I'm using Spacemacs for clojure development and have gotten used to the vim commands mostly. However, when I start up a Repl I would like to only use holy mode with insert mode. Does anyone know how/if this can be done?

1 Answer 1


By holy mode, do you mean the normal emacs mode?

If so, you can easily switch between the two with C-z.

EDIT. To automate this for a specific mode, try using evil-set-initial-state.

I'm not familiar with REPLs, but maybe this can help. I use the following to switch to emacs bindings when using org-brain. Replace 'org-brain-visualize with the mode you use in the REPL.

(with-eval-after-load 'evil
 (evil-set-initial-state 'org-brain-visualize-mode 'emacs))

This should go in the user-config part of your .spacemacs file.

  • Yes, I believe in spacemacs the two modes are Evil vs Holy. And you're right, switching is fairly easy as it is, but I would like to start a Repl in Holy mode (emacs bindings) by default, but have all other buffers use Evil mode as default.
    – maxorcist
    Commented May 28, 2018 at 8:36
  • I think you could use evil-set-initial-state. I'll try and edit my answer.
    – EFLS
    Commented May 28, 2018 at 11:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.