“This experience revealed that people, perhaps universally, would far rather engage in legitimate exchange than be the object of another's pity. There is something in one-way giving that erodes human dignity. This kind of compassion subtly communicates to the recipient, 'You have nothing of value that I desire in return.' One-way mercy ministry, as kind hearted as the giver may be and as well-intentioned, is an unmistakable form of put-down.
On the other hand, everyone loves to engage in the process of exchange. Everyone loves to find a bargain. There is something life affirming when someone comes to the bargaining table with a resource to barter. The playing field is leveled. The eying of each other's commodity takes place from both sides of the bargaining table.
Both sides have a choice; both sides weigh the worth of the other's commodity. A deal is struck, an exchange is made. And remarkably, both parties leave the encounter feeling like they have gained more value than they brought.”