With respect, you do seem to be making hard work of a simple question.
I took Mary's post as no more than a light hearted `question`, that is why I simply answered " Self-Defence" . If anyone asks me " what is Aikido ? " I keep it simples - that is my basic answer, followed by an invitation to visit the dojo and watch a class.
Co-author `Positive Aikido`
I hope you are well.
By chance, this was the name (in Japanese) that we chose for an aikido course in the culture centre where I instruct. We have two courses and we could not use the same name for both, so we chose 護身術, or goshinjutsu, which in the dictionary is given as the art of self-defence.