Eccelsiasticus – Qoholeth (the preacher) - chapter 2

The book known to us as Eccelsiasticus* – in hebrew Qoholeth. the preacher – is one of the most luminous wisdom writings. But as it comes in the Apocrypha it is little know. I have here rendered into modern gender-neutral language.
*Not to be confused with Ecclesiastes, a book of ritual in the OT.

My child if you aspire to serve the Lord prepare yourself for an ordeal.
Be sincere of heart and steadfast, and do not be alarmed when disaster comes.
Hold to your vision and do not abandon it, that you may be honoured in old age.
Whatever happens to you: accept it, and in the uncertainties of your humble state be patient –

     since gold is tested in the fire and they who are chosen in the furnace of humiliation.
Trust in your inner truth and it will uphold you. Walk a straight line. Keep faith.

You who are awed by the raw power in the universe – remember that everything is in flux,
so don’t give up in tough times lest you lose sight of your real self.
You who are awed by the raw power in the universe –
trust your inner experience and you will not be denied your reward.
You who are awed by the raw power in the universe – 

     pray for the common good, for lasting happiness, and for mercy.

Look at the record of faith and see if anyone who truly trusted in this power was defeated? 

     Or who truly connected with this power and was abandoned?
     Or who called on it and was ignored?
For this raw power in the universe is full of love and healing, regrowing what is broken
     and responding compassionately in extremis.

Woe betide the faint-hearted and lazy; and those who try to have it both ways.
Woe betide those unwilling to commit, for they are without protection.
Woe betide you if you give way to despair – what will you do if things get worse?

They who sense this power seek to understand its principles; 

     and love all who make the same discoveries.
They who sense this power seek to align with it;
and find their greatest satisfaction in the groundedness it brings.
They who sense this power hold their hearts open, and honour whatever life brings.

Let us rely on this power of the Lord, not on our fellow humans or their technology; 

     for as is its immensity – so is its intimacy.

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