I am an atheist by necessity, only because religious superstition exists in the world.
I would be delighted if, upon one happy day in the future, that priority sank to the level of historical novelty and I could devote my energies exclusively to more pleasant and constructive and progressive pursuits that do not resemble the burdensome toils of janitorial maintenance.
Helping to clear the world of the pestilence of religious tyranny is a duty I do not shirk and I am proud of what modest help I can bring to the effort. I remain ever vigilant to find ways of increasing the effectiveness of my activism, but I would gladly part with the “atheist” identification if religion and superstition disappeared and rationality and critical thinking became the default attitude in the world.
As long as superstition enslaves people and makes life miserable if not unbearable, I must be an atheist, but I’d much rather be, simply, an artist and educator, and be able to build upon the foundation of knowledge already established, introducing the marvels of natural reality to young people and those who sincerely value their curiosity of the real world without having to give my time to religion for ANYTHING, including the reason for being an “atheist”.
Unfortunately, we don’t yet live in such a world (far from it) but my idealism doesn’t trump my practical realism either, and so I must be an “atheist”. So be it. Let the conflict roil on and evolve inevitably into one or another outcome.
Meanwhile, I will continue to remain optimistic for the prospect of a superstition-free world as long as I see light on the horizon and can cherish an entirely HUMAN hope for a better future, virtues which the grubby, greedy hands of religious authority cannot take from me, let alone assume credit for.