1There is an evil that I have seen under the sun, and it weighs heavily upon humanity:
2a man to whom God gives wealth, riches, and honor, so that he lacks nothing for himself of all that he desires, yet God does not give him the ability to eat of it,a but a stranger eats it. This is pointless, and it is a severe affliction.
3Or, if a man fathers 100 children and lives many years, so that the days of his years are many, but his soul is not satisfied with good things, and moreover he has no burial, I say that a stillborn child is better than he;
4for the stillborn comes pointlessly and goes in darkness, and its name is covered with darkness.
5It has not seen the sun nor known anything. Yet it has more rest than the other man
6even if he lives 1,000 years twice over, and yet fails to enjoy good things. Do not all go to one place?
7All the labor of man is for his mouth, and yet the appetite is not filled.
8For what advantage has the wise more than the fool? What advantage does the poor man have who knows how to walk before the living?
9Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire. This also is pointless and herding the wind.
10That which is, already his name was called, and it was known that he is man,b and he cannot contend with one who is mightier than he.
11For there are many things that increase pointlessness. How does that profit a man?
12For who knows what is good for a man in life, all the days of his pointless life that he makes like a shadow? For who can tell a man what will be after him under the sun?