As composers we have one very important job: to create music that speaks to us, our experiences, and our musical language.
There’s so much music in the world that it is literally impossible to hear, let alone study, all of it. The musical traditions of western Europe are more than enough to devote a lifetime of study to, and some composers are more than happy to do that; however, growth happens best when our horizons are broadened. Immersing oneself in the music of an unfamiliar culture is more than just listening for new sounds, it’s also honoring the fact that music is universal to the human experience. There’s not a “right” way and a “wrong” way in music, just one way and other ways.
When we allow the music of many cultures to influence our compositional style we are opening ourselves up to possibilities beyond what we would be able to achieve normally.