What was the final "trigger" that convinced you to become an atheist?
I suppose the final trigger came in 2006. I was going through a really bad year, and I kept praying, and praying, and praying for help...and received no answer. Nothing. And the more I thought about this, the more I realized I just never really ever saw any evidence of an a divine being that cared about my life, was listening, or had any sort of agenda for the world.
How did your decision to become an atheist affect your life?
It wasn't a decision to stop believing. It was simply truth and that turned my outlook. I've become a far more relaxed, open, less judgmental, and confident person since then. I'm happy to be a tiny speck of nothing in the universe that's just going to cease existing one day. I find the idea very soothing. I feel a lot more appreciation and connection to what I have, who's in my life, and the world around me. I'm more assertive and successful now that I rely on myself and not sitting there waiting for a god to "do something."
So my life has changed for the better. It's nice not having to worry about the divine. I never realized how stressful it was until the whole burden of religious trappings was lifted.