One day, as Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه and Hussainرضي الله عنه were walking together, they heard a man supplicating to Allah. The man was begging Allah to forgive him for his evil crimes. His sincere tone and words aroused the interest of Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه , who turned to his son and said, “Do you not hear the man who is so remorseful because of his sins? Go and catch up with him and call him.”
When Hazrat Hussain رضي الله عنه caught up with the man, he saw that he was clean-looking, clean-smelling, with nice clothes and altogether handsome- except that he seemed to be paralyzed on the right side of his body. Hazrat Hussain رضي الله عنه said, “Answer the summons of the Leader of the believers, Hazrat Ali bin Abu Taalib.”
Dragging his right side, the man followed Hazrat Hussain رضي الله عنه back to where Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه was waiting for them.
“Who are you and what is your story?” asked Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه .
“My story is that of a man who did not fulfill the rights of others and is now being punished for that.” said the man.
“And what is your name?” asked Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه .
“Munaazil bin Laahiq,” said the man.
“And what is your story?” asked Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه .
“I was famous among the Arabs for my evil and sins. Merciful and kind, my father would constantly admonish me and advise me to mend my ways. He would remind me of Allah’s punishment, saying, ‘My son, do not go against He who punishes with the Hell-fire!’ When he would persist in advising me, I felt his voice grating on my nerves. I would get so frustrated that I would beat him harshly. In response to my beating, he one day said, ‘By Allah, I will fast without breaking my fast and I will pray without stopping to sleep.’ He fasted for an entire week, but on seeing no change in my behaviour, he climbed a camel and set off to perform Hajj. His parting words were, ‘I am going to the House of Allah, and there I will seek help from Allah Ta’ala against you.’ When he reached Makkah, he embraced the khilaaf of the Kaa’ba and supplicated against me, asking Allah Ta’ala to make me paralyzed on one side of my body. By the One Who raised the sky and sends down the rain, no sooner did my father finish his supplication than I became paralyzed on my right side, which became like a piece of wood. Anyone that would then pass by me would point to me and say, ‘Allah Ta’ala answered his father’s supplication against him.”
“What did your father do then?” asked Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه .
“O Leader of the Believers, after he became pleased with me, I asked him to go back and invoke Allah Ta’ala on my behalf. He agreed to do so. I walked alongside him as he rode on his camel, until we reached a place called the Valley of Arak. When we reached there, a group of birds flew away from a tree & their sudden movement frightened the camel. As the camel raced off in a state of fright, my father fell off and passed away.”
It was certainly late for the man, but not too late, and so Hazrat Ali رضي الله عنه advised him to continue to supplicate and to repent for his past misdeeds.