For sure, understanding where someone is coming from is key to gaining some respect and understanding of their arguments, necessary for constructive dialog.
My life path led from a mildly religious childhood at the age of ten, through a thirty six year excursion into committed atheism. That ended ten years ago and I now strongly believe there is good reason that a body of information from all religions collectively, pre-dating our ability to determine their true origins, and yet offering us something that appears to be a valid “survival guide” on how we should live, exists.
I don’t believe this gets in the way of science in any way at all. In fact, it is a driver to establish the truth. I believe the way we will arrive at that truth is by scientific endeavour. But I think there is a risk that the same endeavour could lead to disaster if the “survival guide” is simply ignored, or abused.
We have it in our power to create our own heaven or hell.
Which direction do we seem to be going in?