As many bible readers know, “Babylon” Babylonian civilization is mentioned frequently in the bible, almost always in an unfavorable way.
There is a “Babylonian Captivity” where the Hebrews are kept in Babylon (Northern Iraq?) for a long period of time, and there is some terrible beast called the “Whore of Babylon” which will come during the apocolypse. Some Protestant pastors on the internet talk about some unique force of evil called “Mystery Babylon.”
Im sure there are plenty more examples of negative Babylon imagery.
There is definitely the sense in scripture that Babylon was a uniquely sinful and ungodly society. Was there any truth or basis to this premise, or was it just colored by the Hebrews being poorly treated by them for so long?
I’ve read a bit about ancient Babylon and can see why the Hebrews might come to that conclusion. It seems there pretty much zero sexual taboos, and the names of many demons in the new testament (beelzebub, asomodeus, pazuzu, etc.) were originally babylonian/mesoptamian gods.
All that aside, ancient Bablyon seems to have had a lot going for it: advanced philosophy,mathematics and literature (the epic of gilgamesh is quite interesting.)
Im not so sure they were that bad by the standards of ancient civilizations. Certainly not compared with civilizations like the Roman Empire or the Aztecs.