"He who follows properly the spiritual pathway begins to see in himself more and more sins, until finally he sees himself completely immersed in sin. Through his spiritual eyes he perceives his leprous soul. He feels with his whole heart that he is dirt and filth, that he is unworthy even to call out the name of God. Like the publican, unable to raise his eyes, he cries out with pain of heart: 'God have mercy on me the sinner.' When a person maintains his soul in such a spiritual state for a long time, he finally emerges from it absolved, like the publican."
Source: Abbot Nikon: Letters to Spiritual Children.
Contributed by: boznamedsoo