The true believers must place the Imam first when performing any supplication.
Before one remembers himself, he must first remember the Imam and pray for him. After this, one may pray for himself and other people and this becomes a manifestation of the love a true believer has for the Imam.
Without doubt, every supplication which a true believer makes for the Imam will earn him many things one will obtain the Divine reward from Allah, gain the specific benefits related to that particular supplication and in addition, the contents of the supplication and what was prayed for will be accepted and fulfilled both for the Imam and the believer.
It has been mentioned in the traditions that whenever a person supplicates for another person, whatever he prayed for will also be applicable to him and his pleas will be accepted. In this regards, Imam Muhammad b. ‘Ali al-Baqir (as) has said:
هُوَ الْمُؤْمِنُ يَدْعُو لِأَخِيهِ بِظَهْرِ الْغَيْبِ فَيَقُولُ لَهُ الْمَلَكُ: آمِينَ وَ يَقُولُ اللٌّهُ الْعَزِيزُ الْجَبَّارُ: وَ لَكَ مِثْلاَ مَا سَأَلْتَ وَ قَدْ أُعْطِيتَ مَا سَأَلْتَ بِحُبِّكَ إِيَّاهُ
“He is a believer who prayers for his brother (in faith) in his absence, to which the Angel says: ‘Ameen (May Allah accept your prayer).’ At this time, Allah, the Noble and Grand says: ‘And for you is granted twice of that which you have asked (for your brother in faith) due to your love for him.’”1
Imam Musa b. Ja’far al-Kadhim (as) has said:
إِنَّ مَنْ دَعَا لِأَخِيهِ بِظَهْرِ الْغَيْبِ نُودِيَ مِنَ الْعَرْشِ: وَ لَكَ مِائَةُ أَلْفِ ضِعْفٍ
“Verily when one supplicates for his (believing) brother in his absence, a sound is heard from the Noble Throne: ‘For you is one hundred thousand times (the reward for what you supplicated for him).’”2
- 1. al-Kafi, vol. 2, The Book of Du’a, sec. ‘Making supplication for one’s brother while he is not there’; pg. 507, no. 3; Biharul Anwar, vol. 93, pg. 388, sec. 26, no. 19
- 2. al-Kafi, vol. 2, The Book of Du’a, sec. ‘Making supplicaiton for one’s brother when he is not there’; pg. 508, no. 6; Biharul Anwar, vol. 93, pg. 384, sec. 26, no. 8