A wealthy man holding scales hands out money to the poor. This is quite a contrast to the Five of Pentacles with a shut door between the poor on the outside and the rich on the inside. Also where the poor might have been too proud to take charity, or the rich unwilling to give to those who they deemed unworthy of their generosity.
Here, in the Six of Pentacles, the poor kneel and hold out hands for the money, not too proud to take it, and the merchant freely gives it, not judging them as he does so. Both gain in this exchange.
The question that must be asked when this card appears, however, is which is the querent? Do they have too much and need to restore balance to their lives by giving some of it away? Meaning, perhaps, that it's time to clear out the closet and give old clothes to a local charity, do volunteer work or make a donation? Even, perhaps, help out a friend in need?
Or is it time to accept that gift of money being offered by a generous relative, go to a free clinic, try for a scholarship or seek other types of assistance?
Balanced as this give and take is, it poses a quandary not seen in the other sixes. Which is how to freely give and take. The giver must give freely, not because they want to feel superior or good about themselves. Likewise, the querent must not let pride, resentment or shame get in the way of taking. We all need assistance now and then.
The message to the querent might well be to accept what you're offered now. It may be that in the future you'll have a chance to restore the balance by helping out another as you were helped.
Learn the Six of Pentacles meaning in reversal in our reversed card meanings.