During the period of Hazrat Basri r.a a rich person died leaving behind a large fortune to his only son. His son, who inherited the fortune, used the money for all sorts of illicit activities. All his life his mother implored him to attend the lectures of Hazrat Hassan Basri r.a so that he may return to the right path but he never heeded to her calls. After spending all of his life going against the will of Allah, he health deteriorated due to his habits. Bedridden during the fag end of his life, his mother still wanted him to visit Hazrat Hassan Basri r.a so that he may have a change of heart though at the end. The son constantly kept refusing to acknowledge his mother’s wish.
When he felt the death looming over him, he asked his mother to take him to Hazrat Hassan Basri r.a so that he may repent for his sins- he had never prayed in his life, didn’t know any Aayah, Dua that he may recite while asking for forgiveness but at this point he was too weak to get out of the bed. His mother ran to Hazrat Hassan Basri r.a and asked Hazrat to visit her son and help him to perform Taubah. At that point of time, Hazrat was teaching his students and felt it implausible to leave the class for a personal visit, so he turned the mother away. She returned back without Hassan Basri r.a and narrated her ordeal and helplessness to her son.
This had a deep impact on his heart, he now turned towards Allah and said, “Ya Allah, you are aware that I want to repent but I don’t know how to. I even asked Hassan Basri r.a to come and teach me how to but he refused to come. You can forgive me whether I know how to repent or not, whether Hassan Basri r.a is present or not. I am coming to you without any good deed, without any Salah in my name, you can forgive me. Please forgive me.”
He felt the time to be near and made a will. He asked his mother to bury him at any other place except the muslim graveyard as he feared that with the amount of the sins he has committed, the graves that would be beside him would also get punished! Further he asked his mother to tie a rope around his neck, after his death, and drag him through the town like a dog so that all of his companions who used to participate in those illicit activities with him might know what they were staring at and hopefully have a change of heart. Finally, his mother again went to Hassan Basri r.a, who had just finished the class. She asked Hazrat to lead the Jinazah of her son. Hassan Basri, against his nature, became very angry and asked the mother to return for he was not going to lead the Jinazah of a person who has never prayed a single prayer in his life.
The mother returned back, hopeless and asked the neighbours to perform the final rites as per the will and as per the norm. Soon they heard a knock at the door and when enquired who it was, the reply was, “I am Hassan (Basri)”. The mother was surprised to see the same person at door who moments before turned her request to lead the Jinazah of her son away. When she asked about the change of thought, Hassan Basri replied, “After finishing the class I slept for a while. I had a dream where somebody told me, “Hassan, did you just refuse to lead the Jinazah of a Wali? Are you willing to lose all of your Ilm because of your ego?” Just then I woke up and headed here.”