"'Up in our country we are human!' said the hunter. 'And since we are human we help each other. We don't like to hear anybody say thanks for that. What I get today you may get tomorrow. Up here we say that by gifts one makes slaves and by whips one makes dogs.'"
- Inuit hunter in Greenland quoted in Peter Freuchen's Book of the Eskimos
What's great about this? Everything. In a world of debt and tabulation, a world of accounting, taxes, haves and have not, in a world where we are now identifying ourselves as percentages -- the 1%, the 99%, the 47% (I mean - isn't this exactly how we didn't want to be defined? What all fear of "the future" is based upon - that we will be nothing but numbers or statistics?) -- here is something simple to remind us that even though we think we have conquered nature and aborted any divine plan that may or may not have ever been in place, life is still seasonal, fortune still cyclical, and humanity based upon open-handedness.
I suppose if you want to be cynical, you can call it enlightened self-interest. I prefer calling it the instinct for connection and intimacy - perhaps the thing that lead us to tell stories around fires and draw on cave walls. I prefer to think of giving as the first seed of love.