To be tranquil is to be, calm, serene, and, in the moment, worry-free. The word tranquillity appears in lots of religious texts and particularly in Buddhism. In Buddhism the term passaddhi means the tranquillity of the body, thoughts and consciousness that is found on the path to enlightenment. Being tranquil allows you to a take rest from the periods of hard focused attention’so often required in modern life.
Research has shown that one of the best ways to find tranquility is to spend time in a natural environment. There you can allow your imagination to wander and just soak up your surroundings and a different way of being. For me, spending a little time among trees or by the sea helps me realise that life can be lived with a much longer perspective - the troubles of one day mean very little.
The first maps of tranquility were developed by Simon Rendel of ASH Consulting for a Department of Transport study in 1991. In these maps tranquil areas were defined as places sufficiently far from the visual or noise intrusion of development or traffic to be considered unspoilt by urban influences. More sophisticated mapping techniques are now available following work by researchers at Northumbria University, Newcastle University, and CPRE.
The research has shown the following factors are likely to make an area feel tranquil.
- A natural landscape, including woodland
- The presence of rivers, streams, lakes or the sea
- Birds and other wildlife
- Wide open spaces
- The clear open night sky with or without the moon
- A beach in a unique location
- Open fields, flowers etc. speically when accompanied by a gentle breeze.
I have a Facebook Page dedicated to finding tranquility and the quality of serenity - you will find it at this link - Unofficial Serenity