I only began reading this thread a short time ago, but I recall someone posing the question about whether or not (and I am paraphrasing here) meditation had a place along side of Aikido. AikiTom makes a good point about Aikido not being quite like meditation. But I disagree. Whether or not O-sensei hated Zen to me is irrelevant. Aikido is meditation.
All throughout history there have been people, such as the Whirling Dervishes who have done what I like to call "active meditations". Just because you are moving doesn't mean you can't be aware.
I come to Aikido having been a meditator for over 21 years and I can tell you from experience that you *can* be in meditation while moving through all the 10,000 movements we do in our lives.
To me, any action done with awareness becomes meditation.So, I say, carrot or no carrot, Aikido can be your meditation
As it was said earlier, it depends on the perspective of the person...
Would love to hear from you have also been meditating since before your days of Aikido...