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Purchasing can be a very powerful event in life. If you don't believe this, think about people you know who gain self-esteem or a sense of accomplishment from shopping. Participating in commerce is a validation of personal autonomy in many ways. It can also be destructive. In a consumer-driven culture, many people find themselves drowning in debt. This debt can be an all-consuming drain not only on financial, but on emotional resources as well.

Consequently, dreams of buying may be a psychological warning as easily as an affirmation.

To interpret a dream of buying requires the dreamer to think about what was bought, why it was bought, and how it was bought-cash, credit, check, or good looks. Dreaming of buying on credit may reflect a desire to acquire or control, or it may reflect a warning. In exchanges of this nature, the object bought should be closely considered. Buying staple items on credit may reflect a deep-felt insecurity about one's circumstances and future. Buying luxury items could be an attempt to compensate for inadequate self-esteem or wanting to strengthen one's public stature. Trying to buy items (or food) without money may reflect a sense of incompetence concerning financial or other matters. It may also reflect a sense of unmet needs in emotional transactions.

What and who are you buying for, and from whom? If the merchant is known (e.g., spouse, business associate), the goods are essential, and the end user is yourself, you may feel that you are not fulfilling your end of the bargain in a relationship.

Being able to buy items without money is a powerful projection of control, public acceptance, or a sense that you are owed much favor. In these cases, the items purchased and the identity of the seller will provide major clues to the meaning of the dream.

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