Volume 3, Book 49, Number 867 :
Narrated by Al-Hasan Al-Basri
By Allah, Al-Hasan bin Ali (radiallaahu `anhu) led large battalions like mountains against Muawiya. Amr bin Al-As (radiallaahu `anhu) said (to Muawiya), “I surely see battalions which will not turn back before killing their opponents.” Muawiya (radiallaahu `anhu), who was really the best of the two men, said to him, “O ‘Amr! If these killed those and those killed these, who would be left with me for the jobs of the public, who would be left with me for their women, who would be left with me for their children?” Then Muawiya (radiallaahu `anhu) sent two Quraishi men from the tribe of ‘Abd-i-Shams called ‘Abdur Rahman bin Sumura and Abdullah bin ‘Amir bin Kuraiz to Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) saying to them, “Go to this man (i.e. Al-Hasan) and negotiate peace with him and talk and appeal to him.” So, they went to Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) and talked and appealed to him to accept peace. Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “We, the offspring of ‘Abdul Muttalib, have got wealth and people have indulged in killing and corruption (and money only will appease them).” They said to Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu), “Muawiya offers you so and so, and appeals to you and entreats you to accept peace.” Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) said to them, “But who will be responsible for what you have said?” They said, “We will be responsible for it.” So, what-ever Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) asked they said, “We will be responsible for it for you.” So, Al-Hasan (radiallaahu `anhu) concluded a peace treaty with Muawiya (radiallaahu `anhu).
Al-Hasan (Al-Basri) said: I heard Abu Bakr (radiallaahu `anhu) saying, “I saw Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) on the pulpit and Al-Hasan bin ‘Ali (radiallaahu `anhu) was by his side. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was looking once at the people and once at Al-Hasan bin ‘Ali (radiallaahu `anhu) saying, ‘This son of mine is a Saiyid (i.e. a noble) and may Allah make peace between two big groups of Muslims through him.”
If a person is known by this title, there is nothing wrong with that, because the word “Sayyid” may be used for the leader of a people, or for a faqeeh or scholar, or for those who are descended from Faatimah through the children of al-Hasan and al-Husayn. All of these are forms of address which are well known among the people. The Arabs used to call tribal leaders and elders “Sayyid” (e.g. Sayyid Bani Foolaan – the leader of such-and-such tribe, etc). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used this word, when he asked some of the Arabs, “Who is your leader (sayyid), O Banu So-and-so? Who is your leader (sayyid), O Banu So-and-so?”, i.e., who is your chief? And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said concerning al-Hasan, “This son of mine is a sayyid and perhaps Allaah will reconcile two great groups of Muslims through him.” It is disliked (makrooh) to address a person as Ya sayyidi (O my master) or Yaa sayyidanaa (O our master), because when it was said to the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), “You are our master,” he said, “The Master is Allaah, may He blessed and exalted”; and because this may make him conceited and proud. So we should not do that. Instead we should say, “O So and so” or “So Abu (father of) So and so,” using the names, kunyas (Abu So and so, etc.) and nicknames which are known.
With regard to using the phrases “Yaa Sayyidi” and “Yaa Sayyidanaa” when addressing one another, it is better not to do that.
Saying “Sayyid” to a munaafiq or kaafir is not permissible, because of the hadeeth, “Do not say ‘Sayyidanaa’ to a munaafiq, because if he is really your master then you have angered your Lord.” (Narrated by Ahmad, Abu Dawood and al-Nasaa’i; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, no. 7405, p. 1234)
Taken from IslamQA
Allah’s Name: “Al-Sayyid”
Allaah is al-Sayyid (the Master), i.e., the Sovereign of the universe; all of creation is enslaved to Him.
Allaah is the One Who is needed in an absolute sense. No created being is independent of Him. If He did not create them, they would not exist, and if He did not sustain them after creating them, they would not remain. If He did not help them with all that they are faced with, they would have no help besides Him. So it is His right that His created beings should call Him, and none other, al-Sayyid.
Taken from IslamQA
Giving the title “Sayyid” to Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)
Giving the title Sayyiduna to the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) is right and proper, because he is the master (sayyid) of the sons of Adam, and it is proven that he (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “I am the master (sayyid) of the sons of Adam and no boast.” He is the master of mankind and the Messengers. So if a man says Sayyiduna Muhammad, and: Allahumma salli ‘ala Sayyiduna Muhammad (O Allah, send blessings upon our master Muhammad), there is nothing wrong with that. He is the master (Sayyid) of the sons of Adam and the master of mankind.
He only disliked that from people during his lifetime because he feared that they might exaggerate. So when they said, You are our master (sayyid), he said: “Al-Sayyid is Allah, may He be blessed and exalted,” so as to block the means (that might lead to exaggeration), as he was afraid that they might exaggerate about him (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). But after he died (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), and as he told us that he is the master (sayyid) of the sons of Adam, there is nothing wrong with saying Sayyiduna (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). So he is the best of us, and our master (sayyid), and our leader (imam), and he is a close friend of the Most Merciful (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him).
Taken from IslamQA