I'm searching for a word if you guys can help me find it.. It is the moment when for ex: you are just about to jump out of an airplane (with parachute x) ) or when the song hits THAT great note.. Or when a horse rears when you are on it.. Or any moment that only lasts for a few seconds after a longer build up..

I can't find a good word that would describe it.. closest I have found is word like 'epiphany' or 'Climax' or 'Eureka'.

closed as primarily opinion-based by tchrist, Edwin Ashworth, Drew, Misti, anongoodnurse Jan 27 '15 at 5:01

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    Depends to a degree on whether it's good, bad, or indifferent. "Fleeting" sensation of some sort is one, "flash", "flush", or "rush", perhaps. – Hot Licks Jan 25 '15 at 20:17

Are you referring to a 'fleeting' moment?

  • Or a momentary thrill of some sort. – John Lawler Jan 25 '15 at 16:34
  • Moment noun: a very brief period of time. – user98990 Jan 26 '15 at 10:00

It gave me a thrill

  • "a sudden feeling of pleasure or excitement"
  • "a quivering or trembling caused by sudden excitement or emotion." TFD
  • "a sudden sharp feeling of excitement" Merriam-Webster
  • "Vegas has enough high speed coasters and other thrill rides to leave you more thoroughly shaken than a pair of maracas."

  • "Drivers who speed, who violate other rules of the road, and who seek thrill when driving pose greater crash risk to themselves.

  • "He always had a thrill-seeking behavior.
  • "For nobody else, gave me a thrill,

    With all your faults, I love you still

    It had to be you, wonderful you, It had to be you.

(It Had to Be You", a popular song written by Isham Jones, with lyrics by Gus Kahn)


I'm going to officially propose "rush".

Third definition in the third definition of Websters Online: a surging of emotion

(It's also apparently the name of some sort of musical combo.)

  • This has been flagged; I'd add a reference. – Edwin Ashworth Jan 26 '15 at 0:29

ecstasy ?

elation ?

Also off the top of my head, I'd say ephemeral euphoria. A lot of e-words.

I think you're trying to describe two different qualities here. One is temporal: that it's brief, then disappears, would be ephemeral or transient.

The second quality is the sensual nature of the feeling. In sex, music or literature, it's a climax, but that has a different nature than the rush of adrenaline or the excitement of anticipation, satiating thirst or hunger, savoring an excellent meal, or the intoxication of alcohol.

Epiphany and eureka moment are generally reserved for flashes of insight, invention and/or genius or the occurrence of great ideas.


OP seeks a word which captures the essence of a few extraordinary (i.e., non-mundane) experiences which, while fleeting and brief, are yet of enduring import and influence. Although words like epiphany, climax, and eureka are often applied to such emotionally-charged experiences, because the OP is dissatisfied with those words, it would seem that their synonyms would be equally unsatisfactory. I will suggest one word and two short phrases:

MOMENTOUS adjective: (a decision, event, or change) of great importance or significance, especially in its bearing on the future; of unparalleled significance

Synonyms: important, significant, historic, portentous, critical, crucial, life-and-death, decisive, pivotal, consequential, of consequence, far-reaching, impactful, earth-shattering, earth-shaking;

English Wiktionary

MOMENT OF TRUTH noun (idiomatic): a deciding instant; the time when a test determines or makes it apparent whether something will succeed.

1. the point in a bullfight when the matador faces the bull for the kill

2. a critical moment or time that tests and reveals one's true self or makes one face the truth (The moment of truth comes when you jump out of an airplane (with or without a parachute!)


A calque of Spanish el momento de la verdad, which refers to the time of the final sword thrust in a bullfight.

English Wiktionary


  1. a high point in the life of a self-actualizer, during which the person feels ecstatic and more alive and whole than is usual.

What is a peak experience?

Abraham Maslow, the term's inventor, says that "peak experiences are sudden feelings of intense happiness and well-being, possibly the awareness of an "ultimate truth" and the unity of all things ... the experience fills the individual with wonder and awe....he feels at one with the world, and is pleased with it ...." They are moments when you feel more at one with yourself and the world, more integrated. You feel happy, even ecstatic, interconnected and in harmony. Peak experiences are one type of mystical experiences, and perhaps one of the most interesting in that Maslow aims to talk about mystical experiences in non-supernatural terms

Peak Experience


Those are very different situations... Perhaps you are searching for the word "pinnacle"?


Epiphany. ( relates to 'Eureka')

Reference: Wikipedia

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, "manifestation, striking appearance") is an experience of sudden and striking realization. Generally the term is used to describe scientific breakthrough, religious or philosophical discoveries, but it can apply in any situation in which an enlightening realization allows a problem or situation to be understood from a new and deeper perspective.

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