Re: philosophical or practical martial art?
I like what Yannis said to your previous question, David. This time I will answer your current question also with - in my opinion, no. When it comes to Aikido specifically, I do not believe that you can separate the martial and the philosophical and still call it Aikido.
Mary, I understand that you might not want to use the term "spiritual" to describe your practice. Personally, for me, Aikido is absolutely a spiritual practice. It challenges me deeply on every level of my being, in such a profound and rigorous way that I would have to call it a spiritual practice or journey.