Just a quick thought of the immediate spiritual enhancements for a very new aikidoka.
humbling of pride.........finding that all the skills and eye to hand coordination developed by other arts/sports doesn't matter much on the mat. IE: indipendant activity of hands and body...fencing, sca heavy sword fighting, etc.
uniting the center with the "fringes"
...my hands and arms is just the opposite of all previous muscle group training I have ever done.
tough to get the hang of it you know?
calming of mind and flowing of creativity when the lessons go well............new songs on the old guitar, and just general clearer thought from the excercise I suppose, as well as "higher ideals" of harmony..