These are from the teachings of Hakim al-Umma Hadhrat Mawlana Ashraf ‘Ali Thanawi (may Allah have mercy on him).
It is important to remember that these rules are only valid for genuine (kamil) Shaykh. If by mistake someone has affiliated to a false or imperfect (ghair kamil) or innovative (bida’ti) Shaykh it is essential for him to forsake this relationship immediately and seek a real Shaykh.
They include the following,
1. Death of the Shaykh before completion of spiritual journey (sulook).
2. Shaykh can not be located, either he he has moved or murid has travelled somewhere and no communication is possible at all.
3. God-forbid, the Shaykh has been struck by a spiritual calamity, physical or mental illness and is no more capable of directing others.
4. Shaykh himself instructs the spiritual aspirant to seek another Shaykh.
5. In spite of sincerely following the Shaykh for a considerable period of time no spiritual benefit is acquired.
(Iin # 3 & 5 murid’s has to consult other masters or senior disciples or scholars to guide him through.)