Thanks for your replies, folks. I´d like to answer every post, if it weren´t too timeconsuming.
But I´ll try to do it in summary.
Some advice and conclusions I found quite weighty:
1) Do not worry or lament about the general condition of Aikido. Keep on training for your self. That is where you can achieve something.
(Quite wise, if everybody does so, there is no reason to worry about the condition of Aikido)
Think I´ll take that to heart.
2) Although barely trained, hitting can be a part of self-defence within Aikido. Leads to the question, how to hit and for which purpose. There are many possibilities and a nice field for argue, too. What kind of stikes should be considered "allowed" in the philosophy of Aikido: Should one hit to stop the attacker physically (make him catch for breath, or even make him unconcious), or should one only make him move in a wanted way, or should one just feint without touching him ?
3) The ability to strike is important for any Aikidoka, and it´s neglected. I´d like to remark, that im my opinion one needs to have that ability even if you do not want to use it. If you do a feint, it´s got to be like it could crush the target. Otherwise the feint will not work, or only the first or second time.
4) Look around, other styles, other martial arts. (Another remark: One´s got to have a firm base before that in order not to be confused)
5) And of course technique should become part of oneself, to be able to apply it spontaneously without thinking about it. ( I´ve been preaching that in my Zen&Aikido Seminars anyway )
Andrew, I believe I can judge b e c a u s e I have sometimes lacking confidence in my techniques.
Jun, nice quotation. Who is your teacher? (I mean, what´s his name)
Erik, you´ve been speaking out of my heart.
Graham, thanks for the list.