Divrei Kohelet, Ben Dovid, Melech in Yerushalayim.
Hevel havalim, saith Kohelet, hevel havalim; all is hevel.
What profit hath a man from all his amal (toil) which he hath toiled under the shemesh?
Dor v’dor, generations come and go, passing away; but ha’aretz remaineth l’olam.
The shemesh also ariseth, and the shemesh goeth down, and hasteth to its place, there to arise again.
The ruach (wind) goeth toward the darom (south), and turneth about unto the tzafon (north); it whirleth about continually, and the ruach returneth again according to its circuits.
All the neharot (rivers) run into the yam; yet the yam is not full; unto the place from whence the neharot come, thither they return to go again.
All things are wearisome; no ish can express it; the ayin is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ozen full with hearing.
The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done; and there is nothing chadash under the shemesh.
Is there anything whereof it may be said, See, this is chadash? L’olamim (ages ago), which were before us, it hath been already.
There is no zichron (remembrance) of former things; neither shall there be with those who come after any zikaron (recollection) of things that are to come.
I, Kohelet, was Melech over Yisroel in Yerushalayim.
And I set my lev to seek and search out by chochmah concerning all things that are done under Shomayim; what grievous task hath Elohim given to the bnei haAdam to be afflicted therewith.
I have seen all the ma’asim that are done under the shemesh; and, hinei, all is hevel and chasing after ruach (wind).
That which is crooked cannot be made straight; and chesron (that which is lacking) cannot be numbered.
I communed with mine own lev, saying, Hinei, I am come to greatness, even greater chochmah than all they that have been before me over Yerushalayim; yea, my lev had great experience of chochmah and da’as.
And I applied my lev to have da’as of chochmah, and to have da’as of holelot (madness) and sichlut (folly); I perceived that this also is striving after ruach (wind).
For in much chochmah (wisdom) is much ka’as (grief, vexation); and he that increaseth da’as increaseth mach’ov (sorrow).