[1/214] al-Kafi: A number of our companions from Ahmad b. Muhammad from Muhammad b. Ismail from Ibrahim b. Abi al-Ballad from Muawiya b. Ammar who said: we were about thirty men in the presence of Abi Abdillah عليه السلام when my father entered in to see him. Abu Abdillah عليه السلام welcomed him, made him sit by his side and turned to him [to talk] for a long time, then Abu Abdillah عليه السلام said: Abi Muawiya has a private request so if you could all leave us, we all stood but my father said to me: return O Muawiya, so I returned. Abu Abdillah عليه السلام said: this one is your son? He [my father] said: yes, he claims that the people of Madina do something which is not permitted for them, he [the Imam] said: what is that? I [Muawiya] said: a Qurashi and a Hashimi woman mounts [a camel] by putting her hand on the head of a black slave and while her forearm is on his neck [for support]. Abu Abdillah عليه السلام said: O son – do you read the Qur’an? I said: yes, he said: read this verse: “there is no blame upon women [to expose themselves to] their fathers or their sons … or those their right hands possess [slaves]” (33:55), then he said: O son, there is no harm if the slave sees the hair and the shin [of a non-Mahram woman]. Comments
The Hadith seems to preserve Muawiya b. Ammar’s first direct verbal exchange with the master under the prodding of his father – a man honoured by the Imam [as can be clearly seen above]. This was to mark the start of a long period of tutelage under the Imam at the end of which Muawiya could be rightfully considered a foremost student of the school of Ahl al-Bayt. Nothing can better demonstrate this last claim than the fact that he has no less than 964 surviving narrations in the four books attributed to him.
al-Najashi says about him:
كان وجها في أصحابنا ومقدما، كثير الشأن، عظيم المحل، ثقة، وكان أبوه عمار ثقة في العامة
He was an eminent one among our companions and having precedence. Very meritorious and of great standing. Trustworthy. His father Ammar was considered trustworthy by the `Amma [proto-Sunnis].
Muawiya b. Ammar’s Kitab al-Hajj [i.e. containing his questions to al-Sadiq on the topic of Hajj] became one of the most widely transmitted books of the early period. A reconstruction of this book which has recently been published proves its comprehensiveness [there is next to no Bab in Hajj where we do not have a Hadith narrated by Muawiya]. In fact one can claim without exaggeration that the true method of Hajj which the Shia perform today as taught to them by their `Aimma owes a lot to Muawiya’s scholarship.
[1/214] الكافي: عدة من أصحابنا، عن أحمد بن محمد، عن محمد بن إسماعيل، عن إبراهيم بن أبي البلاد، عن معاوية بن عمار قال: كنا عند أبي عبد الله […]