Visite nuestro sitio/Visit our home page:

Jewish Tours Argentina

Ecclesiastes, Fleeting and timeless

Biblical Philosophy

Support for this interpretation can be found in the rabbinic literature, in a midrash that relates this passage directly to the story of Cain and Abel: “‘If a man fathers a hundred children’: This refers to Cain, who had a hundred sons but gained no satisfaction from his wealth or the goodness of the world…. ‘Astillborn is better’—this refers to his brother Abel.”42 For the stillborn is born in hevel. In Kohelet’s view, man is disparaged not because fleeting life is itself unworthy, but because he has made it so by virtue of his actions. It is better, then, to have the most transient existence of Abel, whose life was short but exemplary, than the misery of Cain, whose long life became a curse.


The third stage covers the last four chapters of the book. By this point, hevel has lost any trace of the negativity which it carried in the early chapters. It is never tied to a second word—never “transience and,” together with something distasteful. On the contrary, in these final chapters, all uses of hevel are associated, directly or indirectly, with joy, or simha

Next Page

Read about our specially designed tours Click here to know who we are Customers Testimonials  Site map  
News and Media  Prices Directory of Synagogues  
More info? Click here to send us an email

Terms and Conditions

Related links Other services