What makes Aikido aikido (to you)?
What makes it NOT aikido (to you)?
I'm not sure what, exactly, you are asking here.
But, to me, it's like asking:
How is a spoon a spoon?
How is a spoon not a spoon?
And, I guess I'd answer it by saying that a spoon is only a spoon if you use it as such and that the word "spoon" is not the thing "spoon."
Aikido is Aikido as long as it IS Aikido. The same could be said for anything and everything in the world. But "Aikido" is not Aikido. Aikido (and everything else, ever) just IS. There is no "Aikido." There just...is.
Catch my drift?