News & Events

Our Podcast, Events, Books and Fine Art

Martial Arts Intelligence

Recent Posts on the life and practice of martial arts

Podcast – Mistaken Zen in Martial Arts, II

Podcast – Mistaken Zen in Martial Arts, II

October 10, 2019

How much can a teacher really do for you? What does Zen have to do with martial arts?

Having a Practice

Having a Practice

October 1, 2019

Having a practice is not the same as doing an activity or learning a skill set. An ‘activity’ is interesting or pleasant or distracting or edifying or fun. We enjoy it. It might make a lasting impression, but it probably won’t. Go to dinner or a movie, play a game or go for a walk. […]

Keeping it Real

Keeping it Real

September 28, 2019

How much do we need to modify techniques for safety, without sacrificing realism and maximum challenge? Full contact with no equipment? Kata only? Jyu kumite? Ippon kumite? Where do we draw the line. What’s real? What prepares us for real defense? What is a “natural” way to train?

Warrior Samadhi in Kata

Warrior Samadhi in Kata

September 25, 2019

The brilliant beam of a search light sweeps past where this guy is hiding, crouched behind a dumpster.  The light slides down along the wall. For a second the darkness returns. Without a sound he sprints behind the building and disappears. He felt the lapse in his opponent’s perception and got away. When you face off […]

Sakiyama Sogen’s Last Letter

Sakiyama Sogen’s Last Letter

September 18, 2019

“The final hurdle for us is to be free from the limitations of our own ego. The disease of modern people is that they are slaves to money, power, fame, etc. They are enslaved by their own egos, and are unaware of it. You will become a true master when you become aware of it, and become free of it. There is no easy way, but it is the most important task, one worth devoting one’s life to accomplishing. This is the central task for anyone trying to master a true martial art.

Does It Really Work?

Does It Really Work?

September 14, 2019

A critique of martial arts is that the benefits it claims to offer – for health, fighting competence, and spiritual training – are overstated. It is worth considering that, if you are seriously practicing, the opposite is true – the benefits of martial arts for health, combative skill and spiritual development – are wildly understated. But you have to know what you’re doing.

Podcast – Zen Confusion in the Martial Arts

Podcast – Zen Confusion in the Martial Arts

September 11, 2019

D.T. Suzuki, who introduced Zen to the west, blamed the devotion of Zen priests to militant Japanese imperialism in the years leading up to World War II, on the fact that the priests were uneducated. Zen priests, he said “…have no knowledge or learning and therefore are unable to think… independently…” (Cited by Brian Victoria, in Zen at War.) Many modern Zen practitioners…

Beyond Self-defense

Beyond Self-defense

September 8, 2019

To go beyond self-defense we need to master self-defense. We need to transform our bodies and minds in the heat and pressure of action – inside the dojo and perhaps outside as well. We need to deeply penetrate the meaning and purpose of our techniques, and be able to apply them spontaneously and effectively, under pressure. We need to develop the quality of character of a warrior – calm, clear, purposeful, strong, and totally committed.

Podcast – Fuel for Love – Part 1

Podcast – Fuel for Love – Part 1

September 7, 2019

Modern culture is poison. Martial arts is medicine. …As long as science and culture are used in a way that treats the world and its people as material, treats minds as brains, uses gain and
ambition as sufficient motives for action, and feels no compunction
about leaving loving kindness out when considering what to do…

The Peak Experience

Our members have different goals and abilities. They all come for a challenge. Here is what they have to say:

Troy Rogers

Morality or our Core beliefs are guarded by training the mind, body, & spirit. I have practiced martial arts since I was a young man and I recommend my home Dojo and teacher Sensei Jeff Brooks at Mountain Karate for this Journey to everyone.

Troy Rogers
Srinivas Jaini

The energy and inspiration from Sensei Brooks teaching is invaluable. I’ve been to 2 summer seminars hosted by Sensei Brooks, and both have been packed with learning, experiences and unforgettable memories for me and my family. We look forward to more training opportunities! 

Srinivas Jaini
Michael Flynn

“Mountain Karate has helped my daughter learn several valuable lessons at a young age which will serve her well for the rest of her life: hard work, focus, getting up and trying again after you fall, and courage even when you’re nervous or scared. It’s a testament to the skilled and patient instructors that she’s learned all of this with a huge grin on her face throughout.”

Michael Flynn
Tula Flynn

Karate makes me feel strong!

Tula Flynn
Dr. Bonnie Williamson

Karate has numerous health benefits for everyone and all ages.   If anyone in Henderson/Polk County is interested – We have a real gem here in Saluda With Jeff Brooks’ Mountain Karate. I personally love it and is fabulous exercise. 

Dr. Bonnie Williamson
Tarleton Brooks

Karate saved my life when I was confronted – and it has made an incredible difference in every part of life – in ways I could never have imagined when I started training almost 20 years ago. – Sensei Tarleton Brooks, Martial arts instructor, painter, mother.

Tarleton Brooks
Cassandra Nelson

“I’m grateful for the opportunity Sensei Brooks offers, to delve into an art that challenges mind and body, perceptions and self awareness. It will take a lifetime to comprehend but I’m enjoying every step along the way!” – Cassandra Nelson, Martial Arts and Yoga instructor and Builder.

Cassandra Nelson
Michael Lushington

Mountain karate is an exceptional martial arts training environment with clear and effective instruction backed by years of personal, professional and practical experience.  I recommend it highly. – Sensei Michael Lushington, Black Belt Instructor, Dojo Leader

Michael Lushington
Eric P. Bishop

Mountain Karate has helped instill in my son Bruce the long-standing traditions of discipline, perseverance, and a pursuit of excellence. – Eric P. Bishop, Author, “The Body Man”

Eric P. Bishop
Bruce Bishop

I love karate. It’s great!

Bruce Bishop
%d bloggers like this: