Across the valley from the Norlha Atelier stands the highest peak in Ritoma, the Amney Tongra. Shaped in the hump of a crouching animal, it is the abode of a local deity whose name it bears. The hill that stands behind the workshop is known as the place where Amnye Tongra keeps his horses. It is said that he is very particular as to the character of those inhabiting what he considers his turf and that only those of pure intention, dedicated to the welfare of others will be allowed to remain there.
Amnye Tondra is one of four sacred peaks in Ritoma, the others being Amnye Northa, Amnye Huarga, and Amnye Danyi, the latter being the conical hill that stands out of its near perfect symmetry. Each of these are the abode of a local deity, recognized and revered for centuries before Buddhism was established in the region. Later, they were allendorsed by various lamas and absorbed into Buddhist practice.
Peoplein Ritoma are associated by clans, which in turn hold allegiance to one of the local deities.Amnye Tondra, Ritoma’s most important local deity and revered by all the clans, is associated with the largest, the Dzopa, which gathers more than one hundred families.Duringits Laptse, the ceremony during which clan members demonstrate their allegiance and seek the deities’protection by making offerings, clans from all over Zorge come to pay homage in a yearly celebration. The smaller clans have their own laptses, which take place mostly in summer.