"I have learned not to think little of any one's belief, no matter how strange it may be. I have tried to keep an open mind." (Chapter 14)
Van Helsing identifies the one quality that has enabled him to gain the wisdom to counter the Count's evil: an open mind. It is the one quality that men such as Harker and Seward, whose narrowly rational viewpoint makes them deny the Count's alternative reality, manifestly lack. This lack, in turn, makes them vulnerable to the Count's attacks, since they cannot effectively oppose what they do not believe exists.
"You are clever man, friend John; you reason well, and your wit is bold; but you are too prejudiced. You do not let your eyes see nor your ears hear, and that which is outside your daily life is not of account to you. Ah, it is the fault of our science that it wants to explain all; and if it explain not, then it says there is nothing to explain."
Van Helsing laments the narrow and prejudiced vision of Seward, the rational man of science who understands nothing about the ultimate cause of Lucy's death and the Un-dead Lucy's preying upon children. If Seward has no "data," he is unable to draw any conclusion and therefore unable to act. He does not believe in vampires because there is no proof, so he is vulnerable to the Count's evil. Van Helsing, in contrast, knows this territory because he has kept an open mind and has drawn upon a broad base of knowledge, from modern science to ancient lore.
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