There is a saying in the Talmud that a person who eats fatty meat may need to hide in the attic, but one who eats vegetables may do so in an open field.
Many people live beyond their means and sink into deep debt. Whether they must then “hide in the attic” to escape their creditors or whether they mortgage themselves so heavily that the debt burden that crushes them is immaterial. The Talmudic lesson is clear, live within your means and you can be free, live beyond your means and you become a fugitive.
However, on the other hand, Judaism believes that having desires are an important part of living and without them a person would be depressed with no appetite to live, as we recite in our daily prayers, “You open your hand and satisfy all living things with desire”. In other words, we are blessed with the will and desires to motivate us to engage the world and to create a better life for ourselves.
So then how does a person balance one’s appetite for living without making himself a fugitive? In the words of our sages, “who is the wise person? The one who sees the future.” The one who foresees the long-term consequences to the pursuit of the desires of the moment is truly wise.