I however have no qualms of sticking the thing into "Full Auto" on occasion and under good conditions. It's absolutely silly for some to suggest doing so somehow makes you lesser of a photographer!
Wow, Ralph. That's an impassioned response. It provoked me to go back and read all of the responses in this thread again.
What I saw was a pretty balanced discussion from folk who stated what modes they like to use and why. I didn't see anyone belittle anyone else. There was even more helpful discussion of what each of the modes do or don't do. I think that we can all agree that we are all on a photographic learning path, picking up lessons from our own technical use or from others here on this forum.
Personally, I use M most of the time, but that's how I started many years ago since there was no auto anything back then. I also use Av fairly frequently and Tv more rarely. Heck, I even shoot with my iPhone 5 sometimes.
I think using any mode that suits what you're photographing is fine with me. My goal as a photographer is to improve my imaging and learn something new every time I shoot. So for me, as long as I am aware of what the limitations are to whatever mode (auto or manual) that I am using, I can compensate for those using my own personal "automatic" brain. That's why I asked about auto ISO, a tool that I have not used before.
However, and also for me, I mainly shoot M because it makes it much easier for me to ETTR, remember 12% neutral (thanks, Elie), and use other new tools specific to DSLRs that I have learned here.
Since I became converted to Magic Lantern I have become a terrible shill for them, so I'll ask for your indulgence before hand...
...So yeh, I use automation, but it is automation that does what I want it to do.
Thanks again Elie for helping teach this old dog new tricks. I'm still waiting for the stable ML for the 6D... or maybe I missed that release.