Do not pay attention to every word people say, or you may hear your servant cursing you—
for you know in your heart that many times you yourself have cursed others.
All this I tested by wisdom and I said, “I am determined to be wise”— but this was beyond me.
Whatever exists is far off and most profound— who can discover it?
So I turned my mind to understand, to investigate and to search out wisdom and the scheme of things and to understand the stupidity of wickedness and the madness of folly.
I find more bitter than death the woman who is a snare, whose heart is a trap and whose hands are chains. The man who pleases God will escape her, but the sinner she will ensnare.
“Look,” says the Teacher, “this is what I have discovered: “Adding one thing to another to discover the scheme of things—
while I was still searching but not finding— I found one upright man among a thousand, but not one upright woman among them all.
This only have I found: God created mankind upright, but they have gone in search of many schemes.”