Costa Rica


Set One:  Peace Institutions and People

Costa Rica is between Nicaragua and Panama in Central America

Peace celebrations in San Carlos for World Peace Day: September 21st, 2012. Stephanie and Orianna participate for Fundacion Ceppa (the Center for the Study of Peace), Lic. Celina Garcia, Director

Children in the Audience at the Peace Celebrations, 2012

Here in central Costa Rica is the campus of the U.N. University for Peace.   The huge campus is on the side of a mountain looking to the north and east.   From the top of the mountain above the campus, one can see both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans on a clear day.

In one area of the campus is a huge set of sculptures set on stones representing the quest for peace (done by a Cuban artist).

Here I pose with Dr. Robert Muller, one of the founders of the U.N. University for Peace and Assistant Secretary General of the U.N. for 18 years.   This was taken on my first visit to Costa Rica in 1994 when I was North American organizer for the Fourth International Conference of International Philosophers for Peace in San Jose.

This is Robert Muller’s home on the mountainside above the University for Peace.   He retired to this beautiful and fairly remote location.   Although he has a steady stream of people from around the world making a pilgrimage here for his advice and counsel.

Radio for Peace International was built on the campus of the U.N. University for Peace in 1987 with the support of Robert Muller, Rodrigo Caratzo (former President of Costa Rica) and other friends of peace.  James and Debra Latham ran the station since its founding in 1987 and raised their kids in Costa Rica.  Here my daughters Rebekah (left), Irayda (center) pose with one of James and Debra’s daughters in front of the station.

Bust of Gandhi on the campus of the U.N. University for Peace

Hand releasing a peace dove on the campus of the University for Peace

The dark side of the UN University for Peace:  Radio for Peace International has been shut down and its studios, worth several hundred thousand dollars, have been stolen from the station and the listeners whose donations


The former studios of Radio for Peace International in
Costa Rica

A classroom building at the U.N. University for Peace

A close up of the empty, once vibrant, studios that operated from 1987 to 2002, broadcasting shortwave worldwide. RFPI exposed a plan between the University for Peace and the USA to hold anti-terrorist combat training on the campus.

In retaliation the UN, with the support of the US, closed down the studios and stole the station from its owners.   RFPI is still searching for a suitable new home in Costa Rica for its short-wave antennas while it continues its programming on the world wide web.


Set Two: Natural Beauty and Nature Preserves

The first seven photos below are taken of the rugged Pacific coastline

The second group of photos (below) are from rainforests, national parks, and resorts in Costa Rica

Costa Rica has incredible scenic views

Colors are gorgeous

Frequently it is possible to see things from up high

Costa Rica has several active volcanoes

These natural hot springs are said to have salubrious qualities

The pool at this resort is by the dining room and dance floor.   In the pool are Gary Hick’s daughter, Irayda, and our daughter, Rebekah.

Introduction to Peace Studies – Maymester 2005

The view from Robert Muller’s home up the hill from the University for Peace.

At a workshop led by Celina Garcia, Director of the Center for the Study for Peace in San Jose (center).

We are all equipped to begin our “Survivor Sky Adventure.”

Lake Arenal from my tram car.





Hiking in a rain forest on the slopes of Arenal.

The evening spent dancing to a Marimba band and partying with Costa Ricans.

James Latham, founder/manager of Radio for Peace International, and his wife, Leslie, our wonderful hosts and guides for this study abroad.

Evening falls on Lake Arenal and the Volcano

Study Abroad in Costa Rica, Part 2

With Rodrigo Caratzo, former President of Costa Rica, who spoke with us about how we can work for a world of peace with justice.  Back row from left are Michael, Kirk, Jesse, Carleen, Rodrigo Caratzo, Stu, and Ana Sanchez.  Front row are Scott, Melissa, and Celina Garcia.

Visiting an orphanage outside of San Jose.   We played soccer with some of the little orphan kids.  Those kids can really play!

At an open air restaurant in San Jose on the way to the National Museum of Costa Rica.

Dancing with the women and kids of La Promisa, a resettlement community of Costa Rican poor.

A visit to the incredible “Seven Waterfalls” of Costa Rica.

A herd of cattle slow our bus to a crawl as we head toward one night in a lodge in Tortuguero National Park.

The next morning we took this ride in a smaller boat through the canals to see the many animals of the rainforest.

At the final picnic with our home-stay families, the class lets loose in the pouring rain with mud soccer and, believe it or not, mud wrestling.


Introduction to Peace Studies Maymester 2005

Visiting La Carpio, a slum community of Nicaraguan immigrants.

Waling through an immense butterfly garden under a net (in the background) that is home to thousands of butterflies.

Visiting an indigenous Indian community and learning how they make their products through methods thousands of years old.

We take a lesson in “sacred dance” from Anna Orozko (right), a Journalist who also teaches classes in Sacred Dance in San Jose.

Visiting the huge “Earth University” in which everything is recycled and grown on the premises.  Students from all over Latin America learn sustainable animal and farming methods and how to begin their own businesses.

There are no roads into the jungle rain forests of Totuguero.  We traveled 22 kilometers in this boat on the inland waterway along the Caribbean coast to reach our lodge.

The beach near our lodge.  The lodge included boats for our use, a swimming pool, bar, and incredible buffet meals.

The final picnic with our home-stay families in Cuidad Colon, the town that was our home-base while in Costa Rica.


Photos of Cuidad Colon, Costa Rica

Taken by Dr. Glen T. Martin

My Spanish Teacher



September 2014

At the UN University for Peace

Planting a Universal Peace Marble, on behalf of Radford University Peace Professor Ann Mary Roberts, at the foot of the Gandhi statue on the campus of the UN University for Peace in Costa Rica.

Holding up the Peace Marble with Celina Garcia and Carlos.

Speaking with UPAZ graduate students and faculty about the Earth Constitution and the need to include this in their curriculum.

At the University of Costa Rica

Celina Garcia faithfully served as translator for all of these lectures.

The audience at UCR included those who saw the ads as well as the UCR Dean of Social Sciences with whom we met following the lecutre.

At National Autonomous University

Students in International Relations at UNA were very well-informed and asked excellent questions.

UNA (Universidad Nacional de Heredia) presentation Puede verlo junto a las fotos en:

At Fundacion CEPPA

With the Ambassador from Ecuador to Costa Rica (right) who is speaking about the Ecuador–Texaco-Chevron issue.

Universal Peace Federation compound in San Jose

Celina and I both spoke at the Universal Peace Federation meeting on Saturday, September 27, 1014.  There were a very appreciative and interested