The universe was around before there was anything to perceive it.
In that sense, awareness, especially in the form of a human, is both of significant dignity and complete insignificance.
It’s truly up to the observer to determine the meaning of the observed, for the observer and the observed are the same thing, the observer being spawned and interconnected with the observed at all times.
@phoenixthepenguin, Your claim of the universe being around before there was anything to perceive it is just an extrapolation. You are correct with the idea that the observer is interconnected with the observed at all times. Though, I would like to expand on this to what my very basic knowledge on the matter will allow me to.
I imagine you are familiar with the concept of an organism-environment. That is, you cannot successfully describe an organism without also describing it’s environment. For example, you can’t describe the function of something walking without also describing the earth or surface the thing is walking on. Otherwise it is just a pair of legs dangling in space (the conventional western idea of the word space). For this reason there is a fundamental connection between the organism and it’s environment. This connection extends to, well.., everything.
If someone could elaborate on this matter it would be much appreciated :)