The deeper I go into the ecstatic, radical sense of the word...the more I see that its invitation is surrender. Forgiveness is the golden door, the way past all fear and grief, and an entry into life beyond dictatorship of the ego.

What is radical about radical forgiveness? What is ecstatic about it? Using a spiritual philosophy grounded in the teachings of A Course in Miracles and other holy books, we go beyond the traditional usage of the word “forgiveness”. Rather than “letting bygones be bygones” (somehow), we agree to let our spiritual intelligence teach us. We humbly learn about the gifts that were hidden or obscured - in even the most terrible events in our lives. We surrender to the wisdom that lives beyond what our intellects can decipher. Allowing the healing blessings in, we also let pain and sorrow out of our hearts.

When we choose to let go of blame and grievances, and the corresponding thoughts and emotions buried deep within, we can refill ourselves on a cellular level with healing grace. We then find out that there is no spiritual need for forgiveness, after all, because we are not helpless, solitary victims of our circumstances. The world is not out to get us — in fact, God wants our perfect happiness.

Divine Love beckons us, welcoming us to release the pain of this material world, while supporting us to remain present in the world in order to guide others to the door. Divine Grace, sometimes known as the Holy Spirit, is the healer, and our part is to surrender to the healing...constantly flowing...the River of Love.

Recently, I found two plays on words that gave me a chuckle. I share them here for your enjoyment and inspiration.

One of the hardest parts about being human is the tendency toward feeling abandoned. Abandoned by loved ones, by the death of loved ones, by the "betrayal" of others, and by God as well. Especially by God. Hence all of the feelings of helplessness and hopelessness that muck up our innate happiness. Well, I found that there is a great use for abandonment. Turning around, there is the possibility to abandon ourselves to God. That's the juicy sort of abandonment that brings sublime joy, health, and happiness. This is the abandonment that Sufi poets describe so well. So next time you are feeling sadness or pain over thinking you’ve been abandoned by someone, abandon yourself to God instead. Freedom will be yours, every time.

Meditating upon "turning around", I remembered the analogy that Colin Tipping likes to use in his explanation of Radical Forgiveness. He describes our lives as being tapestries. They are beautiful, but usually we look at the backside of them. (“Ass backward,” as we used to say in New Jersey.) From that viewpoint, there are knots and hanging strings, and the image is messy and blurred. Turn it over, he suggests, and we see the divine perfection of our life plan, including everything that has ever happened for us. Not to us, but for us. It's a turn-over! Delectable! I can remember turn-over, yum...let's go get one right now.

When life seems unmanageable, try abandoning yourself to God. This surrender will put you on the path of forgiveness. And when circumstances are distasteful, turn it around...give yourself a tasty turn-over. Witnessing the perfection of each moment will make your life delicious again.

Author's Bio: 

Ana Holub, MA teaches people the joy of forgiveness, showing them how to forgive, and guiding them into a direct experience of peace. She is a forgiveness counselor, mediator and peace educator based in Northern California, USA. Over the past twenty years, she has worked with individuals and couples, government, prison inmates and at-risk families, non-profit organizations, businesses, and schools.

Ana holds a BA in Peace Studies, and an MA in Dispute Resolution from Pepperdine University School of Law. She is also a certified Domestic Violence counselor and Radical Forgiveness coach. She has spent years on the front lines of healing trauma, teaching her clients practical skills to improve their experience of joy, harmony, strength and empowerment.