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#3230 - Friday, July 18, 2008 - Editor: Jerry Katz  

Nonduality Highlights -    

Chuck Hillig was on the nonduality scene in 1977 with a classic book that later became known as Enlightenment for Beginners.  

Looking at his place on the nonduality timeline, we could say Chuck is the link between Alan Watts and the Internet.  

Chuck's books are unlike any others in the nonduality genre. He is known for writing simple statements appearing to be as ordinary as a hole in the ground. In this issue we poke our heads into that hole.  

The four books featured here -- the Enlightenment Quartet -- can be ordered through the publisher: or  

What follows is an introduction to each of the four books, including short reviews, a description, a couple excerpts.  


"The Way It Is: Realizing the Truth About Everything" is a guide to using that piece of wisdom in almost every aspect of life. Combining aspects of self-discovery, eastern religion, philosophy and modern psychology, "The Way It Is" seeks to answer questions such as the existence of free will, good and evil, and how one improves themselves. An ideal book of spirituality and philosophy, highly recommended for community library spirituality collections.   -- Midwest Book Review  

By Chuck Hillig

…from "The Way IT Is" 2002 by Chuck Hillig (

POINT OF DEPARTURE: "When Consciousness pretends that there's a separation between what It says It is…(the "I")… and what It says It isn't …(the "not-I"), then the world mysteriously (re)appears. But It's not really "going" anywhere. Remember that the purpose of a song is not to arrive at the final note. The purpose of a song is found in the joyous singing of It.

So It is with Consciousness. It's just.....singing!"

Q: "But Chuck, It really can't be that basic. Aren't you simplifying this whole thing a little too much?"

A: Well, how can you oversimplify something that is, by Its very nature, simplicity Itself? In fact, because Its "simple-ness" is so absolutely complete and pure, this "It" can only manifest Itself by pretending to be complex. In other words, when the indivisible Consciousness pretends to be divided into parts, It creates an illusory world of polarities. And YOU already are that very Consciousness, Itself!

Q: "Yes, but if I'm really this so-called 'It,' then why don't I have a direct and personal experience of being It right now?"

A: This "you," (as the illusory ego-self that you think you are), can never personally experience Its own true, fundamental nature. This "you" can only BE what It already is (i.e. "It"). In other words, this "you" will never be able to "get" It simply because It already is IT! Or, to put It another way, how can you ever arrive at a place where you are already dwelling?

Believing that you're not really "there," however, provides the cosmic momentum for It to, seemingly, "go-out-looking-for-Itself." It's this purposeful mis-identification that sets the entire drama of your life into motion.

Q: "Well, if any of It is really true, how can I actually use this kind of philosophy in my everyday life in the world?"

A: You can't "use" It in the usual sense because, actually, It will only be using YOU. At one level, though, you can stay more aligned with It by consciously choosing exactly what It appears to be choosing for you.

In other words, practice saying a resounding "Yes!" to whatever shows up for you. (And, even when you feel like saying "No," then just say "Yes" to the fact that, at least for right now, you're saying "No.")

In short, don't reject anything….not even your own rejections!

Remember, however, that this "you," (as the historical ego-self) is only pretending that you're able to manipulate or control It. Consciousness will always get Its own way in the end, simply because, no matter where you think this "ego-self" is going, It is already there.…waiting for you.

Read all the Twenty Questions and responses at



"Enlightenment for Beginners" is the simple story about how (and why) you've been cleverly imagining yourself to be only a separate and limited Being. After identifying the Reader as "Black Dot #1," the Author then shows how Life is only a wonderful Game of pretending to not be "Black Dot #2,"..... better known as "The Other."

Using easily-understood words and drawings, the Author invites the Reader to discover that they already are "Who" it is that they've been looking for.

After a 1600 word Introduction (which, the Author suggests, the younger Readers can easily skip), the Main Text uses only another 2000 very common and ordinary words to unfold its entire story.

Although most people can read this amazing little book in under 30 minutes, its profound spiritual impact can last a lifetime.

Comments and Reviews about.....Enlightenment for Beginners:

"With artful skill and humor, you have gifted us with a deceptively simple expression of profound universal truths."
Hyla Cass, M.D. (Natural Highs)

"There are brilliant insights in Chuck Hillig's book. Even one of them could dramatically change your life."
Deepak Chopra, M.D. (Ageless Body, Timeless Mind)

"This is a priceless gem and a basic must-read manual for being human. This spiritual treasure exposes the primordial secret. It's simple and yet incomparably rich; to the point yet vaster than the vast. This is a marvelous, delightful little book."
Timothy Conway, Ph.D. (Women Absorbed in God)

"A cute, clever and accurate description of the nature of Reality."
Jim Dreaver (The Way of Harmony)

"Joyful! This book is an absolute delight!"
Werner Erhard (Founder of EST and The Forum)

"I really loved it! It's quite amazing how you succeeded in expressing very profound ideas of perennial philosophy in the most elementary, simplified and humorous way. I hope that this little treasure of a book will have great success."
Stanislav Grof, M.D. (Realms of Human Unconscious)




“This book has a 1-inch hole through its center. That might seem like a publisher's gimmick, but the hole is the core of Chuck's message: Like the *hole*, your true nature is formless clarity. Like the *whole*, you are complete, lacking nothing. Hole as fullness, whole as emptiness. The first half of the book is like a guided meditation, allowing you to grok how this clarity is actually your present experience. The second half of the book is a potpourri of puns, quotes from world teachers, and illustrations that provide visual metaphors for the hole as whole-ness. Chuck writes with infectious good cheer, like a sagely best friend who happens to be a tour guide. Because of the book's clever construction, it becomes sculpture as well as text, and deconstructs dualisms of inner vs. outer, self vs. other, and part vs. whole. (W)holely recommended!”

Gregory F. Goode, Ph.D.
Philosophical Counselor

“The text and illustrations in this book revolve around its empty center, which is represented by a hole through the heart of the book. This hole symbolizes the whole; much like the mysterious void or emptiness in Buddhism sustains the fullness of life. In his usual playful style, reminiscent of the late Alan Watts, the author points the reader to her own center, beyond concepts, beyond religion and, most of all, beyond belief.”

Leo Hartong, Author, Awakening to the Dream




A Book About Living as the Source of WHO You Are.  
Seeds for the Soul is a fascinating collection of thoughts, ideas and speculations recorded in my private journals over the past 25 years.

The book weaves philosophy, psychology and non-dualism together into a world view that is both comprehensive and practical while being one that points directly to the Source of who we really are.


Your life’s journey is a pilgrimage that’s always going from one sacred space to yet another sacred space.  


     And the very road that you’re traveling on between these sacred spaces is also sacred, too.  


     No matter what your life looks like right now, you’re always standing in the Temple of the Divine.  


     Your own Heart is truly the Holy-of-Holies.




    Just because you feel like doing something evil, it doesn’t mean that you absolutely have to do it. 


     Deeply hidden within our souls, we all have these secret pockets of pathology.  


     All of them, however, must be fully acknowledged, respected, honored and embraced.  


     Notice your own craziness…and then move on.     


     Most of our problems with other human beings usually start with our own problems with just being human.




  Your feelings don’t really hassle you.  


     What hassles you are your beliefs about what you think you should be feeling instead of what you actually are feeling.  


     In other words, you’re “should-ing” all over yourself !!!


     Your hassles only increase when you feel:   

        angry…about your anger, 

          sad…about your sadness, 

            fearful…about your fear, 

              distressed…about your distress

                 guilty…about your guilt

                    ashamed…about your shame     

                      etc.  etc.  etc.


     Give yourself 100% permission to feel whatever is showing up for you.  


     You don’t have to feel lousy about feeling lousy.


     Just feel lousy. 



    You are the true source of all of your own experiences in life. 


     Since it’s all your drama, you’re even the true source of whatever it is that you’re feeling victimized by.  


     In other words, no one else is making you think or feel anything.  They’re just inviting you to create some experience for yourself, and then you are taking them up on their offer.


    You can change your feelings by learning how to change your focus.   


     Your experiences in life are ultimately determined by where you’re putting your full awareness.


     In the end, your heart will always walk towards whatever it is that your mind is paying attention to. 


~ ~ ~


"I love [Seeds for the Soul]. I've found myself dipping into it again and again, and every dip is liberating. As always, Chuck manages to express profound truth with utmost simplicity. His delightful lightness and sense of humor are infinitely valuable to anyone with a tendency to take life too seriously. His writing always transmits the sense that everything is perfect just as it is. As always, he shows the reader that there is nothing to seek and nowhere to go. At the same time, he offers some excellent pointers on living wisely and fully, and some clear insight into what therapy from a non-dual perspective might be about. That ability of his to dance on both the relative and absolute levels at once, and always from the absolute understanding, provides a truly useful, unique, and rich perspective. I highly recommend this and all of Chuck's wonderfully enlightening books."

Joan Tollifson
Bare-Bones Meditation
Awake in the Heartland



~ ~ ~



Chuck Hillig's Enlightenment Quartet may be ordered through the publisher: or

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