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Philippines and Taiwan



Philippines and Taiwan
[Map from the Perry Castenada Library,
Courtesy The General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin]

The islands of the Philippines and Taiwan are located in south-east Asia off the coast of China. Taiwan is a democratic country, but China claims it as its 23rd province. It's not a Christian nation. Taiwan's chief religions are Buddhism, Shamanism, and Taoism. On the other hand, the Philippines is the only Christian nation in Asia; 90 percent of the people claim to be Catholic.

Now let's take a look at what these 2 nations represent. Each is rotated 90 degrees to the left, and we'll look at the Philippines first:


Philippine fish
[Map from the Perry Castenada Library,
Courtesy The General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin]

The Philippines is a fish!


Fish


Now here's Taiwan:


Taiwan fish
[Map from the Perry Castenada Library,
Courtesy The General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin]

And Taiwan is a fish!


Flounder


Specifically, Taiwan is a flatfish like a flounder, halibut, or sole, while the Philippines is more like something from the perch family (if anyone can narrow it down, please let me know). Here are both nations end to end:


Taiwan and the Philippines
[Map from the Perry Castenada Library,
Courtesy The General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin]

Taiwan is on the left, and the Philippines on the right. The Taiwan fish shows the left face, and the Philippines shows the right face. This made me think of the fishing in John 21:

1 After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise showed He Himself. 2 There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of His disciples. 3 Simon Peter saith unto them, "I go a fishing." They say unto him, "We also go with thee." They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.

4 But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. 5 Then Jesus saith unto them, "Children, have ye any meat?" They answered Him, "No." 6 And He said unto them, "Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye shall find." They cast therefore, and now they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes.

Naturally there are not more fish on one side of a boat than the other. I believe Jesus meant that fishers of men should fish for people who are on the right or right-wing. The left or left-wing is the side of liberalism, socialism, and communism. If you choose the left you will flounder :-) Geographically speaking, Taiwan is swimming toward China and communism, the Philippines are swimming away from it. I also think Taiwan is shown swimming toward the left because of their many false religions. I'm sure our Father knew how they would turn out long before He made these islands.

There are more differences between Taiwan and the Philippines than left and right. Taiwan is a single island and a single fish. The Philippines is 7,107 islands, and also represents a multitude or school of fishes that move as one body.


School of fishes


A school of fish moves as one big fish.

Taiwan is rather non-descript. You can tell it's a flatfish, and right where its eye would be is the capital of Taipei, but that's about it.

Here is some information about flatfish, originally from Encarta:

"Flatfish, fishes which, as adults, lie on one side of the body with both eyes on the opposite, upward-facing side of the head. The body is greatly flattened from side to side so that these fishes conform to the flat surfaces on which they live. Most species are marine, and they are found in all parts of the world. Flatfishes usually swim on or near the bottom, partly covered, and feed on small marine animals. The young are bilaterally symmetrical and swim as most other fishes do. As development progresses, one eye, usually the left, migrates over the top of the head or, in some species, directly through the skull, and becomes situated over the other eye. A bony ridge extending from the tail to the snout develops to support the dorsal fin. The skull becomes greatly compressed, and the face is permanently distorted to face upward. The eyes are able to move independently, so the fishes can see in all directions as they lie on the bottom.

Flatfishes have a marked degree of protective coloration. Those living on sandy bottoms have light-brown upper sides, and those living on pebbled bottoms have speckled upper sides. The hidden side is usually light in color. Many species are able to change coloration in chameleonlike fashion, to increase their resemblance to their surroundings."


Flounders floundering


So flatfishes are bottom-dwellers, masters of camouflage, and they start out life normally like other fish, but then they go through a metamorphosis where one eye migrates to the other side of the head, so both eyes end up on top.


Flounder


On the contrary, the Philippines is very elaborate: the 2 largest islands form the head and tail, and it has obvious fins.


Philippine fish


Also the eye and nose are emphasized (if you think the long nose is odd, there are fish with much bigger noses than this). It's difficult to see, but the eye is actually an island (or eye-land).


Philippines



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