98: HEATRBREAK HOSTAL - BOB WEIGHTON RIP
FRI 05 JUNE 11:45 - Mooning Monthly pays tribute to the world's oldest man and fellow Mooner, Bob, as he moves on to pastures eternal under a Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse ....well loved, sorely missed.....
Dear Mooners across our beloved, beautiful planet We have some heartbreaking news to impart. Our esteemed friend, elder and fellow Mooner, Bob Weighton, passed peacefully onto his next great adventure in the early hours of Thursday morning 27th May, in his own home with his hand held. His body was anointed and lovingly watched over in candlelit vigil until morning as he detached fully from his long serving physical vehicle to be warmly welcomed back into the realm from which he came, 112 years ago. When he died he was the oldest man on the planet, or as we here at Mooning HQ preferred, the oldest man in the known universe. We loved him dearly and miss him severely. A more comprehensive tribute to Bob can be read at the foot of this message headed "Bob Watch - The Epilogue". And so to this Friday's full moon and, as if in sympathy with our own emotional distress, it's a total Heartbreaker. It's a lunar eclipse (Sun directly opposite Moon) only visible in Africa, Asia, Australia, and the Middle East but the influence of it's heartache will be common to the whole planet. It's the first in this summer's eclipse season and on the astrological chart it sits in Sagittarius. It has some pretty potent aspects which override the Sagittarius influence in spades (square Mars, opposite Venus in retrograde, Mars square Venus - Oh my Lord!) none of which bodes well for any relationship that's already under stress. Generally speaking our heightened full moon emotions will be on a war footing and it's not going to take much provocation for things to kick off, big style. Internationally, the evidence suggests that the social tinder has already been lit in the USA (George Floyd RIP #blacklivesmatter ). How many more people of colour will be tragically lost to the willfully ignorant, global demon of white male privilege? Across the Pacific ocean, Chinese authorities have ordered increasingly violent attacks on peaceful pro democracy demonstrators in Hong Kong and the situation doesn't look like it's going to improve before more blood is shed. Heartbreaking is right. In our personal lives we walk a similar tightrope between war and peace; love and hate. It's going to be a challenge for those of us in stable happy relationships but in those where there is already tension the prognosis is not good. Mars and Venus both have a strong sexual appetite. Mars traditionally expresses this through very male conquest. The goddess Venus, normally very loving, romantic and sensual, is currently in retrograde (appearing to travel in reverse across the heavens) meaning she'll be giving up the good girl in pearls image and looking to get naaastieee in bling. The two planets have squared up and they're both spoiling for a fight under the eclipse. It's an archetypal warring face off, and people are going to get hurt. If our sex life isn't quite what we think it should be, this weekend could prove to be something of a powder keg between our legs. Sexual misconduct, inappropriate affairs, sexual deviancy might reveal their low life attributes in serious sex pestering; manipulative sex predation, possibly drug or alcohol enabled; blackmail; downright dishonesty or selfish, emotive hissy fits intended to coerce. It would be wrong to suggest it's all one gender sided but with Mars on the prowl in the shadows of this Lunar Eclipse, women should be overly cautious around men with an amorous agenda or more than hearts might to be broken....glasses, crockery and items of personal value we'd wager. Disenchanted partners of any gender identity will be swinging out in anger and frustration. Crimes of passion may hit this year's peak. Duck and weave Mooners. Remain a moving target. One might think that domestic family relationships (always a minefield) would get away comparatively lightly but we're sorry to relay that this weekend presents huge potential issues for vulnerable women and children from latent abusers. More than heartbreaking. Let's stay vigilant and help where we can. (Rise in child abuse during lockdown - article) As the lockdown is eased across the planet, we are having to reacquaint ourselves with the realities of our working relationships - if we are fortunate enough to still have jobs to return to. This lunar eclipse will voice itself in the tensions between bosses and employees, between employer expectations and working conditions for those on the payroll. How many people have taken a long hard look at their lives during lockdown and wondered what the hell they were previously working so hard for? To whose benefit were those long stressful working days and interminable commutes? After the initial shock, many (not all of course) have enjoyed balancing working from home and quality family time in domestic lockdown safety. Many currently furloughed will be reticent to return to the working schedules they once set themselves and this will naturally be at odds with the aspirations/requirements of all but the most enlightened employers. The potential for stress, conflict and life threatening illness looms large once again we're afraid. And the antidote to all this bubbling frustration and conflict? We would suggest any measure of heightened self awareness to match our heightened emotional state wouldn't go amiss over the next fortnight. It's the practice we here at Mooning HQ preach of course. Mindful observation of our impulsive, habitual behaviour, particularly under new and full moons, allows us greater choice of reaction to circumstances in thought, word and deed. We strive to create a pause between experience and our conditioned, habitual responses to it (reactions we have erroneously come to believe determine who we are). In that conscious pause, however brief, lies the possibility of flexibility, acceptance and change. In that pause lies the loving possibility of reacting in thought, word and deed for the benefit of All and not just our own, often negative, ego led agendas, It's quite literally the practice of developing an open, non judgemental mind and an effective way of healing broken hearts.
Bob Weighton was a master of the art and consequently brought love, joy and a sense of wonder to all he met - a natural reflection of the love, joy and wonder Bob experienced in meeting anyone and everyone, anywhere. Human experience was a better place for his considerate thoughts, words and actions - they were the essence of his loving presence. Bob eulogy below........
This message was delivered to you germ free from beyond two metres. It will not cough or run a temperature but Mooning might well be contagious. Please share with friends of similar sensibilities without fear of reproach from any deceitful balding government advisers in the Barnard Castle area. Keep it sanitized Mooners With love 'til next time....
BOB WATCH - The Epilogue
A tribute to ROBERT GRANT PITTS WEIGHTON written by grandson and fellow Mooner, Mark Weighton
On the day Bob's dear wife Agnes died in 1995, after many years of physical health challenges, he strode in his customary manner across the nursing home car park towards my mother Sue, who had driven from home to pick him up. In defiance of any notion that death is an end to life, he hugged her and pronounced with loving relief, "She's gone to Glory!"
Bob too has now gone to glory, something for which he has long been prepared. In recent weeks he was diagnosed with a terminal illness, a pancoast tumour in his left lung, which was briefly treated with radiotherapy to cause him minimum pain in his remaining days.
He passed peacefully onto his next great adventure in the early hours of Thursday morning, in his own home with his hand held. His body was anointed and lovingly watched over in candlelit vigil until morning as he detached fully from his long serving physical vehicle to be warmly welcomed back into the realm from which he came, 112 years ago. Earlier that day he had been the oldest living man on Earth.
Although it was uncomfortable news, after receiving the prognosis of his condition from an oncologist at Basingstoke Hospital, Bob paused and calmly relayed, "I am ready to die tomorrow. I've done most of the things I set out to do in life and a lot that I didn't. In the meantime let's see what's possible...... and what's impossible we'll just have to accept."
The day after my father Peter, Bob's youngest son, died suddenly in 2012, I was moved to ask how he coped with the pain in seeing his parents, his siblings, his wife, friends and now his own child die during his lifetime. Through soft tears he responded, "If there's one lesson I've learnt over the years, it's that there are some things in life you just can't change and it behoves us well to accept them with grace."
He was the living embodiment of loving grace on Earth. Some might suggest that's the very definition of sainthood but Bob never had a great deal of time for titles, particularly regarding people.... or God for that matter. He told me he went out of his way to avoid using the G-word in his writings and lectures as he felt it was too heavily laden with misconceptions. Nonetheless, his faith was rock solid, founded on the teachings of Jesus, someone he championed as an ordinary man with an experiential insight into the greater reality of Love - a living phenomenon that most of us struggle to connect with.
He found his greatest connection to that Truth in meeting people, of all ages, cultures and creeds. When asked, as he often was, for the secret of his longevity he once replied, "Curiosity I suppose. When I wake I never know who will walk through my front door that day and the prospect keeps me going." For a number of years I never heard him give the same answer twice to that same tiresome longevity question. He gave every enquiry, every conversation his full, attentive consideration. There wasn't a rhetorical bone in his body.
As the frequency of "What's your secret Bob?" enquiries increased, progressively from mainstream media, he began to keep his answers short and sweet. "There is no secret," he would say, "I just haven't died yet." Or, "Well... it's a good idea to avoid dying." When asked about death directly he suggested, "You either choose to believe that all will be well, or you choose to think that’s the end of me. Perhaps there are some questions of life and death which our minds can’t grasp at all, and it’s whether we face that immense change, whatever it might be, with confidence or with dread. That is the big question."
Bob would resist any descriptive labels but he was a compassionate, humanitarian internationalist who traveled the world long before it became the preserve of cheap flights and wealthy holiday makers. He learnt to speak fluent Japanese, Cantonese and Taiwanese in a typically humble attempt to connect respectfully with people of those nations whilst living there before the Second World War. In his late seventies, he went back to school - quite literally attending lessons with students at Alton College in his home town - to learn German at GCSE and A-level and in which he eventually attained a translator's diploma at Farnborough College.
As an Internationalist, he perhaps saw the suffering of others across the planet as his own. He lived to love his neighbour, however far afield, and did what he could to alleviate the pain induced by poverty, warfare, discrimination and ecological degradation in the ways available to him. Amongst a long list of charities to which he contributed, he made regular donations to Womankind; Feed the Minds; Chawton House; Shelter; WaterAid; Practical Action (International Intermediate Technology Group); Red Cross, The Centre for Alternative Technology and Friends of the Earth. Take your pick and make a donation in memory of the great man. He'd love that.
He recognised the developing environmental disaster long before others took it seriously, consistently encouraging readers of his 'Eco-Corner' column in Alton parish magazine to make themselves more aware of the consequences of their consumer behaviour. "Don't buy new if you can recycle, reuse or make one yourself," went his regular mantra.
As a trained engineer and lecturer in engineering he was a keen advocate of green technologies and was, even to his final days, mystified by Britain's inability to generate electricity using the great natural asset of the tide around its coastline. Let's hope he can lobby successfully for that development from his current desk....although the irresistible case seems finally to have been heard. He will be delighted. https://www.renewableuk.com/page/WaveTidalEnergy
His final words were reserved for his beloved friend and long time classical concert sharing partner, Rosie, who made a serendipitous phone call just hours before his last breath. He had struggled to speak all day and as she told him she loved him he strained to intelligibly return her love. "I love you too," he croaked. Last words committed to the power of unconditional Love: the mystery from whence he came and where he now fully resides. Love thy neighbour as thyself.....and he did. ROBERT GRANT PITTS WEIGHTON 29:03:1908 - 28:05:2020 Son of Arthur and Eliza; beloved of Agnes; father of David, Peter and Dorothy; Mooner.
FULL MOON MARKS
EACH MONTH WE PUBLISH A LUNAR INSPIRED DRAWING BY MARK WEIGHTON
LUNAR ECLIPSE IN SAGITTARIUS 2020 in memory of Bob Weighton
18 x 18cm charcoal on paper
The sixth of 13 Full Moon inspired drawings for 2020 by artist Mark Weighton