We Love the People Whom We Help More Than We Love Those Who Help Us
Ancient Jewish wisdom makes a point that my following example illustrates. A judge was once waiting for a bus in the rain when another man walked up, soaking wet because he did not have an umbrella. The judge asks the man if he would like to stand next to him under the umbrella. The man thankfully accepts the shelter with the judge, and when the bus comes, they both climb aboard and get off at different stops. The next day the judge goes to work at the court. The first case he sees that day is between two people. One is a stranger, but the other is the fellow whom the judge invited to stand under the umbrella. The judge gets up from his bench and recuses himself, saying he cannot sit on this case because he had offered this man shelter from the rain the day before. The judge who was being reassigned to the case said that he did not understand the first judge's reasoning: “I don't understand. Had he let you under his umbrella, I would understand you recusing yourself, because you might treat him favorably for the favor he did you. But why does it matter that you offered him an umbrella?”
This second judge did not understand this biblical business secret or he would not have said this. Doing a favor for somebody else causes you to love him or her more. The first judge was well aware of this principle of ancient Jewish wisdom and understood that it would be wrong not to recuse himself because he would show ...