“I give one thing to you, you give one thing to me», A saying whose meaning is ‘natural’ rather than contractual. There is – in fact – in children and young people a spontaneity that moves souls and makes them ‘naturally’ eager to exchange, to share.
“The inclination to exchange, to barter, to exchange one object for another, is common to all men …”, says Adam Smith, Scottish philosopher and economist.
However, there is a tendency to assimilate this way of saying to the Latin phrase “do ut des»(I give you so that you give me). A phrase that is not easy to interpret, since it could be understood in its more ‘commercial’ and less spontaneous meaning. In short, an exchange that smacks of ‘profit’.
Friendship between young people and children is a mutual exchange, ‘naturally’ balanced, if not ‘conditioned’ by external, adult interventions. In the literal sense, in fact, the translated Latin phrase means “I give so that you give” (and not “me” to give), and its indefinite sense appears magnificently universal.