From Greta Christina. She lays it out pretty simply and straightforward.
"As an atheist, I have some really good answers for why people believe in God even though he doesn't exist. The human mind is prone to numerous cognitive errors -- and many of those cognitive errors make people susceptible to religion. We tend to see intention, even where no intention exists. We tend to see patterns, even where no pattern exists. We give excessive weight to personal emotional experience, and aren't good at applying critical thought to those experiences. We don't have a good intuitive understanding of probability, and tend to think events are more improbable than they really are. We tend to believe what authority figures tell us. We tend to believe what we're taught as children. We tend to believe what people we know and trust tell us. We're reluctant to question the things that everyone else in our social group believes. Etc., etc., etc. People believe all sort of things that aren't true... and from an atheist/ materialist viewpoint, that makes perfect sense. Atheism is not even a little inconsistent with the belief in gods who don't exist.
But the belief in God is very much inconsistent with the existence of atheists. I have yet to see a religious believer give a good answer for why God exists -- but not everyone experiences him or believes in him. I have yet to see a good answer for why God bestows the experience of his existence (however inconsistently and contradictorily) onto some people -- but not onto others. I have yet to see a good answer for why God is all-powerful and all-knowing and all-good -- or even anything close to all-powerful and all-knowing and all-good -- and still isn't perceived by everybody.
Does anybody have one?
(And if you say "Mysterious ways," I'm going to scream.)"