Friday, July 10, 2015

Perplexing advice - Ecclesiastes 10 and 11

Here is a second reading of chapters 10 and 11. About 40% of my first reading changed as I conformed this rereading to the discipline of the computer-enforced concordance.

This set of almost random proverbs is curious. 10:3 seems right out of Monty Python. Some of it quite disconnected. Some of this is careful and apt advice (e.g. 10:20). Some of the implications may not be so good. Who knows what people thought in those days about right and left (10:2) - seeing how my heart and probably yours too, is literally on the left. So take care what you read.

My high-level semantic domains for Ecclestiastes
These do change as the whole is molded...
This completes Ecclesiastes (=Qohelet) for now. The only remaining old ground for me is Job (which I first read in 2009).  I will not rush to complete it, for if I learned something from Deuteronomy about Job, who knows but that I might not learn something more somewhere else before tackling again this rather long and difficult poem. I will not lose anything, for every word I look at sinks the whole just a little deeper in. In fact, some method of exposing the logic of my glosses is needed particularly for analysis of the 'semantic' domains and sub-domains I am assigning them. Much consideration required here.

Is it futility? All this effort in my old age? I am not Qohelet so I don't always think so, but sometimes I do. Perhaps I can hold both extremes in my heart - cold and hot water. I should be careful where I pour it. Right now we could do with a weekend of thick clouds and showers - under the sun. May it come thoroughly for Western Canada to beat the fires and the locusts.
Qohelet 10 Fn Min Max Syll
זְב֣וּבֵי מָ֔וֶת יַבְאִ֥ישׁ יַבִּ֖יעַ שֶׁ֣מֶן רוֹקֵ֑חַ
יָקָ֛ר מֵחָכְמָ֥ה מִכָּב֖וֹד סִכְל֥וּת מְעָֽט
1 B A dead fly ferments a stink in perfumer's oil.
Rarely from shrewdness, from glory, is a little silliness.
3d 4B 15
לֵ֤ב חָכָם֙ לִֽימִינ֔וֹ וְלֵ֥ב כְּסִ֖יל לִשְׂמֹאלֽוֹ 2 C The heart of the shrewd is on its right hand and the heart of the dullard is on its left. 3e 4C 13
וְגַם־בַּדֶּ֛רֶךְ כְּשֶׁסָּכָ֥ל‬ הֹלֵ֖ךְ לִבּ֣וֹ חָסֵ֑ר
וְאָמַ֥ר לַכֹּ֖ל סָכָ֥ל הֽוּא
3 And even in the way as the silly one walks, its heart is lacking,
and it says to all - it is silly.
3d 4B 15
אִם־ר֤וּחַ הַמּוֹשֵׁל֙ תַּעֲלֶ֣ה עָלֶ֔יךָ מְקוֹמְךָ֖ אַל־תַּנַּ֑ח
כִּ֣י מַרְפֵּ֔א יַנִּ֖יחַ חֲטָאִ֥ים גְּדוֹלִֽים
4 If the wind of the governor ascends against you, do not repose in your place,
for healing gives repose to great sins.
3e 4C 18
יֵ֣שׁ רָעָ֔ה רָאִ֖יתִי תַּ֣חַת הַשָּׁ֑מֶשׁ
כִּשְׁגָגָ֕ה שֶׁיֹּצָ֖א מִלִּפְנֵ֥י הַשַּׁלִּֽיט
5 B There is evil I have seen, under the sun,
as a going astray that emerges from the presence of one who has authority.
3e 4B 11
נִתַּ֣ן הַסֶּ֔כֶל בַּמְּרוֹמִ֖ים רַבִּ֑ים
וַעֲשִׁירִ֖ים בַּשֵּׁ֥פֶל יֵשֵֽׁבוּ
6 Silliness is given excessive exaltation,
and the rich abased sit.
3e 4B 10
רָאִ֥יתִי עֲבָדִ֖ים עַל־סוּסִ֑ים
וְשָׂרִ֛ים הֹלְכִ֥ים כַּעֲבָדִ֖ים עַל־הָאָֽרֶץ
7 I have seen servants on horses,
and nobility walking as servants on the earth.
3d 4A 9
חֹפֵ֥ר גּוּמָּ֖ץ בּ֣וֹ יִפּ֑וֹל
וּפֹרֵ֥ץ גָּדֵ֖ר יִשְּׁכֶ֥נּוּ נָחָֽשׁ
8 One who excavates a pothole will fall into it.
And one who breaches a fence, a snake will take an interest in him.
3e 4B 7
מַסִּ֣יעַ אֲבָנִ֔ים יֵעָצֵ֖ב בָּהֶ֑ם
בּוֹקֵ֥עַ עֵצִ֖ים יִסָּ֥כֶן בָּֽם
9 One who pulls out stones will be pained by them.
One who splits trees will be destitute in them.
3e 4B 11
אִם־קֵהָ֣ה הַבַּרְזֶ֗ל וְהוּא֙ לֹא־פָנִ֣ים קִלְקַ֔ל וַחֲיָלִ֖ים יְגַבֵּ֑ר
וְיִתְר֥וֹן הַכְשֵׁ֖ר‬ חָכְמָֽה
10 If iron is dull and he does not fine-tune its surfaces, then it will prevail with force,
and what remains of shrewdness to succeed.
3e 4B 19
אִם־יִשֹּׁ֥ךְ הַנָּחָ֖שׁ בְּלוֹא־לָ֑חַשׁ
וְאֵ֣ין יִתְר֔וֹן לְבַ֖עַל הַלָּשֽׁוֹן
11 If the snake is interested even without conjuring,
then there is nothing remaining for the owner of the tongue.
3e 4B 10
דִּבְרֵ֥י פִי־חָכָ֖ם חֵ֑ן
וְשִׂפְת֥וֹת כְּסִ֖יל תְּבַלְּעֶֽנּוּ
12 The words of the mouth of the shrewd are graciousness,
but the lips of the dullard swallow it.
3e 4A 5
תְּחִלַּ֥ת דִּבְרֵי־פִ֖יהוּ סִכְל֑וּת
וְאַחֲרִ֣ית פִּ֔יהוּ הוֹלֵל֖וּת רָעָֽה
13 The profanation of the words of his mouth is silliness,
and the aftereffect of his mouth is evil boasting.
3e 4B 8
וְהַסָּכָ֖ל יַרְבֶּ֣ה דְבָרִ֑ים
לֹא־יֵדַ֤ע הָאָדָם֙ מַה־שֶׁיִּֽהְיֶ֔ה וַאֲשֶׁ֤ר יִֽהְיֶה֙ מֵֽאַחֲרָ֔יו מִ֖י יַגִּ֥יד לֽוֹ
14 And the silly has many words. The earthling does not know what is that is and what will be.
After it, who will announce it?
3e 4C 9
עֲמַ֥ל הַכְּסִילִ֖ים תְּיַגְּעֶ֑נּוּ
אֲשֶׁ֥ר לֹֽא־יָדַ֖ע לָלֶ֥כֶת אֶל־עִֽיר
15 The toil of the dullards wearies them,
that it does not know how to walk to a city.
3e 4A 9
אִֽי־לָ֣ךְ אֶ֔רֶץ שֶׁמַּלְכֵּ֖ךְ נָ֑עַר
וְשָׂרַ֖יִךְ בַּבֹּ֥קֶר יֹאכֵֽלוּ
16 Woe to you, earth. Your king is a youth,
and your princes eat in the morning.
3e 4B 9
אַשְׁרֵ֣יךְ אֶ֔רֶץ שֶׁמַּלְכֵּ֖ךְ בֶּן־חוֹרִ֑ים
וְשָׂרַ֙יִךְ֙ בָּעֵ֣ת יֹאכֵ֔לוּ בִּגְבוּרָ֖ה וְלֹ֥א בַשְּׁתִֽי
17 Happy are you, earth, that your king is the child of the freeborn,
and your nobility in time eat for valour and not for partying.
3e 4B 10
בַּעֲצַלְתַּ֖יִם יִמַּ֣ךְ הַמְּקָרֶ֑ה
וּבְשִׁפְל֥וּת יָדַ֖יִם יִדְלֹ֥ף הַבָּֽיִת
18 In sloth what transpires is diminished,
and in the abasement of hands the house leaks.
3e 4B 9
לִשְׂחוֹק֙ עֹשִׂ֣ים לֶ֔חֶם וְיַ֖יִן יְשַׂמַּ֣ח חַיִּ֑ים
וְהַכֶּ֖סֶף יַעֲנֶ֥ה אֶת־הַכֹּֽל
19 In laughter is the making of bread and wine makes lives glad,
but silver answers everything.
3e 4B 13
גַּ֣ם בְּמַדָּֽעֲךָ֗ מֶ֚לֶךְ אַל־תְּקַלֵּ֔ל וּבְחַדְרֵי֙ מִשְׁכָּ֣בְךָ֔ אַל־תְּקַלֵּ֖ל עָשִׁ֑יר
כִּ֣י ע֤וֹף הַשָּׁמַ֙יִם֙ יוֹלִ֣יךְ אֶת־הַקּ֔וֹל וּבַ֥עַל כְּנָפַ֖יִם יַגֵּ֥יד דָּבָֽר
20 B Even in your knowledge do not slight a king, and in your rooms lying down, do not slight the rich,
for the fowl of the heavens will go with the voice, and an owner of wings will announce the matter.
3e 4C 24
Qohelet 11 Fn Min Max Syll
שַׁלַּ֥ח לַחְמְךָ֖ עַל־פְּנֵ֣י הַמָּ֑יִם
כִּֽי־בְרֹ֥ב הַיָּמִ֖ים תִּמְצָאֶֽנּוּ
1 Send your bread on the face of the waters,
for in many days you will find it.
3e 4B 11
תֶּן־חֵ֥לֶק לְשִׁבְעָ֖ה וְגַ֣ם לִשְׁמוֹנָ֑ה
כִּ֚י לֹ֣א תֵדַ֔ע מַה־יִּהְיֶ֥ה רָעָ֖ה עַל־הָאָֽרֶץ
2 Give a share to seven and even to eight,
for you do not know what evil will be on the earth.
3e 4C 11
אִם־יִמָּלְא֨וּ הֶעָבִ֥ים גֶּ֙שֶׁם֙ עַל־הָאָ֣רֶץ יָרִ֔יקוּ וְאִם־יִפּ֥וֹל עֵ֛ץ בַּדָּר֖וֹם וְאִ֣ם בַּצָּפ֑וֹן
מְק֛וֹם שֶׁיִּפּ֥וֹל הָעֵ֖ץ שָׁ֥ם יְהֽוּא
3 If the thick clouds are full of showers, on the earth they empty themselves, or if a tree falls in the southern region or if in the north,
the place where the tree falls, there it is.
3d 4B 29
שֹׁמֵ֥ר ר֖וּחַ לֹ֣א יִזְרָ֑ע
וְרֹאֶ֥ה בֶעָבִ֖ים לֹ֥א יִקְצֽוֹר
4 One who shelters wind will not sow,
and one who sees thick clouds will not reap.
3e 4B 7
כַּאֲשֶׁ֨ר אֵֽינְךָ֤ יוֹדֵ֙עַ֙ מַה־דֶּ֣רֶךְ הָר֔וּחַ כַּעֲצָמִ֖ים בְּבֶ֣טֶן הַמְּלֵאָ֑ה
כָּ֗כָה לֹ֤א תֵדַע֙ אֶת־מַעֲשֵׂ֣ה הָֽאֱלֹהִ֔ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר יַעֲשֶׂ֖ה אֶת־הַכֹּֽל
5 As you have no knowledge what the way of the spirit is, with respect to the bones in the filled belly,
so also you do not know the deed of God that does it all.
3e 4C 24
בַּבֹּ֙קֶר֙ זְרַ֣ע אֶת־זַרְעֶ֔ךָ וְלָעֶ֖רֶב אַל־תַּנַּ֣ח יָדֶ֑ךָ
כִּי֩ אֵֽינְךָ֨ יוֹדֵ֜ע‬ אֵ֣י זֶ֤ה יִכְשָׁר֙ הֲזֶ֣ה אוֹ־זֶ֔ה וְאִם־שְׁנֵיהֶ֥ם כְּאֶחָ֖ד טוֹבִֽים
6 In the morning sow your seed and in the evening do not let your hand rest,
for it is not for you to know how this will succeed, this or that, or if the two of them as one are good.
3e 4C 19
וּמָת֖וֹק הָא֑וֹר
וְט֥וֹב לַֽעֵינַ֖יִם לִרְא֥וֹת אֶת־הַשָּֽׁמֶשׁ
7 Sweet is the light,
and it is good for the eyes to see the sun.
3e 4A 5
כִּ֣י אִם־שָׁנִ֥ים הַרְבֵּ֛ה יִחְיֶ֥ה הָאָדָ֖ם בְּכֻלָּ֣ם יִשְׂמָ֑ח
וְיִזְכֹּר֙ אֶת־יְמֵ֣י הַחֹ֔שֶׁךְ כִּֽי־הַרְבֵּ֥ה יִהְי֖וּ כָּל־שֶׁבָּ֥א הָֽבֶל
8 B For if the earthling lives many years and in all of them is glad,
let it remember the days of darkness for many they will be. All that comes is futility.
3d 4B 16
שְׂמַ֧ח בָּח֣וּר בְּיַלְדוּתֶ֗יךָ וִֽיטִֽיבְךָ֤ לִבְּךָ֙ בִּימֵ֣י בְחוּרוֹתֶ֔ךָ וְהַלֵּךְ֙ בְּדַרְכֵ֣י לִבְּךָ֔ וּבְמַרְאֵ֖י עֵינֶ֑יךָ
וְדָ֕ע כִּ֧י עַל־כָּל־אֵ֛לֶּה יְבִֽיאֲךָ֥ הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים בַּמִּשְׁפָּֽט
9 Be glad, chosen one, in your childhood and let your heart make you feel good in your chosen days and walk in the ways of your heart and in the regard of your eyes,
and know that over all these this God will conduct you into judgment.
3c 4C 35
וְהָסֵ֥ר כַּ֙עַס֙ מִלִּבֶּ֔ךָ וְהַעֲבֵ֥ר רָעָ֖ה מִבְּשָׂרֶ֑ךָ
כִּֽי־הַיַּלְד֥וּת וְהַֽשַּׁחֲר֖וּת הָֽבֶל
10 So put aside grief from your heart and pass through evil from your flesh,
for childhood and the times of dawn are futility.
3e 4A 19

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