This paper proposes a unified energy-based modeling and energy-aware control paradigm for robotic systems. The paradigm is inspired by the layered and distributed control system of organisms, and uses the fundamental notion of energy in a system and the energy exchange between systems during interaction. A universal framework that models actuated and interacting robotic systems is proposed, which is used as the basis for energy-based and energy-limited control. The proposed controllers act on certain energy budgets to accomplish a desired task, and decrease performance if a budget has been depleted. These budgets ensure that a maximum amount of energy can be used, to ensure passivity and stability of the system. Experiments show the validity of the approach.