Mike, I asked you a number of questions back in my post #44 that you never answered. Rather than questioning Dan's answers to me why not just answer me directly?
Al, to a reasonable degree I've answered those questions in a few other threads, more than once. The how's and why's with diagrams and explanations. If I'd never discussed it, I would have given it a shot again, but I feel like I've given it some fairly good coverage in "Baseline Skillset" and other threads.
In terms of doing something automatically without thinking, we all learn to do many things like that. Driving, swimming, taking falls, etc. "Mushin" doesn't mean a lot more than that, in reality. It's why Sunadomari, Shioda, and others show that the critical moment is when Uke touches, grabs, attacks... your ki should mesh at that moment, technique or not. Shioda has a tape/dvd that shows a lot of emphasis on that one aspect, but I can't think of the exact name of the tape at the moment. When you touch someone you "feel" their holes and you combine with their forces automatically so that they go into a hole. Then you do a technique or you bounce them away or whatever. That's "aiki". Techniques are not important; only aiki is.