Here's a post from several days ago that I've been meaning to mention. It concludes:
The study of a multitude of schools can only be philosophical if it is done in light of the principles known to a wise man. Absent this, it destroys the clarity of the mind and leads to intellectual vice.Yes indeed.
Philosophy is not a cafeteria because truth is not a matter of taste. It doesn't matter whether I like how it tastes or smells; the question must be: is it true? But when we study something apart from a commitment to an analysis along these lines, it becomes more difficult to think clearly ourselves, and it can lead to the false conclusion that one's philosophy is just a matter of preference: "if all these smart guys disagree, then truth so-called is really subjective."
Maybe that's more simplistic (it probably is) than what A Thomist intends. But we lesser lights must make what small advances we can :-)