There is no doubt that every son of Adam [peace be upon him] is a sinner. What distinguishes one from the other is that some people feel remorse for what they have done in the past while others don’t feel any remorse for it. The first group repents and continually strives to improve, while the other group sits back and not ponder about their past evil deeds and therefore resolve to turn a new leaf. For a sincere person, sin is painful; its pain lingers in his heart for many years, very often until the day he dies. An example of such a person is the noble companion; Said bin Amir[RA].
During the caliphate of Umar bin AI-khattab [RA], Said bin Amir [RAJ was the governor of Hims, a city in Ash-Sham. When Umar [RAJ visited Hims to see how things were going there, he was met by a large group of people who began to complain to him about Said [RA]. Basically, they found fault with Said [RA] in four matters. First, they said, he would not come out to them until mid-morning. Second, he would refuse to answer any caller during the night. Third, once a month, he would stay away from the people. And fourth, every once in a while, Said [RA] would faint and lose consciousness for no apparent reason.
The leader of the believers asked Said [RA] to respond to their complaints. In regard their complaints. In regard to the first complaint, Said [RA] explained that he had no servant and that, every morning, as he had to crush his own wheat in order to make bread, he said, he would then go out to serve the people. As for not answering any callers during the night, he said that he dedicated his days to serving the people, and his nights to worshipping Allaah. As for not going out to the people once a month, he explained that he had only one garment and that he washed it once a month and then waits until it dried. As for passing out very often, Said [RA] gave this explanation: "When I was a polytheist, I witnessed the brutal execution of Habib AI-Ansari in Makkah. I saw how Quraish cut up his flesh [little by little].
They said to Habib, Do you want for Muhammad [peace and blessings be upon him] to take your place? He said, By Allaah, l would not want to be safe with myself, my family, and my children, if Muhammad [peace and blessings be upon him] were even to be pricked by a thorn. Every time I remember that day and how I refrained from helping Habib - for I was a polytheist and did not believe in Allaah, the All-Mighty - I begin to think that Allaah will never forgive me. It is then that I faint, O leader of the believers" Stories of Repentance By Muhammad al-MughaWiri
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited