When a woman is considered mature enough, the circle invites her to braid her hair. The braid represents a woman's bond to her village, the Women's Circle, and to her community.
The sacred pool of the Women's Circle is a place of sanctuary and power. Generations of women from the village come to the circle for ritual and fellowship. The strength of all who came before is hewn directly into the stones, and interwoven into the earth.
On Winternight, 7 Aine 998 NE, Egwene al'Vere joins the Women's Circle. She has her hair braided, and is formally welcomed by the Wisdom, Nynaeve al'Meara, who explains the importance of the ritual to their community. When the braiding is done, Nynaeve pushes Egwene off the cliffside into the rapids below, which appear to slow before Egwene reaches the riverbank.
Egwene returns to the Winespring Inn later in the day, and the people of the village applaud the new member of the Women's Circle. In the evening, she is apprehensive to talk to Rand about her experience, noting that she is not supposed to tell him, but eventually says that it went well for her.
This braid will remind you that you are a part of us and we a part of you. To be a woman is to be always alone and never alone. So when the Dark surrounds you and you see no Light, feel this braid and know that we all stood before you. We all stand with you. As Wisdom of the Two Rivers, it's my honor to welcome you to the Women's Circle.Nynaeve to Egwene.
Changes from the book series
The Women's Circle is an adaptation of the (book spoilers!) from the book series.