I recently listened to a podcast, called “How Awe Transforms Us,” which mentioned a term, “collective effervescence,” coined by a French sociologist named Émile Durkheim. To put it simply, it’s when people gather energy for a shared purpose.
Intrigued, I honed in on the examples of collective effervescence:
Love that “connection fuel.”
In a world that feels so disconnected and isolating—despite our technological connection…or maybe because of it—we need to find a sense of collective effervescence more than ever.
Collective effervescence (CE) ranges from the mundane to the sacred. It can be spontaneous or planned. It fills our human need to feel part of something bigger than ourselves. Ironically, it also makes our world feel smaller (in a good way): like we’re part of a “village.” In the U.S., we put individuality on a pedestal, but too often we forget that we are part of a larger society. This connection is not something that our phones or social media scrolling can replicate. It requires our full presence and engagement.
However, this isn’t the same as the superficial “we’re family” statements we might’ve heard at work and now largely understand to be problematic.
Some of my favorite CE instances: cheering with other parents at my kids’ baseball games. Or dancing at hula competition, where we literally had to dance as one. Even if we didn’t win, the energy I got from sharing that experience with others fed me for days.
Now that I ride the train a few days a week for work, I’ve had more of these moments. One day, our train to Union Station experienced delays, eventually arriving only FOUR MINUTES before the last Metrolink to my Orange County was scheduled to leave. There were several of us in that train car who needed to catch that train home, so we all made a plan to try to make it.
As the train doors opened, I held my bags tight and sprinted across the station with the other riders. Complete strangers just minutes ago, us fellow commuters cheered each other on as we ran up the stairs and dodged other passengers. With about a minute to spare, we all made it onto the train. Our middle-aged muscles burned and we gasped for air. But dammit: we did it.
With that said, in what ways have you experienced collective effervescence recently? Which experiences have stood out in your memory?
Moreover, pursuing creative endeavors can be isolating, especially when you’re hitting a rut or experiencing rejections. So when you’re feeling “meh,” consider how you can curate collective effervescence and feel less alone. When you feed your spirit, you may find more energy to overcome creative challenges.
I’ll leave you with this Herman Mellville quote, “We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men.”
Jon’s almost done with the most tedious, time-consuming part of making a graphic novel: the penciling stage. Life has been SO crazy with school, work, the kids’ activities and appointments, and other unexpected hiccups. Next, Jon will ink and color the pages. Fingers crossed that these next few months will be kind to us and allow him to catch up.
If you didn’t get a chance to purchase a book, visit our site and get one asap. We’ll be closing the storefront site in one week: Monday, 11/6 at 9am, so don’t miss your chance!
Recent Read: Fante Bukowski 2, by Noah Van Sciver
I randomly found this graphic novel in our bookshelf and gobbled it up quickly. It’s a hilarious story about a struggling writer named Fante Bukowski, who dreams of being a successful writer, yearning for credibility and respect in the writing world. However, his hubris and comical lack of talent keeps getting in the way.
I laughed out loud at certain scenes and how painfully relatable they were, like this one:
If you are a writer, an artist, or do anything creative, pick up Fante Bukowski. It's a fun and enjoyable read!
Lilo and Finn are practically besties now. Amelie isn’t thrilled, so she’s keeping her distance. But worry not: we’re offering Amelie lots of emotional support as she adapts to this change.
#1: Here’s another show we’ve been watching as a family: How to Get Rich.
The title is a bit misleading (in my humble opinion) because it’s not about “getting rich,” per se—it’s about maximizing one’s financial well-being. This can involve starting your own business, getting out of debt, or saving enough to afford a new place to live. The host, Ramit Sethi, is a financial expert who helps various people overcome financial challenges and meet their personal financial goals. The show is super engaging and leans in on the stories behind each person. As Ramit helps each client, he also integrates important lessons and tips for us to be more informed. I think financial literacy should be taught in schools, and we’re seeing the impact of not educating generations of kids about handling finances. The fact that my kids ask to watch this means I can definitely give it a big thumbs up!
#2: Our Dia De Los Muertos Altar
We’ve added a few more family members to our altar this year. But honoring and remembering them has brought us some peace and comfort. ❤️❤️
Our pomegranate haul from this month. We actually picked about three times the amount that you see in the picture, but we shared a lot of fruit with friends and family.
Thank you so much for reading! I’ll be in touch again next month with more updates.
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Some updates, musings, and sharing of inspirations.