The Four Trances
Detached from sensual objects, detached from unwholesome things, the
disciple enters into the first trance, which is accompanied by "Verbal
Though," and "Rumination," is born of "Detachment," and filled with
"Rapture," and "Happiness."
This first trance is free from five things, and five things are
present. When the disciple enters the first trance, there have
vanished the 5 Hindrances:
Lust, Ill-will, Torpor and Dullness,
Restlessness and Mental Worry, Doubts;
and there are present: Verbal
Thought, Rumination, Rapture, Happiness, and Concentration.
And further: after the subsiding of verbal thought and rumination,
and by the gaining of inward tranquility and oneness of mind, he
enters into a state free from verbal thought and rumination, the
second trance, which is born of Concentration, and filled with Rapture
And further: after the fading away of rapture, he dwells in
equanimity, attentive, clearly conscious; and he experiences in his
person that feeling, of which the Noble Ones say: "Happy lives the man
of equanimity and attentive mind" - thus he enters the third trance.
And further: after the giving up of pleasure and pain, and through
the disappearance of previous joy and grief, he enters into a state
beyond pleasure and pain, into the fourth trance, which is purified by
equanimity and attentiveness.
The four Trances may be obtained by means of Watching over In and
Out-breathing, as well as through the fourth sublime meditation, the
"Meditation of Equanimity," and others.
The three other Sublime Meditations of "Loving Kindness,"
"Compassion", and "Sympathetic Joy" may lead to the attainment of
the first three Trances.
The "Cemetery Meditations," as well as the
meditation "On Loathsomeness," will produce only the First Trance.
The "Analysis of the Body," and the Contemplation on the Buddha, the
Law, the Holy Brotherhood, Morality, etc., will only produce
Develop your concentration: for he who has concentration understands
things according to their reality.
And what are these things?
arising and passing away of corporeality, of feeling, perception,
mental formations and consciousness.
Thus, these five Groups of Existence must be wisely penetrated;
Delusion and Craving must be wisely abandoned; Tranquility and Insight
must be wisely developed.
This is the Middle Path which the Perfect One has discovered,
which makes one both to see and to know, and which leads to peace,
to discernment, to enlightenment, to Nirvana.
And following upon this path, you will put an end to suffering.