When I was at a festival at Mishref’s house of arts that celebrated different countries’ cultures, I was pondering to myself – what are the values that all these societies appreciate the most? Is it love? Or honor? Or is it something else? In Kuwait, we seek more and more luxuries from material life, causing us to have less and less tight family bonds.

When I reached the Mexican booth, I was offered a free cup of Mexican hot chocolate. When I took my first sip, I remembered the articles I published in Al-Jarida about the seductive relationship between patience and pleasure in this life, and how this philosophy is perfectly personified by chocolate! To illustrate, the chemical structure of any piece of solid chocolate is made up of rows of crystals that are stacked together. This finding allowed scientists, after years of research, to find the answer to the question: How is it that the longer a morsel of chocolate stays in our mouth, the more layers of “coco goodness” we taste?

Not only that, but scientists did in fact discover that the nutritional benefits derived from chocolate protect us from heart attacks. These microscopic rows of crystals cannot be fully absorbed by our bodies, and can only be unlocked by the secretion of saliva. This means that we have to be patient during the time we are chewing on a bar of chocolate in order to receive more of its nutritional value. But what does all of this have to say to a meditative mind?

Countless quotes and sayings from different religions and psychologists encourage everyone to implement the age-old art of respect for one another – the respect that demands us to be patient, listening to everyone’s ideas and feelings. This is greatly important to us in Kuwait, given this time of distress we are suffering from due to the less popular ministers who were chosen to lead us in the course of 2018. We people do not give them a chance to prove themselves, and we also cannot seem to manage quite effectively the insane rates of divorce.

Respect is the value that connects all of humanity, because whether it is in business or romance, the more layers we unlock of a person’s identity in our process of empathizing with him or her, the more tasteful our collective social life becomes. So let us allow others a chance to melt.

By Jeri Al-Jeri