The real Self is the Truth that is Brahman.
It may take many life-times; it may be very difficult and long. But the effort has to start right now.
The more you postpone it, the life-cycle will get more extended. Suppose we don’t start this ascent of the spiritual ladder now.
What do you think will happen? We will be continuing to commit further sinful activities and these will accumulate more and more dirt and trash in the mind.
More life-times have to be spent. That is why I said the effort has to start rightaway, in order to escape from this life-cycle.
I said just now ‘escape from this life-cycle’; I also said ‘efforts have to be done’. These two together constitute the definition of SAdhanA.
Instead of doing certain things in a haphazard fashion as and when the mood or the occasion arises, those great ancestors of ours who have reached the goal have prescribed for us specific methodologies for us.
To walk that path is what is called SAdhanA.