Even if an afterlife were a natural fact, it would not mean that human personality would endure for ever. If Darwinism is true, it is hard to see how such a thing could be possible. If there is no insuperable barrier between human minds and the minds of other animals, there seems no reason why the after-world should be populated only by humans.
But if other animals also pass over into the after-world at death, do they survive as disembodied minds or do they acquire new bodies? Either way, was the after-world empty until life evolved and death appeared?
None of these questions can be answered, and in truth Darwinism cannot be reconciled with any idea of a post-mortem world. In Darwin's scheme of things species are not fixed or everlasting; their boundaries are blurred and shifting. How then could only one species go on to a world beyond the grave?
Victorian seekers after evidence of survival often imagined evolution continuing into the after-world. But they always did so in a way that distorted Darwin's vision, injecting into evolution ideas of purpose and progress for which it has no place.