Hayman, an executive producer on "Joan of Arcadia," is on a constant search for unknown performers who can play God, who appears several times each episode to talk to teenager Joan Girardi (Amber Tamblyn).
"Usually in the beginning of the episode, we have a God who is more ditzy, absent-minded," Hayman said. "The God we have at the end of each episode tends to be more serious, has to be more gentle and warm. That God is usually providing important information or teaching a lesson."
Barbara Hall, the show's creator, is certainly specific about who can't play God: celebrities. "You're not going to see Tony Danza as God, at least not this season."
She has also written up her own 10 commandments as a guidepost of what God can and cannot do. It's drawn both from her studies into various religions, as well as the needs of casting a weekly television series.
"It's something that comes in very useful when I'm trying to explain how God works in the show," she said. And those commandments are?
* God cannot directly intervene.
* Good and evil exist.
* God can never identify one religion as being right.
* The job of every human being is to fulfill his or her true nature.
* Everyone is allowed to say no to God, including Joan.
* God is not bound by time -- this is a human concept.
* God is not a person and does not possess a human personality.
* God talks to everyone all the time in different ways.
* God's plan is what is good for us, not what is good for Him.
* God's purpose for talking to Joan, and everyone, is to get her and us to recognize the interconnectedness of all things: All of your actions have consequences; God can be found in the smallest actions. However, the exact nature of God is a mystery that can never be solved.
-- Greg Braxton