I have read an interesting interpretation of the loaves and fishes parable…

Some say that it was a miracle of multiplication, that the bread and fish were multiplied many times over so that there was enough food to feed the crowd. But I have also heard another interpretation. Many of the crowd were women and children (who were not counted in those days, so we know little about them). And if you are a mother you know that you don’t embark on a journey that will take the entire day without packing a little something for your children in case they get hungry. It is an instinctive act of nurturing.

But, there is also a side to human nature which is not so generous. And that is, for example, when you have a chocolate bar in your purse and you’re sitting around a table at a conference with a bunch of other people. You think to yourself, I would really love to have that chocolate bar right now. But you know that if you get it out, etiquette would require that you share it with all the people around you and instead of getting the whole bar you might only receive a tiny portion. So it is possible that, among that crowd of people at the lake that day, many of them had food in their pockets. And when the man led by example — sharing freely of what he had even though it was only a little bit — perhaps each person in the crowd opened up their hearts and their pockets and began to share with their neighbors. And there was such a bounty there that not only did all go away satisfied, but there was more left over.

from http://www.waldorfcurriculum.com/

Now, granted, this isn’t a religious site that provides us with this alternative explaination…but I find this interpretation to be far more interesting and profound than the ‘miracle’ could ever be.

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