chapter  1
Loving the Neighbor: On Self-Love
Pages 33

The two biblical commandments in Leviticus to love the neighbor and to love the stranger seem to ground that love of the other in a more original, basic, or given love of the self. This chapter will explore the ways that three modern Jewish philosophers of relation, Franz Rosenzweig, Martin Buber, and Emmanuel Levinas, address these commandments, since for them, love of the other, and not self-love, grounds the self-at least the authentic self-and in this sense is primary, basic, or original. The treatment begins with a discussion of rabbinic glosses on the meaning of these commandments. The focus then shifts to the disagreement concerning narcissism and self-other relations between Freud and some post-Freudian psychoanalytic theorists, which mirrors the opposing standpoints of the Rabbis and the three Jewish philosophers. It concludes with brief suggestions concerning the significance of these two models of love in terms of an array of disciplines and theories.