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The Ichthys connection.


800px-Kircher oedipus aegyptiacus 28 derceto

Derceto, from Athanasius Kircher's Oedipus Aegyptiacus, 1652.

Ichthys or ichthus (ˈɪkθəs[1]), from the Greek ikhthýs (ἰχθύς 1 st cent. AD Koine Greek ikʰˈtʰys, "fish") was the son of the Syrian fish-goddess, Atargatis.[2] The Atargatis was the chief goddess of northern Syria in Classical antiquity.[3][4] She is identified with the mother goddess Asherah (Akkadian Ašratu(m)) who was sometimes attributed to being a wife of Yahweh in ancient Semitic religion. This motif goes even further back to Sumeria, as she was the queen consort of the Sumerian god Anu, the oldest recorded and known deities of their respective pantheons.[5]

Biblical mythos[]

800px-Matsya Raja Ravi Varma Press

Matsya, the Hindu fish avatara of Vishnu holding the Vedas (depicted as the four races of man) during the Great Hindu Flood (This “Great” flood spanned three worlds).

The Biblical mythos of the ichthys can be traced back to the Hindu deity Vishnu, the Preserver, whose first avatara or incarnation on Earth was the fish being Matsya. The mythos of Matsya (Sanskrit word for fish) is given according to the Shataoatha-Brahmana. It gives the story of the Matsya flood myth which has strong parallels to the Hebrew Bible story of Noah and the Flood in the book of Genesis. Vishnu incarnates as Matsya to save Manu (Sanskrit for man) from the great deluge. Manu had rescued a small fish and protected it as it grew to such a vast size that only the ocean could hold it. When the fish revealed itself as the Lord Vishnu, Manu was warned of the coming flood and was told to build a boat in order to hold himself and the seeds of all living beings. Matsya sustained the boat safely over the waters until the flood finally receded. Later, Matsya slew the demon Hayagriva to retrieve the Veda ("sacred knowledge") that had been stolen from Brahma (God in his aspect as Creator).[6]

Age of Pisces[]


Symbol of the ichthys

The ichthys sysmbol is used in astrology. The Age of Pisces is considered the era of Christianity. In the precession of the equinoxes, the astrological sign that the sun appears in, at the vernal equinox, moves backwards through the zodiac over time. This determines the astrological ages, each approximately 2100 years in length, and this is behind the meaning of the New Age concept of entering the "Age of Aquarius" (i.e. we are entering that period in which the sun appears in Aquarius at the vernal equinox). The dawn of Christianity happened at the start of the current astrological age, and it has exerted a profound influence throughout this age, which is soon to pass away. The era of Christianity has been the Age of Pisces, the sign of the fish.[6]



  1. "ichthus". Oxford English Dictionary (third ed.). 2007. 
  2. Jung, Carl Gustav. Symbols of Transformation
  3. "Atargatis (Syrian deity) - Encyclopædia Britannica". 2013-08-13. Retrieved 2014-08-11. 
  4. M. Rostovtseff, "Hadad and Atargatis at Palmyra", American Journal of Archaeology 37 (January 1933), pp 58-63, examining Palmyrene stamped tesserae.
  5. Leeming, David (2005). The Oxford Companion to World Mythology, p.32.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Byzant, The Ichthys