Al-Sayyid al-Himyari was a great companion of Imam al-Sadiq (ع), as well as the other Imams (ع). He was also a poet of Ahlulbayt (ع) who is highly praised by our Imamah (ع).
Furthermore, his title as Sayyid is not because he is Hashimi, meaning he is not from the family of the Messenger of Allah (ص). But, he was given this title ‘Sayyid’ as in ‘Master’ of a all the poets.
As narrated by Imam al-Sadiq, found in , Rijāl al-Kashi, Pg. 285, N. 505, on the authority of Abu Abdillah al-Sadiq (ع):
Your mother called you Sayyid, and you truly have lived up to this name, for your are the Master (Sayyid) of the Shu’arah (Poets).
The praises of Ahlulbayt (ع) towards this man is a lot, but what made him who he is in stature?
What made him such was his public stance in forbidding wrong & enjoining good. He would publicly condemn Abu Bakr & Umar with beautiful lines of poetry & show his Jahr in Bara’rah in a time where the Shi’a were in a state of fear. But, he takes this roll, and both roles must be taken.
As an example, here is a narration:
٧ - عن سليمان بن أرقم قال: كنت مع السيد فمر بقاص على باب أبي سفيان ابن العلاء وهو يقول: يوزن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله يوم القيامة في كفة بأمته أجمع فيرجح بهم، ثم يؤتى بفلان فيوزن بهم فيرجح، ثم يؤتى بفلان فيوزن بهم فيرجح، فأقبل على أبي سفيان فقال: لعمري إن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله ليرجح على أمته في الفضل، والحديث حق، وإنما رجح الآخران الناس في سيئاتهم، لأن من سن سنة سيئة فعمل بها بعده كان عليه وزرها ووزر من عمل بها (1) قال: فما أجابه أحد فمضى فلم يبق أحد من القوم إلا سبه.
- [الأغاني 7 ص 271]
7 - Narrated from Sulyamān Ibn Arqām, he said: I was with Al-Sayyid (al-Himyari) when we passed by a narrator (preacher) who was standing on Bab Abu Sufyan Ibn Al-‘Alā, he was saying:
On the Day of Judgment, the Messenger of Allah (saws) will be put on one side if a weight and his Ummah on the other side to weigh the deeds, when that happens the side with the Prophet (saws) will be heavier.
After that Abu Bakr will come and the same will occur, after that, Umar will come and the same will occur.
Al-Sayyid heard this and came towards the door at Abu Sufyan, and told the preacher:
When the Messenger of Allah (saws) is weighed against the Ummah he truly will outweigh them in merit and deeds, your words are truthful here, but, as as for the other two they will outweigh the Ummah but not in terms of deeds but in terms of there sins, there sins will outweigh the Ummah, because anyone who creates a new Sunnah (Bid’ah) and then after him others who follow this Sunnah will have the original weight of the sin, plus the sin of the performer.
Narrator said: No one could answer him after he spoke those words, but when he left, not a single person from the group insulted him.
Al-Aghāni, Abu Farāj Al-Asfhahāni, V.7, Pg. 271