Re: Am I turning to the dark side?
One of my instructors once said that when he was training overseas a sensei told him "You are fighting; you will never learn anything!" I often remind myself of this when I find I'm resorting to strength and forcefulness.
As for the "love", I think it is something that can be contemplated on many different levels. It is said that "Budo is love". When one takes it upon themselves to learn a Budo form, they automatically assume a certain responsibilty associated with this. That is to protect the weak, uphold justice, promote peace, etc. I personally do not believe that learning a martial art should be purely a selfish endevour, but rather as a means to benefit others.
Then there is the philosphy of Aikido relating to Universal love and harmony, which is in turn embodied within the physical martial aspect of Aikido. But then I think these ideas stem straight from Budo itself, therefore itsn't strictly confined to Aikido.
At a technical training course I attended a few months ago, "love" was also defined as the respect you have for your opponent. Mostly it related to keeping correct ma-ai and a respectful distance from the very, very beginning so that you are in a somewhat safe and correct position before beginning any movement or technique. We were constantly reminded to "love our enemy" - not in an airy fairy way - but in a practical martial common sense.
You aren't drifting to the darkside!! You have come out and raised these questions for a start which is a fantastic way to start to explore these concepts.