Muhammad bin Muslim
He was called Abu` Ja'far al-Awqasi al-Tahha`n. He was the retainer of Thaqif al-A'war. He was among the main thinkers. He was one of the Ima`ms of knowledge in Islam. He was one of the greatest jurists. He was among the trustees of Allah over His lawful and unlawful. He devoted his life to Ima`m al-Ba`qir and al-Sa`diq, peace be on them. He narrated many sciences on their authority.
He said: "When I faced a certain question, I asked Abu` Ja'far (al-Ba`qir), peace be on him, about the question. I asked him about thirty thousand tradition. Moreover, I asked Abu` 'Abd Allah (al-Sa`diq), peace be on him, about sixteen thousand traditions.
Honoring and Glorification
A large group of traditions was narrated on the authority of the Ima`ms of the members of the House (ahl al-Bayt), peace be on them. In the traditions, the Ima`ms praised and lauded Mohammed b. Moslem. The following is some of the traditions:
1. Al-Kashi reported on the authority of 'Abd Allah b. Ya'fu`r, who said: "I said to Abu` 'Abd Allah (al-Sa`diq), peace be on him, I cannot meet you or come to you every hour. My companions usually come and question me. I am unable to answer all what they ask. So, the Ima`m, peace be on him, said:
'What prevents you from (resorting to) Mohammed b. Moslem al-Thaqafi? For he heard from my father, and my father glorified him.'1This tradition shows that Mohammed outstanding scientific abilities and talents. So, the Moslems resorted to him to take religious opinions.
2. Al-Kashi reported on the authority of Mohammed b. Kha`lid al-Tayalisi, who said: "Mohammed b. Moslem was from the people of Ku`fa. He came to Abu` Ja'far (al-Ba`qir), peace be on him. So, Abu` Ja'far said to him: 'Give good news to the humble about the garden.' This tradition shows that Mohammed is among the close friends of Allah.
3. Jamil b. Darra`jj reported. He said: [I heard Abu` 'Abd Allah (al-Sa`diq), peace be on him, say:] "Give good news to the humble about the garden. They are Barid b. Mu'a`wiya al-'Ajali, Abu` Basir (layth b. al-Bakhtari al-Mura`di), Mohammed b. Moslem, and Zara`ra. They are four highborn persons. They are the trustees of Allah over His lawful and unlawful. Were it not for them, the traditions of the Prophet would be obliterated.
4. Ima`m Abu` 'Abd Allah (al-Sa`diq), peace be on him, said: "Four persons are the most lovable of all people with us, whether they are dead or living. They are Barid b. Mu'a`wiya al-'Ajali, Zara`ra b. A'yun, Mohammed b. Moslem, and Abu` Ja'far al-Ahwal.
Other traditions praise Mohammed's outstanding merits. They show that he had a great position with the members of the House (ahl al-Bayt), peace be on them.
His Scientific Rank
Mohammed b. Moslem was one of the most brilliant scholars of his time in outstanding merits, jurisprudence, and knowledge of the precepts of the religion. In "al-Risa`la al-Adadiya", Shaykh al-Mufid numbered him as one of the main figures and jurists, from whom (the people) took the lawful, the unlawful, religious opinions, and legal precepts, whom no one slanders and dispraises. Ima`m Abu` 'Abd Allah al-Sa`diq, peace be on him, asked the Moslem scholars to resort to Mohammed b. Moslem. Mohammed asked Abu` Ja'far (al-Ba`qir), peace be on him, about thirty thousand tradition. Moreover, he asked Abu` 'Abd Allah (al-Sa`diq), peace be on him, about sixteen thousand traditions.
Mohammed bin Muslim before Shurayk, the Judge
The historians said: "Mohammed b. Moslem and Abu` Kurayba al-Azdi testified before Shurayk, the judge, who deviated from the members of the House (ahl al-Bayt), peace be on them. Shurayk looked at their faces carefully. Then, he said: "You are two Ja`faris Fatimis. I do not accept your testimony." When they heard that, they wept. Shurayk was astonished at them, so he asked them: "What has made you weep?
They replied: "You have attributed us to people. The people do not accept us to be among their brothers when they see our foolishness. You have ascribed us to a man. The man (i. e., Ima`m al-Sa`diq, peace be on him) who does not accept us to be among his Shi'ites. If he accepted us, we would be grateful to him.
Shurayk admired them, so he said: "People should be like you." Then he accepted their testimony.
Mohammed b. Moslem and Abu` Kurayba made the pilgrimage to the Sacred House of Allah. Then they met Ima`m al-Sa`diq, peace be on him. They told him about the conversation that occurred between them and Shurayk. The Ima`m, peace be on him, was displeased with Shurayk. So, he said: "Shurayk will have nothing on the Day of Judgment except a share of fire.
Muhammad bin Muslim sold dates
Mohammed b. Moslem was one of the rich in Ku`fa. Ima`m Abu` Ja'far (al-Ba`qir), peace be on him, asked him to sell dates to save his life from the Umayyads, who illegally shed the blood of the Shi'ites. Thus, Mohammed took dates and scales, and then he sat at the door of the mosque of Ku`fa. Some people came and said to him: "You have exposed us!" "My master, Abu` Ja'far (al-Ba`qir, peace be on him) asked me to do that. So, I have obeyed his order," he said to them. They said to him: "If you insist on buying and selling, then sit with millers." He responded to them. So, he bought a hand mill and sat with the millers. With this he could save his life.
This great figure passed away in the year 150 A. H. Then, his companions buried him. They buried in the earth jurisprudence, virtues, piety, and devoutness.
2. Mu'jam Rijal al-Hadith
3. Tanqih al-Maqal
4. Ibn al-Nadim, Fihrist
5. Al-Tusi, Fihrist