I have been the resident fish keeper for the church during this series of messages about Creating Spaces. We used the idea of a fish tank because we are looking at our "tank" being full. However, in the course of my duties, I have learned more than I expected about how similar we are to the community in the tank. Here are a few of my observations. You may feel free to link them to human experience, should you see any parallels.
I chose feeder fish because, frankly, they are cheap. They are disposable without too much guilt. Still, expect to be interrogated a little if you go back too many times to replace the dead ones. The fish store people take their jobs much more seriously than most of us do.
I have learned that goldfish have no stomachs. They eat and eat and eat but can never feel full. The food goes right through them and is passed as ammonia. Basically, they eat food constantly and their body expels poison.
Of course the problem is that they don't have the facilities, like a sewage system, to protect their ecosystem. Too many fish or too little water or lack of filtration and all you really have is a tank of poison.
Environment is important to fish, just like us.
The fish need a supply of fresh water with water changes of the tank. It is a little tricky tho. Take too much water out of the tank and put fresh water in, the environment will be shocked. And fish will die. Remember though, without changing the water, the fish will die in a tank of poison.
Some fish need places to hide like rocks and tunnels. Others need plants. All fish need space. While this can be a territorial issue, it also goes back to having enough space to tolerate the amount of waste products created.
Goldfish will eat one another. I am hoping they do this AFTER the fish is already dead, but they definitely are opportunists when it comes to eating. Insatiable really, as said earlier.
Now, really, I have drawn parallels in this experience of tanks, but I will let you find your own. I have fish to care for.