!

Ann said...

That poem is by Sharon Olds. I remember her reading it on Bill Moyers' PBS show where he interviewed lots of different poets.

Pat said...

Because of a busy schedule, it took me a couple of nights to get through the whole film but I really did enjoy it! Living in the Bible Belt, being a "non-believer" (as Obama likes to call us) can be quite a challenge but I don't try to hide my non-belief. My friends think I'm not really an atheist, just stubborn.

My parents had a very similar reaction as yours to my declaration so now the topic is off-limits -- which is fine with me. I get tired of explaining why I just don't buy into all the hooplah. I left the Methodist church some 30 years ago and don't feel like I have missed out on anything. My children were not brought up with religion. They are adults now and can do as they wish but have been told not to try and "save" me if they get filled with the Holy Spirit. I'm good.

Stuart said...

Thanks for "Letting Go of God"!
I stumbled upon it on Showtime last night, and after watching just 20 minutes or so was inspired to make a blog posting.

Link to my LGoG posting

URL:
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/2009/12/letting-go-of-god.html

Stuart

evaporated said...

I'm slowly watching the show myself as well. My life is terribly busy and I can't seem to get a chunk of time to watch it all at once, but it is very moving and I am enjoying it.

I feel like a lot of what you said is similar to my own struggle with my beliefs. Your show has struck a cord with me, and I plan to watch it one more time for good measure.

Congratulations for speaking your mind. I think it's incredibly admirable.

M.L. said...

I watched "Letting Go of God" this week and was pleased that you were able to relay MY thoughts and experiences to the masses with such respect, delicate language, and humor. ;-) I guess we came to this consciousness in sort of the same way... by actually thinking! Good for us!

Anonymous said...

I've watched Letting Go of God twice now and cried both times at the end. Great show! Thank you so much for doing it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for Letting Go of God. I so loved And God Said Ha! When I saw you had done another show, I couldn't wait to see it. Letting Go of God is so wonderful, warm, and honest. Your words ring so true. Living in the "heartland" not too far from the Creation Museum I allow myself to be cowed into silence for fear of offending all around me. Your courage to speak your truth is an inspiration.

Mike Dupuis said...

Thank you for giving the ever increasing minority a voice that is not abrasive or condescending but analytical and sincere. So many of us feel the way you do but don't have the cunning vocabulary or such a disarming charm. Ive never enjoyed nodding my head in utter agreement so much. I am taking a Philosophy or Religion class and have become a walking advertisement for your show. Hope you come to Chicago.

folding electric bike said...

Your parents look good

BJ Smeal said...

Julia,

I was randomly flipping channels the other night, lamenting that I have some 500 odd channels to choose from in my quest for mind candy, when I paused for a moment on your show, “Letting Go Of God”. You grabbed me by the throat with the statement you had just made, and I thought, “Hey, the broad speaks the truth…looks interesting.” I continued to watch.

I have struggled with the God problem almost all my life, having had a childhood straight from Hell and orchestrated by characters that, for the most part, seemed to be direct descendants of Satan. I’ve always felt that if I did “believe”, as told to, I would have no other choice but to despise God with a venomous rancor, because nothing or no one reputed to be that omnipotent should be thanked for allowing any of his children to suffer any of the atrocities that I, my siblings, and as far as I could see, millions of other innocent people, had endured in our collective lives. Logic mandated doubt, with the whole God scenario, and in my mind, none of what the bible said was even a close relative to logic. My pragmatic side had taught me to understand that fairy tales are as beautiful as they are useless, in the real world, and as I got older and read more books that actually contained more truthful knowledge than the so-called book of knowledge, I began to understand why I had such struggles with the theory of God.

As a rapidly approaching old hag, I’ve come to see that religion has caused more sorrow in this world than anything else, and no amount of “afterlife promises” could ever begin to make it right. I have more peace now, as I accept this life on the basis of reality rather than the confusion of the theory of God. For me the mystery is not in God, himself, but rather how the most intelligent species on this planet have evolved in almost every facet except one, and why so many stubbornly and quite desperately cling to this particular unsubstantiated fairytale. But, I’m a liberal, so I don’t really mind what others believe, as long as they stop trying to cram it down my throat like a plate of rancid haggis.

At any rate, what I wanted to say to you is, simply put, Bravo! Thanks for allowing your influence to voice something that so many of us have wanted to express for so long. Not believing in God doesn’t make someone evil. Believing in humanity and in the power of such to enact change, give love and kindness, and do “good deeds” is not the opposite of believing in God. It is quite possible to live life well, once we trade those religious mandates for a healthy dose of logic and truth. After all, you don’t have to dress up the pig to thoroughly enjoy a B.L.T., right? (I apologize, in advance, to the PETA members and/or vegetarians; please don’t seek me out and stone me.)

I’m proud of the way you stated your case, which just so happens to be in-step with so many of your fellow humans; probably many more than have the courage to admit. Well done, you!

Many thanks,
B.J. Smeal

YHS1964 said...

JULIA,
I found out the truth, at the age of 23, after I read the 2nd most read book in the world "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand, which is now my bible.
The dictionary defines an atheist as someone who does not believe in a supreme being. I know who the supreme being is, the human race here on earth.
I enjoyed your Show Time 2 hrs. You broke down religion right where it should be, NOWHERE!
I was disappointed however, when you said you aopted a baby from overseas, WHY? There are so many adoptable children in the USA. So what if they make you jump thru hoops.
Oprah spends 40 million dollars on a school in Africa when so many schools in the USA are closing due to lack of funds. Americans in rural areas don't have electricity or inside plumnbing. I'm sorry I just don't get people with money that can make a differnce going overseas when the USA is in dier straits.
A fan,
Gil Mason
Bandera, Texas

Bobby said...

Julia
I watched Letting Go of God last night and I was impressed at how you put it together, so logically and methodically that anyone could follow in the same journey. It's my new holiday favorite!

Anonymous said...

cool show on showtime. you really nailed it.

Brenda said...

Top notch and totally hit the mark! With tongue in cheek I recommend that it be added to the annual winter seasonal classics. It was perfect.

TimmyB (Not the religious Timmy) said...

I've said it before, "LGOG" is a masterpiece. I've seen and listened to the show several times and am always amazed at the skillful way you structured it. Warmth, wit, personal journey. I think you will be even more proud of it as time goes by.

Anonymous said...

Don't be fooled by those who take the words of the Bible and twist them so they can sell DVDs. Specifically, remember when Julia remarked about Luke 14:26 (about "hating" your parents, sisters, etc.), the passage is really saying not to love them more than the poor man, the criminal, the lost, etc. It is saying that you can't just love your own life and serve ONLY your family. It means to be selfless and serve both, especially those that need to be made aware of God's presence in their lives. I challenge you to read the Bible and do some investigating. God knows we are intelligent and says some complex things. Anyone who reads it on the surface and mocks it because it suits their natural instinct to be selfish, is buying into the lies that the enemy whispers in your ear. I know, I believed them once too. Satan is the greatest car salesman on earth. he will make you laugh, stimulate you, REASON with you, and do whatever it takes to make you think that life should be nothing but EASY and FUN. But that's not reality is it? Life is tough, and God wants to give you the tools to navigate it, knowing your true worth. To think you already know it is false, because you doubt yourself sometimes. Not very concrete. But He ALWAYS knows! Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something. I mean, look at it! Sweeney is selling something just like Bill Maher! It's a trend to bash God because it sells! God doesn't want money from you or to brainwash you. He wants you to be free from yourself! Its human selfishness that's taken the freedom He's given us and turned the Earth into the selfish place it is! Look into the concept of free will. That is the next step in the investigative process. You are the princes and princesses of a kingdom greater than your own. Be broken of yourself, and be free!

Lee said...

Yes, Anonymous, life is tough....did God make it that way just to test our mettle?? WHY??? He's God! Unless he's a sado/masochist he didn't have to create a world where millions of innocents are slaughtered because of the "Free Will" of the killers. Where's the free will of the little girl swept from her bedroom, raped, tortured and murdered? Is her horrible death just a lesson from God who could have prevented it? This god is nonexistent, there is not one iota of empirical evidence that it exists. Believers think they know the mind of god and how he wants us to behave through the ramblings of 2000 year old scribes cobbled together at the council of Nicaea. But they can't explain evil except to say he works in mysterious ways. That's a cop out, pure and simple. You spew your tripe without the guts to even identify yourself...anonymous indeed!

Cupcake Murphy said...

Was the poem you were thinking of by Sharon Olds? I Go Back To 1937? That poem makes me happy that there are letters for Sharon Olds to make into words to form sentences that are so perfect.

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Anonymous said...

Re: B.J. Smeals comment-I wish I could write like that. My experience with religion-foster care- two catholic homes and two secular were grim and long.I can only reflect my experience of those who represented religion but when these child wardens had their sanctimonious masks off I didn't believe in God but I saw the face of evil clearly. Their god is cruel and judgemental and they even more so. They still scare me to this day and I avoid them as the plague.

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That poem is by Sharon Olds. I remember her reading it on Bill Moyers' PBS show where he interviewed lots of different poets.

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