Tanzanian sunset by Laurel Steele

Moderation is not a word that most people like to hear or adhere to. Especially in the West, I am surrounded and some times find myself consuming way more than my share of food, space, and energy.

Of course science explains that Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, yet how we use our energy is key to how we feel.

Patajali’s fourth yama found in Yoga Sutra 2.38 ब्रःमचार्यप्रतिस्थायं वीर्यलाभः brahmacarya-pratisthayam virya-labhah is translated, “Vitality appears in one who is firmly set in moderation,” according to Bernard Bouanchaud. Many times this sutra is translated as meaning abstinence from sex or not using your sexuality inappropriately, yet I agree with many yogis who have translated this on a grander scale to include how we use our energy in all endeavors–not just sex.

How in our hyped-up, fast-paced world do we live in moderation?

  • eat until we are 3/4 full
  • limit our use of electronics
  • honor our commitments in sexual as well as non-sexual relationships
  • think before we speak
  • exercise moderately (we tend to over or under do this one)
  • use products we NEED not just want
  • reuse, renew, recycle
  • pay attention to ALL substances we put into our bodies including the amounts

There are many ways to live moderately. They are good for our health, our relationships and the health of our planet. How do you live moderately? If you don’t, what changes can you make in this moment?