(1) There is another serious tragedy I have seen in our world. (2) God gives great wealth and honor to some people and gives them everything they could ever want, but then he doesn’t give them the health to enjoy it. They die, and others get it all! This is meaningless â€“ a sickening tragedy. (3) A man might have a hundred children and live to be very old. But if he finds no satisfaction in life and in the end does not even get a decent burial, I say he would have been better off born dead. (4) I realize that his birth would have been meaningless and ended in darkness. He wouldn’t even have had a name, (5) and he would never have seen the sun or known of its existence. Yet he would have had more peace than he has in growing up to be an unhappy man. (6) He might live a thousand years twice over but not find contentment. And since he must die like everyone else â€“ well, what’s the use?
(7) All people spend their lives scratching for food, but they never seem to have enough. (8) Considering this, do wise people really have any advantage over fools? Do poor people gain anything by being wise and knowing how to act in front of others? (9) Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless; it is like chasing the wind. (10) Everything has already been decided. It was known long ago what each person would be. So there’s no use arguing with God about your destiny.
(11) The more words you speak, the less they mean. So why overdo it? (12) In the few days of our empty lives, who knows how our days can best be spent? And who can tell what will happen in the future after we are gone?