How do we interact with the followers of (ʿAlī) al-Ḥalābī in Tunisia? Should we excuse those who have been deceived by them and become from them? And how long should the duration should the period of giving advice be?
Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Hādī al-Madkhalī:
As for the followers of al-Ḥalābī , then they are of two parties:
(Firstly) From them is the one who has fanaticism towards him (al-Ḥalābī) based on knowledge [about his affair], and this person is put beside him (treated the same as him) because ʿAlī Ḥasan ʿAbd al-Ḥamīd al-Ḥalābī has shown his deviations and has become known and argues his falsehood, and he is upon a path which is different to that which we knew him to be upon. Now, in this recent time, ʿAlī Ḥasan has tread a different path to that path which we knew him to be upon previously. So whoever is from those fanatics (towards al-Ḥalābī) is put alongside him.
(Secondly) As for the one who has been deceived by him, as the questioner has mentioned, then he is advised and not boycotted. He is advised and shown the mistakes that those people have. If Allh ﷻ wants good for him [and he accepts the truth] then Alḥamdulilāh, and if he becomes stubborn then he is placed alongside the first group, after the evidences have been shown, clarified and mentioned to him. If he turns his head away then he is placed alongside them (the first group).
As for advising, then there isn’t a specific amount time for it. You can advise a person in just one sitting and the matter will become clear for him, or maybe you advise him in two sittings and then the matter becomes clear for him, or maybe you advise him over a phone-call, or maybe you advise him in writing. The important thing is that you clarify to him with radiant (crystal-clear) evidences and explicit proofs the mistakes and deviation of his companion. His remaining upon deviation after this (advising), while he [all Praise is due to Allah] understands and has an intellect, so if he refuses (the advice) then he is placed alongside them [al-Ḥalābī and his followers].