In world culture, the rainbow has a double meaning. For some peoples it is a purely positive phenomenon (a stairway to heaven, a path to paradise), while for others it is personified with an evil being that devours people’s souls. In Kazakh culture, the rainbow is associated with a celestial deity in the form of an old woman (kempir) grazing colourful sheep. In folk culture, the term kempirqosaq refers not only to a type of pattern, but also to a decorated kümbez mausoleum/mazar. Among some Turkic peoples, the arches of the rainbow are associated with the arch – the prototype of the mihrab (for example, on prayer rugs).

Structurally, the ornament itself consists of bands of different colours, symbolising the following: Blue is the colour of the sky, white is the colour of truth, joy; yellow is the colour of wisdom, reason and sorrow; green is the colour of spring and youth. This ornamental motif is used to decorate alasha, qorzhyns, baskurs and other textiles, symbolising the bright colours of life, wealth, prosperity and so on.