There are two fundamental source of Islam one is Quran and other is Hadith. Quran give us order and Hadith give us way how to obey that orders. Source of Hadith is Holly prophet (PBUH) but after him, there Companions start narrating. There were hundreds of companions of Holly prophet (PBUH) and they were all spread. Then Muslim Scholars start learning that Hadith and collecting it one place .so that it can be safe in future. Imam Muslim was one of them .and he has second most authentic collection of Hadith.
Full name of Imam Muslim is Abul Hassan Muslim bin al-Hajjaj al Qushayri.He belonged to the Qushayr Tribe of arb.He is grandson of Qushayr bin Ka`b who is also a great scholar of muslim.He was born in Naisabur (Nishapur) Khursan on 202 or 206 H (819 or 821 CE). His parents are religious mind that’s why he raised up in pious environment. Therefore, this set inerasable effect on his mind and he decided to devote his life in serving of Islam.
His father starts teaching him when he was twelve. When he reached at the age of 18-he start learning Hadith knowledge from dominant scholars of that time like al taimmi, Is-haq b.Rahawayh, Yahya bin bakr and other. He also performed his Hajj when he was 10.and in that period he also learn knowledge of Hadith from al-Qa`nab who is also well known professor. After returning from kufa, he resides there for some time to gain some knowledge. After traveling all over, the world he then settled in his hometown naishapur. There he met with Imam Bukhari who has most authentic hadith.and he remained attach to him till his death. He was also attached with other well known scholar Muhammad bin Yahiya AdhDhuhli .but when conflict of views occur between imam Bukhari and imam Yahiya ,imam Muslim preferred Imam Bukhari and left the group of imam Yahiya.
Imam Muslim travelled far and wide to gain the knowledge of Hadith so he travelled countries of Arabia, Egypt, Iraq, Syria, and many others. Where he benefited by great scholars of Hadith by attending their lecture. First journey of his was toward Hejaz where he spent several year under learning of Said b. Manthur, Abu Muscat al-Zuhri and Isma`IL b. abi Uways and other. Then he comes back through busra kufa, Bagdad, Kufa and Balkh.
He visited Bagdad many time, in start he gain knowledge from group of Muhaddithin like Imam Ahmed bin Handel and others. He also taught SA`id b. Manthur, Abu Mus`ab al-Zuhri and Isma`IL b. abi Uways.
He also visited ray so that he collect knowledge from scholars like Muhammad bin Mahran al-Jamal.
He also visited Rayy when he completed Sahih Muslim.
He also visits Egypt, Syria and many other places where he know that some authentic scholars of Hadith are.
He learn from more then 220 scholars
Imam Muslim collect over 300,000 Hadith .He just added 4000 in his book. These 4000 are checked verified and authentic. That is why Sunni Muslim acknowledges it second most authentic book.
Sahih Muslim is furthered dived into 43 books, which contain 7190 narration. Sahih Muslim contains only Sahih Hadith.
Muslim Scholar name Munthiri said that there are only 2200 Hadith that are not repeated .Another Scholar name Muhammad Amen there are only 1400 authentic Hadith that are reported in other books. Feature that make Sahih Muslim prominent are
• Only those Hadith were shared who were reported by Companion of Muhammad (PBUH) and by two independent and authentic.
• Imam Muslim mentions exact word and point out if there is difference between wordings of their reporter.
• Imam Muslim arranges them in chapter and tells about its narrator.
He also writes other books of Hadith like Al-Kitab Al-Musnad Al-Kabir Alar-Rijkl, Al-Jami'Al-Kabir, Kitab-ul-Asma' wal-Kuna, Kitab-ul'Ilal, Kitab-ul-Wahdan, etc.
He has wide range of student who learn science of Hadith from him .Many of them become famous and occupied a prominent position are bu Hatim Razi, Musa bin Harun, Ahmad bin Salamah, Abu `Isa Tirmidhi, Abu Bakr bin Khuzaimah, Abu `Awanah and Hafiz Dhahbi.
Imam Muslim lived for 55 years. He spent maximum time of his life in learning Hadith and compilation .He died in 261/875 and was buried in Nisha purr.