First of all, think of living things as self-contained models of the universe that include the reproduction of that model. For us, our inherent model is contained in our genes, and that model predicts an environment (where the environment includes the body of the living thing) that will result in reproduction of that model, which will in turn result in reproduction of that model, and so on. The accuracy of those predictions, and the degree to which the inherent model reflects the events that occur over the course of the organisms life, dictates success as a living thing.
Now imagine that the universe is itself a living organism and we are part of its “body”. Features of this universe are dictated by a universal model that itself has developed as a result of a natural selection of universes. Just as we develop conscious models, through science, that parallel the models inherent in our genes (as we figure out what genes do, and sometimes why), so might we develop conscious models that parallel the inherent models that underly a universe that has inherited those models from “universal ancestors”.
So consciousness, and our drive to understand and build a model of our universe is itself the mechanism for reproducing the universe. Now I know this is where it starts to sound all new agey and anthropocentric, but the idea here is that an understanding of the underlying model of our universe and the technology that comes with that may eventually result in the birth of the next generation of our universe. So the underlying model of our own universe itself predicts consciousness as the eventual means of reproduction of the universe, in the same way that our genes predict gametes and all of our biological apparatus as the eventual way to reproduce themselves.