(Do you think that these "Fish symbols" are connected to each other?)
Christians & Ancient Spirituality of Sri Lanka
Tertullian thinks of this sign in writing about Baptism “We Christians are little fishes, and like our Ichthus (Ιχθύς) are born in the water. The way to kill little fishes is to take them out of the water” ~ 195 AD
The pre-Christian rock inscriptions of the Kataragama Kshatriyas always bear the Fish symbol. These Kataragama Kshatriya kings describe themselves in their pre-Christian inscriptions as " Gamini puta dasa kathikana Kedhate ..." (Bovattegala inscription Inscr of Ceylon part I p 41 # 549) Kedhate was the early form of Kevatta meaning 'mastery over water'. Over a thousand years later, when Kevatta also meant a fisherman, chroniclers have used prefixes to distinguish Dunu-kevatta vamsa warrior royalty (Ariyapala p 113) from Vedi-kevatta tribal fishermen.
The word Dheega meaning water is frequently used by these kings in their personal names such as Dheegha-Gamini, Dheega-Jantu, etc., and in place names such as Dhiga-Vapi, Dhiga-Mandala, etc. The word Kataragama too in its original form was Kachara (Ka +Chara) where Ka meant water and Chara meant 'traveling on', meaning sailing and naval power. (Yatala Vehera p 18)
- Recent excavations in the south have uncovered many types of coins from the same period with the Fish symbol. The Fish symbol and the Ship symbol are recurrent symbols in Karava Heraldry (Ref ~ http://karava.org/karava_timeline)
Christian WorshipEarly developments – Justin Martyr and others
1. One of the best sources of information is Justin who about 155 AD wrote to explain Christian ways to others.
2. The following are the important facts about his writings and the writings of some others.
3. Baptism – “We tell those who accept Christian teaching, to promise to live the Christian life, to pray and fast for forgiveness, we ourselves praying and fasting with them. We then bring them where there is water, and they are born again, just as all we Christians have been. Washed in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.....as we learn to form the Apostles...
4. We then bring them to the place where other Christians are assembled. We all pray, for ourselves, for the newly baptized, and for others everywhere, asking God that, as we have learned the truth, we may now show by our deeds that we are good citizens and keepers of the commandments, and so we may be saved with eternal salvation. After the prayers, we greet each other as brothers.
5. After this account Justin mentioned that the Eucharist was offered to the newly baptized. He goes on to explain that the Eucharist was offered only to the believers who are baptized.
6. Tertullian, a Roman lawyer born in Carthage in North Africa became a Christian in 195 AD. Later he became a Christian teacher, Presbyter, and writer. In his writings, he has mentioned the Greek word Ichthus (Ιχθύς) meaning “fish”. This was a widely used sign among Christians because its 5 letters could be made to represent 5 words. Most probably this would have been the 1st creed of the early Christians.
7. This sign was used in ancient Christian rings, seals, ornaments & gravestones.
8. Tertullian thinks of this sign in writing about Baptism “We Christians are little fishes, and like our Ichthus (Ιχθύς) are born in the water. The way to kill little fishes is to take them out of the water”.