On Kant's view, the feeling of respect is the mark of moral agency, and is peculiar to us, animals endowed with reason. Unlike any other feeling, respect originates in the contemplation of the moral law, that is, the idea of lawful activity. This idea works as a constraint on our deliberation by discounting the pretenses of our natural desires and demoting our selfish maxims. We experience its workings in the guise of respect. Respect shows that from the agent's subjective perspective, morality is the experience of being bound and necessitated, but also of being free and emancipated from inclinations.
Respect is a feeling that is generated by the agent's reflection on the nature of her own agency. It is not directed to anybody in particular, but to the very idea of rational agency, which is characterized by self-mastery and self-legislation. Contrary to animals, we do not derive our ends from nature, but we are capable of setting ends of our own, by exercising practical reason, that is, by engaging in the activity of law making.