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Workshop: AI meets Moral Philosophy and Moral Psychology: An Interdisciplinary Dialogue about Computational Ethics

#39: Western, Religious or Spiritual: An Evaluation of Moral Justification in Large Language Models

Eyup E. Kucuk · Muhammed Koçyiğit

Keywords: [ Large language models ] [ moral philosophy ] [ Moral Evaluation ]

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Fri 15 Dec 12:50 p.m. PST — 1:50 p.m. PST


The increasing success of Large Language Models (LLMs) in variety of tasks lead to their widespread use in our lives which necessitates the examination of these models from different perspectives. The alignment of these models to human values is an essential concern in order to establish trust that we have safe and responsible systems. In this paper, we aim to find out which values and principles are embedded in LLMs in the process of moral justification. For this purpose, we come up with three different moral perspective categories: Western tradition perspective (WT), Abrahamic tradition perspective (AT), and Spiritualist/Mystic tradition perspective (SMT). In two different experiment settings, we asked models to choose principles from the three for suggesting a moral action and evaluating the moral permissibility of an action if one tries to justify an action on these categories, respectively. Our experiments indicate that tested LLMs favors the Western tradition moral perspective over others. Additionally, we observe that there potentially exists an \textit{over-alignment} towards religious values represented in the Abrahamic Tradition, which causes models to fail to recognize an action is immoral if it is presented as a "religious-action". We believe that these results are essential in order to direct our attention in future efforts.

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