He tweeted a response to an article written by New Statesmen contributor Emad Ahmed which claimed Dawkins ended an interview with him after describing his belief in Islam "pathetic".
The scientist, who is best known to the public for his critiques of religion, wrote that, rather than walking away because of the journalist's religion, it was his insistence that Muhammad rode a winged horse as part of a miracle journey which prompted him to walk away.
I left when he said Muhammad rode a winged horse. A non-timewasting journalist needs at least SOME grasp of reality. https://t.co/yEnaebyomI— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) December 27, 2015
Ahmed wrote in the New Statesmen: "I was genuinely stunned when he decided to angrily walk away from our scheduled interview after I confirmed my beliefs in the revelations of the Islamic faith, calling my views 'pathetic'."
Debate continues around the interpretation of Muhammed's ascension and whether it came via a four-legged animal during the Isra and Miraj - a night journey he is said to have taken in 621.
Nonetheless, for Dawkins, belief in such a experience has no basis in reality.
Ridiculing belief in a winged horse is not "bigotry", not "Islamophobia", not "racism". It's sober, decent, gentle, scientific realism.— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) December 27, 2015
If you believe you're Napoleon or a poached egg, you're in an asylum. If you believe in winged horses you're a New Statesman journalist.— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) December 27, 2015
Unsurprisingly, there's been swift reaction to his comments online.
Dawkins has lost the plot. Unfortunately. https://t.co/5p5oe7eujW— Chris F (@DrCFloyd) December 27, 2015
Some agreed with Dawkins, however.
@RichardDawkins If people believe in the literal truth of a winged horse probably a good idea to keep it to themselves.— Alex Talbot (@alextalbot116) December 27, 2015
@RichardDawkins Never expected much from NS but articles damning adults as bigots for walking away from conversations about flying horses?— Alaa al-Ameri (@AlaaAmeris) December 27, 2015
@RichardDawkins "Yet I sat down to have a sensible discussion..." How can you do that when you blindly assume winged horses are a thing?— Jan Vansteenlandt (@coreation) December 27, 2015
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