It is related that some people said to Hasan al-Basri, “Oh Abu Saeed there is a man sitting behind a pillar here, whom we have never seen. Hasan al-Basri went to him and said, “Oh Abdullah, I see the love of seclusion has engulfed you. What prevents you from sitting with the people?”
He replied, “A matter which has averted my attention from the people”.
He then asked “So what prevents you from sitting with Hasan al-Basri?” He again replied, “A matter which has averted my attention from Hasan al-Basri and the people.”
Hasan al-Basri enquired about this affair which was keeping the man away. The man asserted, “In the morning I look at the blessings of Allah and at the sins I have committed. I then occupy myself thanking Allah for the blessings and repenting from my sins”.
Hasan al-Basri said to him, “Oh Abdullah you are more knowledgable and have better understanding than Hasan! Remain steadfast in your action.”