We are frequently asked to make contributions towards various causes, organisations and society. Most commonly, those are obvious, direct contributions, such as visible charity or fees paid and services rendered to a club. But what about all those, often inconspicuous contributions we make, like raising kids, or earning and spending money to keep the economy ‘ticking over’? In the same context we make a contribution to society simply through our presence and participation, in that we consume and produce goods and provide and receive services, thus we create jobs for ourselves and others. Not to forget all the lessons we subconsciously teach by example, on how to, or how not to live. We make a contribution to society every time we stand up to unfair governance, oppression, injustice or tyranny, in fact every time we question the establishment and hold them accountable. In the cartoon ‘The Wizard of Id’, long term prisoner ‘the spook’, on being paroled, was asked by the king if he was now ready to make a useful contribution to society, he replied: “I already have, I spat on your portrait on the way in.” Of course, in typical medieval fashion this landed him back in the dungeon. Quality art and literature are a contribution to the mental and spiritual wellbeing of humanity. It all works well, as long as a balance is maintained i.e. not an excessive number of people are making only a spiritual contribution while the rest of society does all the ‘hard yakka’ for them. Every time I drink Whisky I make a ‘spiritually financial’ contribution to the liquor industry as well as a generous contribution to the nation in form of a substantial alcohol tax!

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