Javanese is the largest ethnic group in Indonesia. Besides living in Central Java, East Java and Yogyakarta, they are also scattered in various parts of the country, such as West Java, Jakarta, Banten, Lampung, and West Sumatra, and it is estimated that 41.7 percent of the population of the nation of Indonesia are Javanese people. Besides custom-motivation such as wandering, their immigration is also based on economic factors-political, such as the expansion of the kingdom of Mataram and the Dutch colonial government's transmigration policy.
Not only spread in the country, a large of Javanese community today also remains in Suriname, New Caledonia, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Netherlands. In those countries, the history was the Dutch Colonial Government mobilized Javanese as labor.
Though inherited cultural life that is tenacious, but on the other hand, the Javanese have a philosophy of life "nrimo pandum ing" or attitude of resigned to the way of life ordained by God. This is in line with the well-known phrase among the Javanese "urip ngoyo ora", which means that in life do not be too ambitious. That life attitude makes Javanese people well known with a simple life.
Javanese people mostly communicate in the Java Language. Even many of those who live overseas are still frequent communicating in Java language, especially with one another. The Javanese are well known in its high social solidarity and loyalty to customs and traditions, including the language. The Principles of Java language “undhak-undhuk” meaning obeying the rules, regarding the use of language, in relation to the social role of the speakers, for example, father to son, or vice versa, teens to their peers, and so forth.
Most Javanese is Muslim. They are usually categorized as Muslim Student (santri) and abangan Islam or Islam that is mixed with various tradition. The dominance of Muslims among the Javanese is inseparable from the role of the leading Islamic propagator, namely Walisongo, whom almost all of them spread syi'ar (mission) in Java. Besides Islam, the Javanese also embraces Protestant, Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist, and some who cling to the Javanese tradition (kejawen), which is typical Javanese animism, which mainly was influenced by the Hindu-Buddhist tradition.