Moderation is the underlying principle behind stability and harmony. It is the core cause of the balanced states in Nature. It is the precept that establishes equilibrium of forces - both static and dynamic. It is the veritable key to the treasure of peace.
Moderation has been prescribed as an important element of the proper way of living by humans in scriptures. Shri Krishna, the legendary hero of the epic Mahabharat, called immoderation or excesses inimical to Nature and to the master of Nature, God. Moderation has been described as essential for success in all human endeavours.
The fundamental reason behind the great emphasis on moderation in human philosophy and discourse is that a human being has limited faculties. His physical strength and stamina are limited. His mental and intellectual capabilities are also grossly limited. Accordingly, his ability to comprehend eternal knowledge and apply it without outside help to his daily life is also inherently limited.
Hence, he needs to observe moderation - in eating, drinking, sleep, physical exercise, mental work, physical work, or speech so that he does not transgress the limits set by Nature on him. For, if he crossed these limits, he would set in a process of disturbing forces which are inimical to his health and well being and overall disruptive of peace and harmony.
'Excess of everything is bad', goes an English proverb and it provides an excellent one-liner exposition on the importance of moderation. Excessive eating or drinking or sleeping or indulgence in sexual activity invites health problems for a person.
Excessive obsession with money makes a person greedy and he tends to use unethical means for generating wealth. Excessive work is perhaps as bad as excessive recreation. All work and no play make Jack a dull boy. All play and no work also makes Jack dreary.
In society, we all are bound by rules and regulations which are meant for promotion of the welfare of all. Hence, we are not supposed to transgress the limits of action and behaviour set upon us. Such transgression would be deemed as violation of rules and regulations, prescribed or traditionally observed. This violation will attract negative sanctions from the society, formal or informal.
There are well-defined rules of moral, ethical and decent behaviour and in our actions we are not expected to cross the limits of decency, dignity and moral rectitude. This confinement of human action within the limits set by the society and civic bodies is moderation in practice.
Moderation is demonstrated by Nature in its everyday operations. The ever benevolent Nature takes tender care of all living beings.
The warmth and light of the sun, the life sustaining wind and the bountifully flowing rivers provide their elements to human and other living beings with controlled intensity. If the sun began to shine brighter and hotter and the wind turned into a blizzard and the rivers began to swell and overflow, the entire life would begin to be devastated.
Immoderately hot sun will scorch humans out existence; high winds and floods will produce equally disastrous effects. Hence the basic elements of Nature and the celestial bodies work in controlled limits set forth by the supreme creator and sustainer.
He has infused discipline and moderation in the flow of his primordial elements. Man needs to understand that to remain in harmony with Nature, he too needs to become like Nature - moderate and disciplined.
Hence, moderation is synonymous with discipline. Discipline is the watchword of progressive action in the world of business and professions. Discipline in speech is the prime factor in forging as well as maintaining harmonious human relationships.
Thus human health, happiness and success depend really on how well humans observe moderation - operating within the boundaries set by defined norms, prescribed rules and historically validated maxims.
Peace is established when forces of Nature remain balanced. Human beings too, in order to maintain peaceful coexistence, need to keep balance in their actions vis-à-vis Nature, environment and other living beings.
Preservation of the purity of the physical environment, promoting welfare of all living beings and assiduously following the laws of Mother Nature are essential for maintaining order, stability and peace.
We need to understand and appreciate that moderation in action is a part and parcel of our proper plan of living in sync with Nature, a plan which will continuously facilitate our all-round progress in the realm of the Almighty.
Hence, moderation is central to the plan for peace, progress and prosperity and, therefore, forms one of the key philosophical elements in human liberation.