Recess for the Soul


Powerfully Playful Poetic Performances

Bernie's Recess for the Soul performances are funny, profound, interactive and deeply compelling. His surprisingly original story/poems describing imaginary playground games, equipment and players, provide meditative, contemplative, mind- and soul-expanding entertainment.

Recess for the Soul teaches you playful creative relaxation techniques that helps bring together all the various aspects of your personality, to explore and expand your consciousness, to exercise your playfulness and imagination.

Book a performance: contact Bernie directly.



Buy Bernie's spoken-word CD with uniquely playful, healing exercises for making the heart whole
Mastered and edited by Emmy Award-winning musician and composer, Daoud Shaw

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"The CD is clever and charming, with a light touch of humor and irony, a brilliant little set-piece that has the ability to just slightly alter your perception and make you offkilter enough to look at how you get through your day, and how you interact with what psychologists increasingly recognize as multiple selves in everyone, neurotic or not." - Download this file from AHP Perspective Magazine. (Reprinted from the February/March AHP Perspective magazine, published by the Association for Humanistic Psychology,

"Thank you so much for the priceless gift Recess for the Soul. It's a treasure of inner games and sanctuaries done in a poetic language which is an induction/invitation to play with ourselves and with you Bernie! It is parallel to my research in asserting that humans have the talent and hard wiring to create inner sanctums in their mind in which they are safe, playful and happy. It goes beyond my work indeed in make that space a playroom instead of a monastery of quiet peace. - Dr. Blue

"...a tool of incomparable effectiveness whether for personal growth or in process with others " - Jay Beckwith

" approach to mind-expansion through the imagery of childhood play " - Dr. Adam Blatner

"...completely original and quite profound" - Matt Weinstein

"...a remarkable vehicle for self healing." - Dr. Jeanne Segal

"I really liked it, Bernie. Very zen. Thought provoking AND un-thought provoking. Like a straigtforward lesson in insight meditation." - Howard Rheingold

"...although his pretending exercises may be disguised as "play" I recognize Bernie's role as a compassionate healer." - Phylameana lila Desy

"My inner playground was getting pretty interesting when I realized that gravity, scale, color and sound -- --and whatever else -- could be controlled by me in an instant." - Bob Gregson, artist

"Bernie DeKoven’s Recess for the Soul is an amazing feat of consciousness - a gift of deep playfulness, joy and lightheartedness. Learning to meditate and contemplate in Bernie's Inner Playground leads listeners to expansions and expansions of awareness. Learning new games to play with one's Inner Players reveals a path to inner peace and psychological health.” - Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi

"This is a CD written and spoken by Bernie. It isn’t a novel, though Bernie’s voice makes it feel at times like you are listening to an Audio book. It isn’t quite inspirational, though it gives you much to think about. It isn’t quite comedy, but I found myself laughing out loud more than once. While it isn’t any of those things exactly, it is some of each of them. Listening to this 40 minute CD will help you think about how you can use your beautiful brain to be more reflective and playful. It includes thought provoking commentary and real-life fun exercises that you can do to make your mind a place you want to spend more time with. The production values are fantastic and I promise you won’t find another product quite like this anywhere." - Kevin Eikenberry

Even if the listener is unable to find the state of mind to meditate, the exercises are, on the surface, entertaining and very funny - yet invite relaxation and self-exploration. Recess for the Soul is very mindfully composed and artfully presented. - Katherine Morales, cyclist

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