On one of my usual journeys of knowledge and understanding, I came across an essay written by Molefi Kete Asante, during his time at Temple University, entitled Matt and Human Communication: Supporting Identity, Culture, Identity and History Without Global Domination.
The essay speaks, in elaboration, of the value of communication within the ancient African spiritual context. Within the essay is an excerpt from Sebayet, the Wisdom by Ptahhotep that describes the act of seeking common good.
Sebayet by Ptahhotep(EXCERPT)
If good deeds are done by one who leads
He will be well established forever.
And all his wisdom will endure for eternity.
The wise nourishes his Ba [soul] with that which endures So that it is well with him on earth.
The wise is known by his wisdom,
A noble person by his good deeds.
His heart is in harmony with his tongue.
His lips are accurate when he speaks.
He sees rightly through his eyes.
His ears are pleased to hear what is useful for his children. He does Maat and is free from falsehood.
Now the fool who does not listen
He can do nothing at all
He sees knowledge in ignorance,
And that which is beneficial as that which is harmful. He does everything which is hateful
So that people blame him every day.
He lives on that by which one dies.
His food is the distortion of speech.
His character is this respect is known to the officials As a living death each day.
People overlook his deeds because of his many problems.
Courtesy of http://www.uri.edu/iaics/content/2011v20n1/04MolefiKeteAsante.pdf