I was raised a Christian, I did the Sunday School thing from the ages of four to fifteen. I was an altar boy until I was 16. I read any number of religious stories, and was totally awed. Often I read by flashlight under the covers until 2 and 3 am. Two books stand out in my memory.
At thirteen I read "The Robe" by Lloyd C. Douglass and it brought me to tears. Jesus and God were so amazing for their positive impact on human happiness and security. Still, the biblical and Sunday-go-to-Meetin' stuff smelled of B.S. Then I read "The Source" by Roland Michener. I was bed ridden by mononucleosis at the time, so I read it in about two days. My abstract thinking was already getting pretty good (because reading makes a world of difference in that respect), and I saw the implications for religion.
As a result, I became a Deist of sorts, and saw that the Son of God story was an overblown legend. A story promoted by the greatest orator of the early centuries A.D., St. Paul. The story was written and re-written by early medieval men who thought writing itself was primarily an exalted duty to God. No doubt St.Paul did a lot of the rewriting, to make it more and more captivating for his audiences.
Did the these re-writers read and think? No. They were more interested in the wealth their sheeple could provide.
They embellished the stories a little here and a little there, so it would 'go over' better and better. The illiterates will would accept the authority of the 'educated' and 'literate' men, and believe the embellishments.
It was not until I was in my thirties that I fully grasped that religion, and the morality it espouses, is the biggest con ever perpetrated on the minds of Man. Priests and Witch Doctors are all the same... Liars, Liars, Pants all Fires!
Getting rid of God was very emotional for me. For some months I felt torn in half. Then one sunny morning, walking my dog across fields sparkling with dew, I was still pondering what a Universe without God meant, and I finally understood! I felt a weight lift off me. The Universe and everything in it was mine to explore, and my life was mine to make happy. I imagine I had the same sense of Joy that those who are born again experience, except I knew I was being intellectually honest.
No longer was there any 'super thing' tallying my pros and cons. Since then I have been an enormously more moral and honest person. Why? Pride! Pride as respect and caring for my own character, the same way a craftsman takes prideful care to produce an excellent end result. Pride, in the religious morality is one of the worst sins. Morality by fear & or obedience is a subtle hell, sharply contrasting with the rational pursuit of happiness and self valuing.
If you actually understood Christianity, you would not be a Christian. You too would be an atheist, and be happier for it.
God, and the supernatural cannot possibly exist.