1 (a): free from agitation of mind or spirit; (b): free from disturbance or turmoil
2: unvarying in aspect: Steady, Stable
Tranquil (adj.): mid-15th century, a back-formation from tranquility or else from Latin tranquillus “quiet, calm, still.”
Tranquility (n.): late 14th century, from Old French tranquilite “peace, happiness,” in 12th century from Latin tranquillitatem “quietness, stillness; serenity,” from tranquillus “quiet, calm, still,” perhaps from trans- “over” + a root possible related to quies “rest” (related to: quiet).
“Like water which can clearly mirror the sky and the trees only so long as its surface is undisturbed, the mind can only reflect the true image of the Self when it is tranquil and wholly relaxed.”
Indra Devi (1899-2002, Eugenie V. Peterson, Russian yoga teacher and an early disciple of Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya)
“And when the night is cloudy there is still a light that shines on me, shine until tomorrow, let it be”
The Beatles (formed in Liverpool England in 1960, regarded as the most influential rock band; members included John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr)
“Seek happiness in tranquility and avoid ambition even if it be only the apparently innocent one of distinguishing yourself in science and discoveries.”
Mary Shelley (1797-1851, English Romantic novelist best known as the author of “Frankenstein”; also the wife of poet Percy Bysshe Shelley)
“It is in your power to withdraw yourself whenever you desire. Perfect tranquility within consists in the good ordering of the mind, the realm of your own.”
Marcus Aurielius (121-180 AD, Emperor of Rome from 161 -180 who kept the empire safe from the Parthians and Germans, but best known for his intellectual pursuits)
“In your occupations, try to possess your soul in peace. It is not a good plan to be in haste to perform any action that it may be the sooner over. On the contrary, you should accustom yourself to do whatever you have to do with tranquility, in order that you may retain the possession of yourself and of settled peace.”
Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte Guyon (1648-1717, aka as Madam Guyon, French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism, which was considered heretical by the Roman Catholic Church, for which she was imprisoned for 8 years)
“Our life depends on the kind of thoughts we nurture. If our thoughts are peaceful, calm, meek, and kind, then that is what our life is like. If our attention is turned to the circumstances in which we live, we are drawn into a whirlpool of thoughts and can have neither peace nor tranquility.”
Thaddeus of Vitovnica (1914-2003, Serbian Orthodox elder and published author, credited for proposing the idea that our thoughts determine the outcome of our lives)
“Don’t ask to live in tranquil times. Literature doesn’t grow there.”
Rita Mae Brown (b. 1944, writer, activist, and feminist, best known for her first novel, “Rubyfruit Jungle”)
“In your occupations, try to possess your soul in peace. It is not a good plan to be in haste to perform any action that it may be the sooner over. On the contrary, you should accustom yourself to do whatever you have to do with tranquility, in order that you may retain the possession of yourself and of settled peace.” — Jeanne Marie Bouvier de la Motte Guyon
When I was sixteen years old and a high school student, I immersed myself heavily in art and drawing, taking private lessons at an amazing art studio, one of the most tranquil and vibrating places I’ve ever experienced. The environment was cultivated by Patricia, an artist-teacher who was a strong and steady woman of integrity.
Determined to take as many of these private classes as I could, after school I worked a couple of part-time jobs, and then drove to the studio. I don’t recall how I managed to arrive there safely in my beat up old Volkswagen Beetle, or even how I managed to get home at 9:00 or 10:00 on a school night.
What I do recall is this visceral feeling of peace, a world that seem to stand still and facilitate healing in everyone who I had the privilege to create art. I oftentimes became so immersed in the present moments that time for me nearly crawled to a halt while I worked. It was like a dream, the most magical times of my adolescence. It felt as if God had cloaked and hid me in a protective dimension where no harm could touch me for a time.
My life got better, exponentially, more hopeful, where I was able to envision a brighter future. I was then able to enroll myself in advanced art classes in high school with other exceptional student artists who were kind and generous. Miraculously, I rose above the fray, zeroed in on Life’s beauty, and navigated the challenges, more successfully.
Continue to work at what you love, sojourners, but also fight for those transcendent moments of deep tranquility.
Written with Love, Tonya