Mr. G wrote:
based on scriptural evidence that he is teaching adharma.
Yes. How else would one judge whether a teaching is Buddhist or not? It only makes sense to reference the sutras.
There's no scriptural support for Batchelor's views.
This seems to be the main diverging point between camps...
Some people want assurance, other people are more inclined to ask questions and allow for the suspension of said assurance.
Requiring scriptural support doesn't obviate the need for questioning. The whole value of detailed questioning and investigation is that it allows the Buddha's contentions about reality to become experiential, which is the only time they can have any effect on you. Lip service to sutras doesn't get you enlightened.
The point though, is this: the Buddha made specific contentions about reality. He also said that the way to liberation was for you to experience the truth of those yourself, and that if you did so, you would be released from suffering. He specifically encouraged engagement with these contentions, and specifically encouraged questioning, not because he was worried about being perceived as authoritarian or because he was a proto-libertarian, but because even the Buddha is powerless to enlighten you - your enlightenment is experiential. Questioning, engagement and investigation, tested in meditation, are the path to personal experience.
And for engagement to be genuinely honest, you're going to be wrestling with the fact that, up front, you probably don't agree with many or all of them. That's not a problem. It's the path, and it's unavoidable. IF you accept that the Buddhism leads to enlightenment, AND you accept that you're not enlightened, THEN you accept that the view of Buddhism is not yours, at the core level where views shape the world. Since you don't actually have those views, you'll be wracked with doubt of varying degrees as you go, until you're not wracked with doubt (because you have developed conviction based on experience) or you're not a practitioner.
If your wrestling leads to abandoning the Buddha's contentions, then no matter how virtuous your behavior, you are no longer attempting to realise the truth of the Buddha's claims, because you've excluded them. You might be doing good things and you might be doing interesting things. You are just no longer teaching or practicing Buddhism.
There is nothing wrong with Stephen Batchelor deciding what he can and can't accept. We all have to do that. It's just that past a point, it's no longer an attempt to recreate the Buddha's experience - and therefore, not Buddhism, which while it has lots of social faces, should always be nothing more than recreating the Buddha's experience as your own.