I said to myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good.” But that also proved to be meaningless.
“Laughter,” I said, “is madness. And what does pleasure accomplish?”
I tried cheering myself with wine, and embracing folly—my mind still guiding me with wisdom. I wanted to see what was good for people to do under the heavens during the few days of their lives.
I undertook great projects: I built houses for myself and planted vineyards.
I made gardens and parks and planted all kinds of fruit trees in them.
I made reservoirs to water groves of flourishing trees.
I bought male and female slaves and had other slaves who were born in my house. I also owned more herds and flocks than anyone in Jerusalem before me.