What Does Halloween Represent?

what does halloween really mean

Halloween, the night that the fear is showing its face to us and maybe that is why even though we feel shudder, we still kind of be drawn to it. Maybe it is the night that is reminding us of the reality of this dual life that we are in. We all have our light and dark inside. And you know what, the dark is there to embrace as much as our light. So what does Halloween represent? 

I have a special interest in ancient wisdom from different cultures around the world. I love to see commonalities and make the links that combine the story inside me and for me. Life is an ocean of meaning which can be observed via signs in here and now – the door to eternity. 

To answer what does Halloween represents, let’s try to answer different questions which will guide us to find out what we are looking for. Are you joining me? 

What is a Halloween day?

A Halloween day is a holiday celebrated on the 31st of October each year around the world. The belief is that on the evening of this day, the ghosts of the dead return to the earth. Hence, it’s a special occasion to remember all the saints, martyrs, faithful, and relatives who have departed. People also follow different traditions on Halloween to scare away evil spirits.

Though Halloween once had religious significance, it still has, but all that remains today is to enjoy the evening with different fun activities. Some of the popular activities on Halloween are trick or treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, wearing fancy costumes, going to parties, and so on. 

What is the root meaning of Halloween?

Halloween is also known as Allhalloween, All Hallows’ Eve, and All Saints’ Eve. Earlier it was mainly celebrated in European countries and then spread to America. Now, many countries around the world celebrate Halloween. The day is considered the eve of All Saints’ Day, which is celebrated on the 1st of November. You can read my article on Spanish All Saints’ Day to learn more about the occasion.

Below I have explained more about the root meaning of the Halloween festival:

What does the Halloween word mean?

As I told you earlier, Halloween is also celebrated as the eve of All Saints’ Day. Many people ask me, does Halloween mean holy night? Well, the answer is yes. The root of the word “Halloween” is “Hallow.” It means “Holy.” And the suffix here “een” means evening. So, literally, the word Halloween means Holy evening or night.

What does the Halloween celebration mean?

People celebrate Halloween in different ways. The purpose of the celebration is to scare away the evil spirit and remember those who were faithful.

What does Halloween pumpkin mean?

Halloween pumpkin with scary and spooky faces is one of the Jack-o’-lanterns. People use Jack-o’-lantern or Halloween pumpkins with the belief that they would protect them from evil spirits. However, some people today use them only as Halloween decorations. I am buying some pumpkin lights for Halloween, and you may also get them.

What does Halloween head mean?

Halloweenhead is a popular song by Ryan Adams. I often hear the song during Halloween. The first few lines are:

“Here comes that shit again

I got a Halloween head

Head full of tricks and treats.”

If you have wondered what Halloweenhead means, well, according to the song, it means a head full of tricks and treats.

What do Halloween apples mean?

Halloween apples refer to the popular game apple bobbing, played during Halloween. Most kids and teenagers play this game. In the game, participants try to pick up apples using their mouths from a large tub or basin of water. The relation of Apples with Halloween originated from the festival Samhain. During the festival, Celtics used to offer apples to God as sacrifices.

What does Halloween candy mean?

Trick-or-treating is a popular Halloween tradition. Kids go door to door in the hope of getting candies. Getting Halloween candy means a treat, or if the homeowner refuses to give candy, the kids can play tricks on her. So, my suggestion is to give the kids some Halloween candies and not take the risk of getting tricked. 

What does Halloween spirit mean?

When we say Halloween spirit, we mean how much you are excited or got into the mood for Halloween. The more Halloween activities you do, the more spirit you have. At this moment, when I am looking at my kids, I think their Halloween spirit is pretty high as they are doing a lot of planning on how they will celebrate the special evening.

What does Halloween really mean?

Till now, I have explained the meaning of Halloween based on current tradition and the way we celebrate the day. But what does Halloween really mean to pagans, witches, Wiccans, and in Catholic churches? Below I have tried to cover all the details:

What does Halloween mean to pagans?

Pagans are those in the early fourth century who did not follow any religion. Rather they used to believe that everything around us is natural, even the cycle of birth, life, and death. The modern-day Pagans are often referred to as Wiccans. They often are associated with witchcraft.

However, Pagans and Wiccans celebrate Halloween as its original form Samhain, and in the Pagan calendar, it means a feast of the dead. On this day, Pagans and Wiccans remember and honor their ancestors. 

What does Halloween mean to witches?

Witches also celebrate the pagan holiday Samhain. Unlike Halloween, where people try to scare away spirits, witches call on the spirits of the dead, honor them or talk to spirits on Halloween.

What does Halloween mean in the catholic church?

In the Catholic church, Halloween is the inaugural of the Allhallowtide (Halloween, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls Day). Hence, they prepare to honor the saints on All Saints’ Day.

What does Halloween mean biblically?

The Bible doesn’t refer to Halloween directly as it originated from Celtic cultures. However, according to Bible God instructed us to stay away from evil, and on Halloween, people try to scare away evil spirits. A verse from the bible is:

“But test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” – Thessalonians 5:21-22

What does Halloween mean spiritually?

Halloween is not only about trick-or-treating or decorating jack-o-lanterns. It is a chance to eliminate the negativity from our spiritual selves and accept the cycle of life and death. 

How did Halloween start and why?

Halloween mainly originated from the Celtic festival of Samhain. Samhain is a festival celebrated at the end of the year. Because in ancient times, celts used to celebrate the new year on November 1. Celts are Indo-European tribes, and they lived in countries now known as Ireland and parts of some other neighboring countries. For them, October 31st is the end of the year and harvest season.

Earlier Christians used not to celebrate the day. Later in the sixth century, Pope Gregory I suggested that rather than running away from non-Christians’ religious customs, Christians should adopt them. That’s how Samhain became Halloween in Christianity.

Why do we celebrate Halloween?

There is a belief that during Halloween, the barrier between our world and the world of the dead is fragile. Thus, evil spirits may come into our world and harm us. So, we wear scary costumes, do bonfires and celebrate Halloween to protect ourselves from those evil spirits.

Is Halloween a pagan festival?

At this point, you already should know the answer. Halloween is not a Pagan festival. But the origin of Halloween, which is Samhain, is a festival of Celtic paganism.

Is Halloween considered a religious holiday?

Many people ask, is Halloween a spiritual holiday? Well, instead of a spiritual holiday, Halloween is considered a religious holiday. This is due to its association with All Saints’ Day, which I have discussed throughout the article.


The importance of the spiritual journey is the connection. The rituals are meaningful if you connect. Because if only if you connect you will realize that your heart will transport you in many different realities. 

This connection and these rituals can be done in the middle of the street while you are celebrating Halloween with your kids. Walk around with wonder. Open your heart. Leave judgments and attachments, then the connection will land on your heart easily. 

That is what I am calling living life, as a ritual. May Halloween help you to create this connection in the ocean of meaning. Signs are there, for us to see. 
Below is a Pinterest friendly photo…. so, you can pin it to your Ancient Wisdom Board!

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