I see techniques as training grounds for 'the philosophy that makes Aiki a do'. From what I've learned some of the basic rules are to connect with the uke and blend with his attack at the exact same speed fluently. Doing this with a more or less empty mind will make the techniques work more smoothly. And the techniques can excercize one's ability to perform techniques this way. You can get some portions of 'the philosophy that makes Aiki a do' from O'Sensei's quotes and other books and then expirement by applying them to your Aikido. Although it would also be good to learn from a dojo that teaches the philosophy.
I think we could we could acquire the right insight for continued training in Aikido, O'Sensei didn't have his own wisdom before he acquired it. People might have to live a similar life as O'Sensei to discover Aikido(or invent).