Persian carpets and Story telling

Naqqali (which is a dramatic performance) has long played an important role in Iranian society, from the courts to the villages. The performer - the Naqqal or Pir/Morshed recounts stories in verse or prose accompanied by gestures and movements, and sometimes instrumental music and painted scrolls, Pardeh (sometimes even carpets). Both entertainers and bearers of Persian literature (mostly Shahnameh of Ferdowsi) and culture, Naqqals need to be acquainted with local cultural expressions, languages and dialects and traditional music.

Naqqali requires considerable talent, a retentive memory and the ability to improvise with skill to captivate an audience and usually these performances take place in tea houses, Heritage sites like Caravansaries or in streets on special occasions. Persian carpets are the visual stories of a culture, tribe, village, city, the family history of the weaver or current feelings of the weaver. In the same expressive way as the Naqqali transforms the lyrics and music and acting, carpets do this through patterns, colours and feelings.

What make this subject interesting is that the human brain is not a logic processor but rather a story processor. That is why the only books that is well kept during the history of man, and as widespread as the whole world, are the books about stories and the power of the stories in it, like for instance the bible or the shahnameh of Ferdowshi. These masters or storytellers have found a medium to connect to the reader's subconscious. This is similar to the hidden stories on any Persian carpet. The purpose of the carpets and their stories is not to tell you how to see them or how to think. They are not about the answers, but they give you questions to think upon rather. In this case, the weaver, like the story masters, are not filled with answers but they want to take you to deeper questions, that activates the subconscious of the listener or observer in such a way that it will transform the carpet into their own ideas and experiences. Since the carpet is an emotionally charged object it can release hormones in the brain, like dopamine, which makes the observer calmer and their ability to remember increases. Since the observer is making memories of the patterns and colours of any rug, it will lead to information processing which activates most of the brain, like the sensory cortex and frontol cortex, which make the brain of the observer healthier and the quality increases in the balance of the brain, when they encounter similar patterns and colours in the other carpets of the same group.

They said if you want to change the world, you need to change yourself and that starts with changing the stories of yourself. In this case, the carpets telling the stories are constantly changing our world.