elan [eɪˈlɑːn] n.
1.) An impetuous rush (e.g. of troops).
2.) In English use chiefly abstract: Ardour, impetuousness, vivacity (O.E.D. 2nd Ed.).
Etymology: French; believed to be from élancer, from Latin ex, out + late Latin lanceāre, from lancea, lance.
"But Blondel contests the very idea of a natural happiness for man, just as he contests the idea of a natural religion, based on no more than human musings about the divine, without some revelation from God in his transcendence, that is, for a nature whose very elan is a quest for the infinite, an aspiration at once congenital and inefficacious by itself, for a knowledge that saturates and a fruition that leaves nothing to be desired" (Maurice Blondel: A Philosophical Life, Oliva Blanchette, 2010).