Then I began to think again about being wise,
and also about being foolish and doing crazy things.
But after all, what more can anyone do?
He can’t do more than what the other king has already done.
I saw that being wise is certainly better than being foolish,
just as light is better than darkness.
Wise people see where they are going,
but fools walk around in the dark.
Yet I saw that
both wise and foolish people end the same way.
I thought to myself,
“What happens to a fool will happen to me, too,
so what is the reward for being wise?”
I said to myself,
“Being wise is also useless.”
The wise person and the fool
will both die,
and no one will remember either one for long.
In the future, both will be forgotten.
So I hated life. It made me sad to think that everything here on earth is useless, like chasing the wind. I hated all the things I had worked for here on earth, because I must leave them to someone who will live after me. Someone else will control everything for which I worked so hard here on earth, and I don’t know if he will be wise or foolish. This is also useless. So I became sad about all the hard work I had done here on earth. People can work hard using all their wisdom, knowledge, and skill, but they will die, and other people will get the things for which they worked. They did not do the work, but they will get everything. This is also unfair and useless. What do people get for all their work and struggling here on earth? All of their lives their work is full of pain and sorrow, and even at night their minds don’t rest. This is also useless.
The best that people can do is eat, drink, and enjoy their work. I saw that even this comes from God, because no one can eat or enjoy life without him. If people please God, God will give them wisdom, knowledge, and joy. But sinners will get only the work of gathering and storing wealth that they will have to give to the ones who please God. So all their work is useless, like chasing the wind.