When using org build subtree navigation functions to move around, I want to show all the content of current one recursively, and hide any other subtrees that having a higher or same level of the current one. How to achieve this ? Thanks !

2 Answers 2


Edited in response to first comment

Not quite sure if this is what you want, but here's a function that will show the current subtree (and its children) and fold all other headings to their top level:

(defun ess/org-show-just-me (&rest _)
  "Fold all other trees, then show entire current subtree."

Now you can add advices for each command you want to use this function together with:

(advice-add 'org-forward-heading-same-level :after #'ess/org-show-just-me)
(advice-add 'org-backward-heading-same-level :after #'ess/org-show-just-me)

Another alternative is to use org-narrow-to-subtree to hide all other content than the current subtree. It is bound to C-x n s by default. To go back, use widen, bound to C-x n w. A great alternative is narrow-or-widen-dwim.

You could add widen followed by org-narrow-to-subtree to a function and create this as an advice in the same way as the example above.

  • I know about org-narrow-to-subtree, but I want to show and hide content automatically every time I use a build in function like org-forward-heading-same-level to move around. I'll read about narrow-or-widen-dwim soon. Thanks ! Commented Dec 15, 2016 at 11:12
  • Okay, I've updated the answer and hopefully it does what you want. Commented Dec 15, 2016 at 14:39
  • This helped a lot to find a workaroud for this question. Commented Jun 12, 2020 at 11:06

There is strange parameters in (org-reveal), it require '(4) to be passed to works right, idk why.

For Org mode:

(defun my/org-fold-hide-other ()
     "Hide other headers and reveal current and don't hide headers and text in opened ones."
       (org-overview) ;; hide others
       (org-reveal '(4)))) ;; reveal current place appropriate)

(add-hook 'org-mode-hook (lambda ()
                           (local-set-key (kbd "C-c e") 'my/org-fold-hide-other))

For outline mode:

(defun my/outline-hide-other ()
     "Hide other headers and don't hide headers and text in opened ones.
like (outline-hide-other)"
       (outline-hide-sublevels 1) ;; hide all, set level to required!
       (outline-show-children) ;; show headers, not shure how and wehere,
       (outline-back-to-heading t) ;; to header in depths
       (outline-show-entry) ;; show local text
       (outline-up-heading 1 t) ;; go upper
       (while ( > (funcall outline-level) 1) ;; while not at first header
           (outline-show-children) ;; show subheaders
           (outline-up-heading 1 t) ;; go upper
   (add-hook 'outline-mode-hook (lambda ()
      (local-set-key (kbd "C-c e") 'my/outline-hide-other))

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