Originally Halloween was a Pagan celebration called Samhain. It was the Celtic New year the final of 3 harvest festivals, and a time when people believed the veil between this world and the world of the dead was thinnest.It was time to prepare for the long dark days ahead and to honor ancestors and spirits. The Christian Church needed to replace these celebrations (they learned early on that "banning" old holiday's really didn't work because ppl would continue to celebrate in secret... because... well let's face it who doesn't love to party?.) So they created All Hallows Day (all Saint's Day) on Nov 1st. This was supposed to be a day of prayer and reflection, honoring the Saints. The day and night before was dedicated to honoring loved ones who had passed away and was called All Hallows Eve .. in peasant vernacular Hallow e'en or Halloween. However people loved their Samhain traditions and so most of them were kept. Trick or Treating Jack-o-lanterns, dressing up scary (to scare away evil spirits) and many other modern traditions are directly descended from the old ways.
What Halloween means and it's origins are two completely different things. To believe to be a time for us to let our guards down just a little, come together as an entire community, and have a little fun. Can people take it too far, of course just as people take celebrating New Years too far. Think about it what other holiday promotes you going to a strangers house. This builds community bonds. Some people like to be scared, it's not that anyone is truly believing they are scaring away evil spirits. Finally, we, even as adults, like to pretend. It is this time we can actually be superman and it be okay. God bless