Swami Vivekananda was fully aware that a high spiritual state cannot be got for the mere asking. It can be got for the mere asking, if one is intense enough in one's yearning for the realization of that state. People are not generally earnest enough in their spiritual pursuits; steady, persevering spiritual practice and discipline are necessary. That means struggle. Struggle is the price one has to pay for success in any endeavour. That is even more true in the field of religion. So he said that one has to pass through the hell of spiritual struggle in order to reach the heaven of peace. The soul has to wrestle and wrestle, and all of a sudden he gets the realization. Then he laughs at the idea that he had to struggle so much for the knowledge which was his own and within himself.
'Mind you,' Swami Vivekananda said, 'the great benefit in this life is struggle. It is through that we pass. If there is any road to Heaven, it is through Hell. Through Hell to Heaven is always the way. When the soul has wrestled with circumstances and has met death, a thousand times death on the way but nothing daunted has struggled forward again and again and yet again then the soul comes out as a giant and laughs at the ideal he has been struggling for, because he finds how much greater is he than the ideal. I am the end, my own Self, and nothing else, for what is there to compare with my own Self? ' Swami Vivekananda himself was an example of how earnest and intense one can be in search of the knowledge of the Self.
There are many methods of reaching the goal of spiritual life. Swami Vivekananda simplified them into four divisions. According to him: 'Each soul is potentially divine. The goal is to manifest this divinity within, by controlling nature, external and internal. Do this either by work, or worship, or psychic control, or philosophy, by one, or more, or all of these and be free.'