I call myself an atheist. I use this term, purposely. It tells my christian friends that I do not believe in their god. This has been true since I was around 15 or 16. I do think that an intelligence could exist in the universe but so far I have not seen or heard of any evidence of such a being. So until then I am a true atheist.
I started reading about mythology in high school. Roman and Greek mythologies were the first as these were more well known to me. These gods were reflections of humanity even to extremes. Then I found a book on the Norse myths. These gods were unlike anything I had read before. While the Norse gods were also reflections of their worshipers I found them vastly different and darker than the Roman or Greek gods. They were also very cool.
These mythologies got me to thinking. These people believed their gods were real just like those people at my church. I think you see my point.