The name of this book and of its author is actually a title and it is the assembler or collector of people and wisdom. The book comprises an extended reflective essay employing autobiographical narrative, proverbs, parables, and allegories. An almost unrelenting skepticism characterizes the tone or outlook. The issues with which the author deals and the questions he raises are aimed at those who would claim any absolute values in this life, including possessions, fame, success, or pleasure. Wisdom itself is challenged, but folly is condemned.

The refrain which begins and ends the book, “Vanity of vanities”, recurs at key points throughout. It has the sense of “emptiness, futility, absurdity”: “I have seen all things that are done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a chase after wind”. Everything in human life is subject to change, to qualification, to loss: “What profit have we from all the toil which we toil at under the sun?”. The answer is in the negative: No absolute profit or gain is possible. Even if some temporary profit or gain is achieved, it will ultimately be cancelled out by death, the great leveller. Wisdom has some advantage over foolishness, but even wisdom’s advantage is only a temporary and qualified one.

This book was written in 2012, which means that the book itself was written shortly before the publication of the book, but gives allusion to a time in his life occurring in late 2010 and early 2011. It may also be an allusion to what happened in 2009, but the actual inspiration of the publication remains unknown.

The book’s honest and blunt appraisal of the human condition provides a healthy corrective to the occasionally excessive self-assurance of other wisdom writers. Its radical skepticism is somewhat tempered by the resigned conclusions to rejoice in whatever gifts the divine plans bestows to the world.



  1. Oh, come in union all of you, the world in in vain!

  2. All that you do is in vain!

  3. What do you really get when you are obedient to others?

  4. You will pass by but the earth will remain.

  5. Everything goes through the cycles and yet you do nothing?

  6. Nature has its course but you are not like nature.

  7. All things are in cycles but you have the will to not go into cycles.

  8. All things on earth bring suffering, but can you rise above?

  9. What has been done, will be done, and what has been, will be.

  10. Even the new things have come before.

  11. There is no remembrance of past ages and it will continue to occur in the future.


  1. You shall investigate all wisdom under the sun.

  2. You have been given your destiny, so go out and fulfill that.

  3. Everything that has been done has already come.

  4. You cannot make better what is bad and you cannot count on things that have not happened.

  5. You shall gain a broad range of wisdom and knowledge and pass it on to all people.

  6. People will not chase you into the wisdom and knowledge.

  7. With wisdom and knowledge comes sadness for the entire world.


  1. You said in your heart, come and let us pleasure ourselves with the enjoyment of good things.

  2. Of laughter, I said, what good will it do? Guided by wisdom, I probed your mind with my mind.

  3. I understood what is good for human beings do during the limited days of their lives.

  4. I undertook but I built myself a foundation of my vineyard.

  5. I made a beautiful thing for myself.

  6. I acquired and I knew her as myself with many sayings and I owned anything I needed.

  7. I asked myself many things and I provided for myself lust.

  8. My wisdom also stayed with me.

  9. Nothing that seen with my eye is denied to the mind.

  10. I did not deprive myself of joy, but my heart rejoiced in the fruits of all I labored.


  1. I went on and considered the connection of the wisdom and madness.

  2. Wisdom is greater than madness just as light is greater than darkness.

  3. Wise people will walk in the light, but fools walk in darkness.

  4. I said to myself, the fool walks in the dark then why should I only walk in the light?

  5. In my heart, I decided it was vain for me to not share the wisdom.

  6. A wise person is no better than the fool.

  7. The wise person dies like the fool.

  8. I detested this life is all the work done is for vain.


  1. I detested all the works that I have done, whether it would be good or bad.

  2. Who knows whether that person who did those works was wise or stupid?

  3. The one who takes control of the work I have done previously should have the same wisdom I had.

  4. My heart turned to despair over all the works I have done.

  5. I was the one who toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill and my legacy should be left to another who is able but not has yet toiled for that.

  6. The profit of my labor comes to the morals and the toil and anxiety of the hearts which they toil.

  7. Every day, people are in loss and sorrow and grief and their hearts are not rest.

  8. There is nothing better for mortals then to take advantage of all the good things they have in life.

  9. For who can take advantage of every moment of their life?

  10. The one who has wisdom and knowledge and joy in the one who conquered all suffering and their lives will no longer be in vain.


  1. There is a time for everything.

  2. A time for a life and death and a time for every cycle that occurs in life.

  3. Time is not determined by others but you can control your time.

  4. There are good and there are bad times in life.

  5. There is a balance in all time that you have in your life.

  6. You must not waste your time but take advantage of every moment of that time.

  7. Every single level has time.

  8. Time should always be used for peace and not war with anyone, including yourself.

  9. Workers will profit from their toil.

  10. The human race has been given time but the time is short.

  11. Everything is appropriate to its time but the timeless are what you learned through knowledge and wisdom.

  12. There is nothing better than to do well in your life.

  13. You must take advantage of the laborers which you have toiled over.

  14. Whatever you learn will endure forever and there will be no additions or subtractions from your learning.

  15. What now is has already been, was this to be what already is.


  1. Wickedness will always take place in your life and the lives are one else.

  2. All of your just and wicked actions will be judged at the end of your life.

  3. You will be tested at your death by everyone, both mortal and immortal.

  4. Human beings are no better than any other animal because all have breath and all will die.

  5. All go to the same place because all were treated the same in and all will return to the same.

  6. The souls of good people go up word in the bad people go downward, but truly nobody knows that for a fact.

  7. There is nothing better for mortals to do than to enjoy their life while on earth and not to worry about what comes after their life.


  1. From the hand of the oppressors come violence and no one underneath the oppression will have comfort.

  2. The ones who are dead will be more fortunate than the ones who are still alive.

  3. And they are better off than the ones who are yet unborn, for they have not seen the oppression.

  4. All the toil and skillful work is the rivalry between people.

  5. Only the fools consume their own flesh.

  6. Better is one person with peace than two people who are against one another.


  1. There are more hardships on this Earth.

  2. Those who are alone with no end to their toil will not receive the satisfaction from what they do.

  3. Two people are better than one and they will bring both blessings and hardships to one another.

  4. If one person fails, then the other person can help the fallen one.

  5. If two are together, then they can keep each other warm.

  6. Where one alone may be overcome, two together can resist.

  7. A poor and wise youth is better than an old and foolish king who no longer knows the world.

  8. The poor person came forth to rain despite the established kingship.

  9. All the living will come to support the poor and wise King.

  10. There is no end to all people, to all who were before and after the generations of the living.


  1. Guard yourselves constantly, for you never know when an evil comes for you.


  1. Do not be hasty and quick to take action before listening to your heart.

  2. Let your actions be few but meaningful.

  3. Dreams will come along but a fool’s voice is a multitude of words.

  4. When you make a vow, do not delay the fulfillment.

  5. Let not your actions make you guilty and do not claim any mistakes.

  6. Despite the dreams, you must always remember to think before you act.


  1. If you see oppression and violation of rights, do not be astonished, for every single person has a higher power watching over them.

  2. Be profitable in the land in such circumstances.

  3. The people suffering from their vices will never be satisfied with anything in their life.

  4. Great riches can devour those who keep it for themselves.

  5. If you labor, then your riches may not be material, but they may be spiritual.

  6. This is the most grievous evil which is under the sun.

  7. The riches may be lost, but the people who have the riches are still prideful.

  8. As they came forth they will return again to the place for they came forth.

  9. This is too grievous of an evil because they will just go as they came.

  10. All their days they will never be satisfied with their lives.

  11. It is appropriate to prosper from the laborers which you have sacrificed so much for.

  12. Those who get riches and property and powers to keep them through and their labors are rewarded with these blessings.

  13. May those people receive gifts by the power of the spirit.

  14. They won’t dwell on the shortness of life because they will take advantage of every moment they have in this life.


  1. There is another evil which is under the sun which weighs heavily on mankind.

  2. There is one who has riches and property and honor and lacks the evil desires from the world, but others take advantage of them.

  3. Should one have too many responsibilities, they may not be able to receive the fullness of joy of what they have labored for.

  4. Though their responsibilities came in vain, they will not be in the darkness forever.

  5. The ones who are unborn will have more peace because they will not know of the evils of the world.

  6. Even the ones who live a full life and do not enjoy the fruits of their labor will never be at peace with themselves.

  7. For their human toil is for their life, yet their life will never be satisfied.

  8. They will never make a profit because they took on too much in their lives.


  1. Human nature is known, and mortals cannot contend in judgment with the one who was stronger than they.

  2. The more responsibilities and more vanity will not receive as much profit in life.

  3. For only the man knows what is good for their life and the limited days of their life and they should spend it the best way they can.


  1. A good name is better than all the riches of the world at the day of death.

  2. For the end of every mortal life is death, and the living should never be afraid of death.

  3. You will grow wiser when your heart is at the saddest point.

  4. The heart of the wise is in the house of sadness.

  5. It is better to listen then to rebuke the words of the wise.

  6. The fool is the one who talks this talk of vanity.

  7. A fool can extort the wise and corrupt the heart.

  8. For the end it is always better than the beginning and at the end of the beginning will come again.

  9. Do not let anger upset you, for anger is an emotion of the foolish.

  10. Do not ask yourself if the former times were better because the future is always brighter.

  11. Wisdom is as good as riches and it will always make a profit for you.

  12. The protection of wisdom should be protected like money and knowledge is profitable because of the life you have.

  13. No one can make straight what others have made crooked.

  14. Enjoy the good things every day, but always remember the ones who do not have what you have.


  1. I have seen all manner of things in the worst days and I perish in the wickedness of the wicked.

  2. I was prone to excessiveness and not to wisdom. I was foolish and I thought death came before my time.

  3. It’s good to hold to wisdom and to never let wisdom go for you will succeed through that gift.

  4. Wisdom is the best defense for all people.

  5. There is no one on earth who can do everything perfectly and never do bad things.

  6. Do not take to heart everything that everyone says.

  7. Your heart will know whether or not you have been deceived.

  8. Wisdom and maybe far beyond you acquiring it.

  9. Wisdom is far-reaching and it is very deep.

  10. You should turn your heart to knowledge before pursuing wisdom and you must recognize the wickedness and foolishness of the world.


  1. The one who displeases wisdom will be entrapped by the darkness.

  2. If you reject wisdom, you will never help the greater cause.

  3. Your soul seeks and always has yet to find wisdom.

  4. You must be honest and pursue all the goals in your life to obtain wisdom.


  1. The wise person knows the explanation of things and their faces are also illuminated.

  2. Observe this, for it is a command of the powers that are higher than you.

  3. Do not go against the king and do not go into situations that are unpleasant, for the king will bring justice to all.

  4. Do not question the words of the wise.

  5. The one who is wise will observe without causing harm, and the wise person knows their time and place.

  6. There is a time and place for everything, but most do not know when that will be.

  7. They are ignorant for what is to come for no one will know what it will be like.

  8. No one can conquer their day of death and nothing can save you from the inevitable conclusion.

  9. All of these things that you should know and you should’ve known why as to every moment of your life.


  1. The wicked come and go from places that are good but they will be forgotten eventually.

  2. If these evils are not promptly executed, then the human hearts will be filled with the desire to commit.

  3. The evil one does evil every day and survives though they are not doing true right in the world.

  4. Their wicked ways will not sit well with the heavens, for their days will be numbered.

  5. Those who are just are treated as they have done evil and those who are wicked are treated as though they are just.

  6. There is nothing better for people than to be joyful and to reap the rewards of their labors.

  7. All shall come to know wisdom and to see the truth of the nature of the earth.

  8. No mortal can find the true meaning of their life, no matter how long they will search; they will be unable to find that out.


  1. The just the wise and their deeds are done because they find great blessings and joy from doing their work.

  2. Your life is the same as anyone else no matter how good they are or how wicked day, for all people come to one inevitable conclusion.

  3. All things that are done must be done on earth and the human heart is filled with their suffering, but it can be conquered through living a good life.

  4. Within all the living there is hope for a good life.

  5. The living know that they are going to die, but the dead no longer know anything.

  6. For them, all things have perished and they will never have to do anything ever again.

  7. Go the way of the life of the enlightened ones, because it is through that that your work will be favored by all.

  8. At all times, be clean, and spare not the things that are luxurious.
    Enjoy life with everyone you love and enjoy all things you do in your life for it is short.

  9. Anything that you do, do with the power you possess, for there will be no worker planning for knowledge or wisdom for you are going.


  1. Again, under the sun, life is a race throughout your entire life where times misfortune will come upon all people no matter who they are.

  2. Human beings know more of their own life than any other animals upon the face of the earth, and what is higher than them, and what comes after death.

  3. See this wise deed under the sun which is magnificent.

  4. In the city there may be mighty kings who do great things throughout their life.

  5. But there may also be those who are poor and wise and they will not be remembered.

  6. Wisdom is better than force, but wisdom will not be remembered as well as force.

  7. The wise are better heated than the fool.

  8. Wisdom is better than any weaponry or any wars.


  1. What the dead corrupt and spoil, the living will take in as riches.

  2. The wise people turn towards the right and the foolish people turn towards the wrong.

  3. The fool lacks understanding and calls everyone else.

  4. Their anger bursts upon them and they do not know their place in society.

  5. There are other evils, like the mistakes that proceed from those who are passive.

  6. They are in high positions and all the great and the rich sit below them.

  7. The fools have slaves who are better off than those who are rich.

  8. Whoever works may die as a result and whoever goes into an unknown places they may face death.

  9. Whoever does the work of fools may be hurt or they are in danger.

  10. If the tools are not put to good use, then there must be more effort, but the advantage of being wise is success.

  11. If the danger comes before this call and then there is no advantage for those who seek it.

  12. The wise people are in favor because of the words of their mouth but the fools consume them.

  13. The talk of the fool is utter madness.

  14. They will multiply words and they will claim to know what is to come but no one in reality knows.

  15. The fools wear the toil of everyone so they do not know what will happen and they will be afraid.


  1. All people face the same dangers every day no matter who they are.

  2. The people who do not know what is to come are happy, but that is the way it should be.

  3. You should never go out into the world and be faced with suffering.

  4. You shall go out and rejoice, for every moment that you have and you shall have enjoyed while you are living, for you do not know when death will come your way.

  5. Your thoughts and actions will not determine what happens when you die, all that you know is that you will die and that your legacy will continue no matter how small it may be.

  6. Set forth upon the face of the waters and you may find yourself again. You do not know what misfortunes may comment the earth.


  1. When there are clouds in the sky, they may pour out rain and whatever happens in any part, it will be so.

  2. The one who waits for something to happen will never take advantage of what has already come to them.

  3. Just as you do not know whether something is living or dead when you do not see it, so you do not know the workings of nature which is unpredictable.

  4. In the morning you work, but at the evening do not be idle, for you do not know what will be successful and will turn out well.


  1. Being young is pleasant for the eyes to be able to see.

  2. However many years people live, let them enjoy all the years they have, and remember that their days of darkness have become.

  3. Rejoice what you are young and let your heart be glad at the days you have and you should follow the way of your heart and the visions that you hold in your mind.

  4. Yet every action that you have in life will bring you to judgment so banish all the misery from your heart and remove all the pain from your body for your life is fleeting away like a passing memory.


  1. Remember the creator all the days of your life and you will have no pleasure in the evil days that befall you.

  2. Before anything happens upon the face of the earth, remember that your death is inevitable.

  3. When all hope seems lost and even the strongest have given in, remember that you must stand up for your own survival.

  4. When everything is quiet, remember the ones who work the hardest are the ones who suffer the most.

  5. When one is afraid of certain things and sees perils in the streets, remember that everything on earth has a cycle and that you are one part of the great cycle of life.

  6. Before you gain riches and before your riches have gone, remember that the greatest riches of them all are the ones that are not worth any money upon the face of the earth.

  7. And remember when you die, you return to the earth, as does everyone, and that the cycle continues even if you have left.

  8. Not all things are to be done in vain, for if you live a virtuous life, you will be remembered forever.


  1. Remember the words of the wise for they may be weighted and scrutinized, but they will hold true.

  2. Remember that these sayings are written down so that one may come to know the truth.

  3. The sayings of the wise are the ones that should be hurt the most and the one that should be adhered to the most.

  4. Beware of the words of the foolish, for they may lead you astray.

  5. The last word is when all is heard, do not fear death but live the good life, for this is for all mankind.

  6. Remember that you will be judged after you die for every work you do whether they are good or bad.