Rebbitzen Gila Manolson was born into an assimilated Jewish family in the northeastern United States. Considering herself an atheist, she expressed her idealism through social causes, including feminism, environmentalism and vegetarianism. After graduating Yale University and traveling through Europe, she found herself in Jerusalem, where she discovered a “3000-year-old counterculture”—Torah Judaism. Intrigued by its teachings, she decided to stay and study, and never left. Today she is a practicing Orthodox Jew.
She is the author of the bestselling The Magic Touch, Outside/Inside, Head to Heart, and Choosing to Love. A fifth book, Hands Off! This May Be Love (for a general, spiritually-oriented audience, including religious Christians and other people of faith), was recently released. Her books have been translated into Hebrew, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, and Italian. Gila lives in Jerusalem with her husband and children.
Gila is now a popular international lecturer. In addition to speaking widely in Israel, she has given talks in schools, on campuses, and for organizations in 38 major North American cities, as well as outlying communities. Her lecture tours have also taken her to Switzerland, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Russia, Argentina, Chile, and the Netherlands. She was featured in the Aish HaTorah film Inspired. As an author, Gila’s greatest gratification is being told, as she has been by countless people, “Your book changed my life.”
Topics can be adapted for different ages and levels of religiosity.
Affirming Womanhood – Understanding the cosmic role of women.
The Curse of Eve: Leveling the Playing Field in Intimate Relationships
Finding Yourself in the Crowd: Judaism and Individuality
Head to Heart: A Smart Approach to Relationships
Healthy Teen Esteem
How to Have a Relationship with God
Keeping Your Feet on the Ground: Realistic Expectations of Love and Marriage
The Magic Touch: A Jewish Approach to Relationships – A full, practical argument for being shomer negiah (not touching before marriage).
Outside/Inside: A Fresh Look at Tzniut – Relevant even for religious girls who don’t want another lecture on tzniut(!)
Who Am I? Self-Definition in Judaism.
Outside/Inside: Sexuality, Spirituality and Self-Definition in Judaism.
Playing It Safe: Negotiating Male-Female Relationships Outside of the Home
Raising Today’s Religious Teenage Girl
Staying Strong in Torah
After years of advising and counseling individuals from teens through adults, Gila became an accredited Life Coach through the Jerusalem Coaching Institute, where she studied privately and in a small group with Dr. Leah Gnewisch, Ph.D., a member of the ICC (Israel Coaching Community).
Gila is always meeting wonderful people who are struggling with some obstacle to their happiness: teenagers experiencing self-esteem issues, young men and women seemingly unable to find the right person or get into a healthy relationship, college graduates having difficulty deciding what to do with their lives, husbands or wives dealing with marital issues, newly (or not so newly) religious individuals encountering difficulties in their spiritual growth. Gila is passionate about helping people overcome these and other hurdles to find satisfaction, happiness and success.
Speaking to an individual would be $60 an hour. Groups would be higher.