In a recent article (Big and Mighty, Lotte Thomsen et al. SCIENCE vol. 331 no. 6016 January 26, 2011 page 477) it was mentioned that toddlers are intrinsically motivated to help others achieve their goals.  This was not the point of the article but was a reference to another article (F. Warneken, M. Tomasello SCIENCE 311, 3243 (2009)). 

It is no stretch to believe that adults are able to access the toddler in themselves, so I take it that adults also are motivated to help others succeed.  That is hard to believe if one is driving a car, but the drivers you notice are the ones who are unhelpful; most are obliging. 

So permitting another person to help you should make them feel good, particularly if they can do it with no injury to themselves. 

The other side of that would be that asking for help and being snubbed renders the snubber unhappy.  Of course in my rather quixotic chosen task of trying to remove prejudice from the world and maybe to save the world in the process I ask for help all the time.  It would be shameful not to. 

Little help has been forthcoming so far, and my impulse is simply to shrug it off and continue.  Now it appears that instead of spreading joy and light I am spreading desolation and woe. 

Oh well.  You can’t win them all.

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