The Muwatta of Imam Malik



“Abu Jafar had a very esteem place in knowledge among the scholars, both before and after the Caliphate. 

He was the main person who insisted upon Imam Malik to write the Muwatta.

He once said, O Abu ‘Abdullah —> {Imam Malik}, today there is no one who is more knowledgeable on the face on this earth than you and I. 

The demands of the Caliphate leave me with no time to do any scholarly work. You should write a book that will benefit people. In your book you should avoid the concessions {Rukhas} of ‘Abdullahi ibn ‘Abbas, avoid the sternness {Shadaid} of ibn ‘Umar and avoid the peculiarities {Shawwaz} of ibn Masud. May Allah be well pleased with them

Make your book easy for the people to follow…

The word Muwatta means: Easy and soft and it also means –> “the Well-Trodden Path.”

Before Imam Malik wrote the Muwatta, another high ranking scholar from Madinah, by the name of Imam ibn Abi Ziad; also wrote a book and named it the Muwatta, however his book was much thicker than the Muwatta of Imam Malik. 

Imam Malik was asked once. What is the use of you writing a Muwatta when we already have one? 

He replied: Only that book will remain which is written for the pleasure of Allah.

{Related by the Historian Ibn Khaldun in his Muqaddimah}


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