In “Songyuan Chongyue (松源崇岳): His Biography and Thought” (IBK 54:1, 2006), I examined Songyuan's stupa inscription from Lu You's (陸游) Weinan wenji, and pointed out that “It is not the tongue that one speaks with,” one of the two turning phrases from his Record of Sayings, is of great importance.
This phrase, together with another, “Why is a man (of great strength) not able to lift his legs?”, were both introduced as the 20th case in The Gateless Passage (無門関). “Obviously, the two phrases,” as Takashi Hirata commented in his annotated translation of The Gateless Passage, “indicate Songyuan's criticism of Chan quietism.”
It is now known, however, from the teachings of the founder of Kencho-ji (建長寺) and Songyuan's second generation successor, Lanxi Daolong (蘭渓道隆) that Songyuan in fact put great emphasis on seated meditation. In this paper, the relationship between seated meditation and his two turning phrases is addressed. I am certain that the two turning phrases are concerned with nothing more than his opinions on true enlightenment through a koan. It can be inferred that, by examining Dahui's (大慧) sayings on seated meditation and koan practice, efforts in both practices are equally necessary. Hirata's conclusion about Songyuan's criticism of Chan quietism therefore proves inappropriate.