The Bible in Its Traditions

Sirach 34:1–8


The hopes of a senseless man are empty and false; and dreams extol the imprudent.

Sir34:Sir31:1  The hopes of a man void of understanding are vain and false: and dreams lift up fools.

Like one who chases a shadow and pursues the wind, so also is one who pays attention to lying visions.

Sir34:Sir31:2  Whoso regardeth dreams is like him that catcheth at a shadow, and followeth after the wind.

In the vision of dreams, one thing represents another, as when a mask is before the face of a man.

Sir34:Sir31:3  The vision of dreams is the resemblance of one thing to another, even as the likeness of a face to a face.

What can be cleansed by the unclean? And what truth can be spoken from a lie?

Sir34:Sir31:4  Of an unclean thing what can be cleansed? and from that thing which is false what truth can come?

Erroneous divinations and false signs and the dreams of evildoers are emptiness.

Sir34:Sir31:5  Divinations, and soothsayings, and dreams, are vain: and the heart fancieth, as a woman’s heart in travail.

For your heart suffers from imagination, like a woman suffering in childbirth. Unless it is a visitation sent from the Most High, you should not set your heart upon it.

Sir34:Sir31:6  If they be not sent from the most High in thy visitation, set not thy heart upon them.

For dreams have caused many to go astray, and those who have hoped in them have fallen away.

Sir34:Sir31:7  For dreams have deceived many, and they have failed that put their trust in them.

The word of the law will be fulfilled without a lie, and wisdom will be made plain in the mouths of the faithful.

Sir34:Sir31:8  The law shall be found perfect without lies: and wisdom is perfection to a faithful mouth.