I would like to answer the charge that atheists necessarily have faith in their non-faith. Firstly, we all begin as atheists. What I mean by that is simple. No child, no matter how profound their parents' faith may be, is born believing in a god or adhering to a religion. That is a concept children are taught. One could I suppose say that children are agnostics, but that makes no sense to me, personally, simply because the entire concept of theism requires that someone teach that specific concept.
Secondly faith is not something that I lack, rather it is something you possess that I do not. I am not rejecting something essential to being a human being, I am merely choosing not to add another belief onto my personal ethical framework.
When I first realised I did not believe I did feel as if I were rejecting something- rejecting the very narrow confines of my parents' specific sect, rejecting a role in society that demanded I as a female be forever inferior. However, as I grew older I realised that it was as simple to me as choosing not to believe in Vishna, or the Morrigan, or Mithras, or Ameratseru, or Loki. The belief system that provides my parents such comfort simply does not suit me. And because I think, given all the information I have acquired that the idea of a god is so unlikely it approaches impossibility I suppose you could call me an atheist.
I would not be an atheist if people did not ask me about my religious leanings- it would be like telling people I do not see X-rays, or that I don't run at supersonic speeds. The absence of belief in something is simply that. It is, I feel, more that indifference to the question of religion that makes me an atheist. It is not that I do not know, it is that I do not care. So the question of belief honestly never occurs to me unless someone brings it up.
I think that having to choose a term that unites so many people of such widely disparate viewpoints is what causes many problems about the term 'atheist'. While it is possible to generalise very loosely about what a Christian might or might not believe it is not possible to do the same for a group of people only connected by a non-belief.
Additionally, I find the world a place of wonder without a god. Every molecule in my body was once part of a star. There are miracles everywhere that I can see and touch and taste, like apple blossoms and my own hands and the taste of chocolate. Like the sight of a plane lifting off the tarmac. I can still be moved to tears by the sight of snow, simply because it is beautiful. I do not lack wonder at the beauty and majesty of the world simply because I do not believe it was planned to be beautiful and majestic.