yoga teacherBy Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500

Brahmacharya: The fourth Yama brings to mind words like chastity, celibacy, or abstinence.  Consider this Yama to refer to restraining sensual or sexual pleasure; but also consider moderation as a key element.  Moderation is a key to quality life.  To deprive the senses, tends to create frustrated people.  How many of us have seen someone enter into a diet, and make everyone else miserable?  The person who lives on a “lettuce diet,” out of necessity, has a right to be frustrated.

However, if it is a diet of choice, then this person could apply a little spice, other vegetables, whole grains, herbs, legumes, and any anything else it takes to live a quality life.  If the mind demands chocolate, we cannot be unpleasant to everyone else, because we chose to go without it.  People do the same with coffee.  They suddenly quit, and take it out on their friends, family, and co-workers.  If they are expecting an award or prize, they will get it.  The destruction of their reputation will be known far and wide.

This is not an excuse to over indulge in everything, either.  Even good foods can be consumed to excess.  For example: We often hear that olive oil is good for you because of the Omega 6 value.  This is true, but if we use it to excess, you will notice our waist lines expand rapidly.  Salmon is good for Omega 3 value, but have you seen how quickly bears can gain size while eating a salmon rich diet?  Too much of anything is not good.  It all comes back to moderation in every avenue of life.

Consider these famous words by Eubie Blake on his 100th birthday, “If I’d known I’d Live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.”


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