What makes Aikido aikido (to you)?
What makes it NOT aikido (to you)?
Wonderfully fundamental questions
My former teacher Ichimura sensei told me that one should read the name of a martial art backways, to understand it. For example, karatedo would be do-te-kara, that is "the way through the hand to emptiness". Judo would be "the way to softness", and so on.
makes "the way through ki to joining/harmony".
Aikido is the way in which to use our ki to join. The ki of uke as well as tori. The goal is joining, agreeing, making peace if you like.
So, in the practice, the techniques, the solutions, the strife: when joining is not the goal, then it is not aikido.
Putting it very simply: having fun together, everybody enjoying it