Answered by our Shaykh, the ‘Allaamah, the Sincere Adviser, Abu ‘Abdirrahman Yahya bin ‘Ali Al-Hajoori – may Allaah preserve him –
Could you explain to us in summary how either of the two ‘Sahihs’ is better than the other?
What the people of knowledge have mentioned in regards to this, in summary is:
قالوا: لمسلم فضل
قلت: البخاري أعلى
قالوا: المكرر فيه
قلت المكرر أحلى
“They said: In Muslim is virtue
I said: Bukhari is higher (in chain of narration)
They said: It contains repetition
I said: repetition makes it sweeter”
The people of knowledge say:
(ما تكرر تقرر وفي إعادة إفادة)
“What’s repeated is reiterated and there is benefit in repetition.”
And the repetition in Bukhari is due to a benefit and an important reason, for this reason it’s of more benefit for the student of knowledge.
And repetition is not blameworthy upon its absolute, it could be monotonous if the intent was known and understood and there was no aim or goal in the repetition.
In short: repetition in its correct place is good, and not good in other than its rightful place.
And the narrations which have observations are less than in Muslim, and in Bukhari the men, in some of the chain of narrations, which have been spoken about, the majority are in what relates to the Mutaabi’aat (that which has the presence of another narrator coinciding with another narrator in the narration of the hadeeth, from the same shaykh, or those above him), and Bukhari is more in depth in Fiqh, and of more benefit.
Translated by Abu ‘Abdirrahman ‘Abdullaah bin Ahmed Ash-Shingaani