Volunteer Spotlight: Juan Pablo Lazo Ureta

Each month, we share the stories of World BEYOND War volunteers around the world. Want to volunteer with World BEYOND War? Email greta@worldbeyondwar.org.

Juan Pablo Lazo Ureta smiles, sitting in front of a wooden wall with a guitar and 2 drums hanging from it.


Laguna Verde, Valparaíso, Chile

How did you get involved with anti-war activism and World BEYOND War (WBW)?

I got involved from the moment the Twin Towers fell on 9/11. The constant repetition of the episode on TV made me think that this was a turning point that the military industry would know how to take advantage of to sell weapons and foment wars. Already the world seemed to me to be in a great crisis. Predicting even darker times ahead revealed to me my vocation for peace. My desire to understand, to study, and to join those who have a vision of a good world, of a harmonious society.

What kinds of WBW activities do you work on?

I have a total commitment to “world beyond war” which is a global organization that I manage to connect with our local efforts, as the Chapter Coordinator for the WBW Bioregión Aconcagua chapter.

The foundation where I work is called “La ruta de la Paz” and it supports a center called Rukayün, located in Valparaiso, where we have just planted a peace pole with our community. Our purpose is to weave alliances, to be a school of intentional and sustainable living, to promote healing, and to put special emphasis on conscious communication, which is why we utilize techniques such as nonviolent communication.

We are committed to the strategy of promoting a regenerative, sustainable, and peaceful way of life. For those who read this article, I ask that if you can imagine any form of mutual support that aligns with our purpose of peace, please do not hesitate to contact us.

We carry out daily activities in our headquarters and we have the desire to improve our facilities in the short term. With some regularity we also carry out actions in the public space. The La ruta de la Paz foundation is part of the pacifist web platform www.somospaz.org which has been around for many years and currently has online translation into multiple languages. We also have close relations with the Caravan for Peace and the Restoration of Mother Earth, an intentional community of 60 nomads.

Finally, I want to mention 3 other networks that we are part of: CASA LATINA, which is a member of the global network of eco villages; the Transition movement that certifies us as teachers; and the wisdom dialogues promoted by AtmanWay, which takes a holistic “head-heart-hands” approach to transform self, organization, and society.

What’s your top recommendation for someone who wants to get involved with anti-war activism and WBW?

My recommendation is that we find moments of retreat from time to time to find our own peace and therefore affirm in our daily lives what it is that we are defending, caring for, and protecting. It is a state of being to which we can all aspire and which can be perceived through meditation and breathwork.

What keeps you inspired to advocate for change?

What a great question! I am inspired by the faith that it is possible and that this is the generation called upon to achieve it according to what I hear from the stories of indigenous peoples.

How has the coronavirus pandemic impacted your activism?

It opened me to the virtual world, to adopt web tools that I didn’t know of before, such as Zoom, Streamyard, and Canva, and to improve in video production with iMovie.

In my country (Chile) it is not only the pandemic that has altered normality but also a crisis caused by a social uprising that has triggered a process to revise Chile’s constitution. In this, I have been raising my voice to express that there is a need for disarmament, peace, and global cooperation in the constitution.

Posted April 26, 2023.

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