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Chapter 11

Translation and Transliteration of 

1Send your bread forth upon the waters; for after many days you will find it.

sha-LAKH lakh-ME-kha al-pe-NEI ha-MA-yim, ki-ve-ROV ha-ya-MIM tim-TZA-e-NU

אשַׁלַּ֥ח לַחְמְךָ֖ עַל־פְּנֵ֣י הַמָּ֑יִם כִּֽי־בְרֹ֥ב הַיָּמִ֖ים תִּמְצָאֶֽנּוּ׃

2Distribute portions to seven or even to eight, for you cannot know what misfortune may occur on earth.

ten-KHE-lek l'-shiv-AH v'-GAM lish-MO-na, KEE lo tay-DA mah yi-HE-yeh ra-AH al ha-A-retz

בתֶּן־חֵ֥לֶק לְשִׁבְעָ֖ה וְגַ֣ם לִשְׁמוֹנָ֑ה כִּ֚י לֹ֣א תֵדַ֔ע מַה־יִּהְיֶ֥ה רָעָ֖ה עַל־הָאָֽרֶץ׃

3If the clouds are filled, they will pour down rain on the earth; and if a tree falls to the south or to the north, the tree will stay where it falls.

im-yi-ma-LOU he-a-VIM GE-shem al ha-A-retz ya-REE-kou, v'-im-yi-POL AYTZ ba-da-ROUM, v'-im ba-TSA-fohn me-KOM she-yi-POL ha-Aytz, shaM ye-HU

גאִם־יִמָּלְא֨וּ הֶעָבִ֥ים גֶּ֙שֶׁם֙ עַל־הָאָ֣רֶץ יָרִ֔יקוּ וְאִם־יִפּ֥וֹל עֵ֛ץ בַּדָּר֖וֹם וְאִ֣ם בַּצָּפ֑וֹן מְק֛וֹם שֶׁיִּפּ֥וֹל הָעֵ֖ץ שָׁ֥ם יְהֽוּא׃

4If one watches the wind, he will never sow; and if one observes the clouds, he will never reap.

SHO-mer RU-akh LO yiz-RA, ve-RO-eh ve-a-VIM LO yik-TZOR.

דשֹׁמֵ֥ר ר֖וּחַ לֹ֣א יִזְרָ֑ע וְרֹאֶ֥ה בֶעָבִ֖ים לֹ֥א יִקְצֽוֹר׃

5Just as you do not know how the lifebreath passes into the limbs within the womb of the pregnant woman, so you cannot foresee the actions of Hashem, who causes all things to happen.

ka-a-SHER e-N'-KHA yo-DAY-a ma-DE-rekh ha-ROO-aKH ka-a-TSA-meem b'-BE-ten ha-me-le-AH ka-KA lo tay-DA et ma-a-SEH ha-e-lo-HEEM a-SHER ya-a-SEH et ha-KOL

הכַּאֲשֶׁ֨ר אֵֽינְךָ֤ יוֹדֵ֙עַ֙ מַה־דֶּ֣רֶךְ הָר֔וּחַ כַּעֲצָמִ֖ים בְּבֶ֣טֶן הַמְּלֵאָ֑ה כָּ֗כָה לֹ֤א תֵדַע֙ אֶת־מַעֲשֵׂ֣ה הָֽאֱלֹהִ֔ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר יַעֲשֶׂ֖ה אֶת־הַכֹּֽל׃

6Sow your seed in the morning, and don't hold back your hand in the evening, since you don't know which is going to succeed, the one or the other, or if both are equally good.

ba-BO-ker ze-RA et zar-E-kha, v'-la-E-rev al-ta-NACH ya-DE-kha, KI eyn-KHA yo-DE-a EI ze-yikh-SHAR ha-ZEH o-ZEH, v'-im sh'-NE-hem k'-e-KHAD to-VEEM.

ובַּבֹּ֙קֶר֙ זְרַ֣ע אֶת־זַרְעֶ֔ךָ וְלָעֶ֖רֶב אַל־תַּנַּ֣ח יָדֶ֑ךָ כִּי֩ אֵֽינְךָ֨ יוֹדֵ֜עַ אֵ֣י זֶ֤ה יִכְשָׁר֙ הֲזֶ֣ה אוֹ־זֶ֔ה וְאִם־שְׁנֵיהֶ֥ם כְּאֶחָ֖ד טוֹבִֽים׃

7How sweet is the light, what a delight for the eyes to behold the sun!

u-ma-TOK ha-oR v'-TOV la-ei-NA-yim lir-OT et ha-SHA-mesh

זוּמָת֖וֹק הָא֑וֹר וְט֥וֹב לַֽעֵינַ֖יִם לִרְא֥וֹת אֶת־הַשָּֽׁמֶשׁ׃

8Even if a man lives many years, let him enjoy himself in all of them, remembering how many the days of darkness are going to be. The only future is nothingness!

KI im-sha-NEEM har-BEH yikh-YEH ha-A-dam b'-KU-lam yis-MAKH v'-yiz-KOR et-y'-MEI ha-KHO-shekh, KI-har-BEH yih-YU kol-she-BA ha-VEL.

חכִּ֣י אִם־שָׁנִ֥ים הַרְבֵּ֛ה יִחְיֶ֥ה הָאָדָ֖ם בְּכֻלָּ֣ם יִשְׂמָ֑ח וְיִזְכֹּר֙ אֶת־יְמֵ֣י הַחֹ֔שֶׁךְ כִּֽי־הַרְבֵּ֥ה יִהְי֖וּ כׇּל־שֶׁבָּ֥א הָֽבֶל׃

9O youth, enjoy yourself while you are young! Let your heart lead you to enjoyment in the days of your youth. Follow the desires of your heart and the glances of your eyes—but know well that Hashem will call you to account for all such things—

s'-MAKH ba-KHUR b'-yal-du-TE-kha vee-tee-v'-KHA li-b'-KHA bee-MAY v'-khu-ro-TE-kha v'-ha-LAYKH b'-dar-KHAY li-b'-KHA uv-mar-AY ay-NE-kha v'-DA KEE al kol AY-leh y'-vee-a-KHA ha-e-lo-HEEM ba-mish-PAT

טשְׂמַ֧ח בָּח֣וּר בְּיַלְדוּתֶ֗יךָ וִֽיטִֽיבְךָ֤ לִבְּךָ֙ בִּימֵ֣י בְחוּרוֹתֶ֔יךָ וְהַלֵּךְ֙ בְּדַרְכֵ֣י לִבְּךָ֔ וּבְמַרְאֵ֖י עֵינֶ֑יךָ וְדָ֕ע כִּ֧י עַל־כׇּל־אֵ֛לֶּה יְבִֽיאֲךָ֥ הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים בַּמִּשְׁפָּֽט׃

 11:9   O youth, enjoy yourself while you are young!

The Hebrew word for ‘youth’ is bachur (בחור), related to the word bachar (בחר) which means to ‘chose.’ The years of one’s youth, from adolescence to early adulthood, are specifically a time of life-impacting choices. The young adult observes the world critically, and makes decisions that can impact the rest of his or her life regarding where to live, who to marry and what to do professionally. The young person mentioned here is encouraged to “follow the desires of your heart and the glances of your eyes,” but is cautioned not to be led astray by desires, and is reminded that there will be accountability for these choices.


10and banish care from your mind, and pluck sorrow out of your flesh! For youth and black hair are fleeting.

v'-ha-SEIR ka-AS mi-LEE-be-KHA v'-ha-a-VAYR ra-AH mi-b'-sa-RE-kha kee ha-ya-l'-DUT v'-ha-sha-kha-ROOT ha-VEL

יוְהָסֵ֥ר כַּ֙עַס֙ מִלִּבֶּ֔ךָ וְהַעֲבֵ֥ר רָעָ֖ה מִבְּשָׂרֶ֑ךָ כִּֽי־הַיַּלְד֥וּת וְהַֽשַּׁחֲר֖וּת הָֽבֶל׃