First, I want to make it clear, I only speculate about the purpose of the universe. I don't in fact know what the purpose is or if there in fact is one, but I have as much right as anyone to use my intelligence to speculate or guess what that purpose is. Who knows, I might even be right, although I don't think there is a way to prove anyone is right, but it's an interesting exercise to think about what that purpose might be, and maybe being right is not all that important.
So here is my guess. The purpose of the universe is to see if it's possible to organize individuated life forms is such a way as to maximize collective and individual happiness. This might not even be possible. War and conflict seem to be the history of the human race. Would it even be possible for human cultures and societies to live in peace and abundance without conflict and war? I think it is possible, and, if so, that outcome may be why the universe was created. This presupposes that there was a Creator of the universe, and that Creator had a purpose in mind when He created the universe. It seems that an individuated universe, a universe that produces individuals whether animate or inanimate, would be the necessary baseline for this purpose to be carried out or not over time.
There are a number of reasons to believe that my speculated purpose is not really the case or could not really be the case. If the purpose of evolution is the survival of the fittest, this has nothing to do with creating a society which maximizes happiness. The happiest society might not be the fittest to survive society, and, therefore, my purpose conflicts with the purpose of evolution. But this might be explained away as follows. In the early days of life on earth, millions of years ago, evolution was directed by a survival of the fittest ethic. This was the situation due to the fact that no life forms had yet evolved with large enough brains to restrain predation. There was in essence anarchy among existing life forms. Great predators roamed the earth devouring everything in their path. After some cataclysmic events which caused the extinction of some of these predators, human beings evolved. One might ask 'why did predators evolve in the first place if the purpose of life is to end up with a society in which there was maximum happiness?'. Predators are only interested in providing happiness for themselves which is produced partly at least by preying on their victims.
Here I have a qualm with the current theory of evolution which assumes random genetic mutations followed by natural selection. I speculate that the course of evolution can be driven by the subconscious minds of the individuals involved. For instance, when humans split off from chimps some 6 million years ago because their pelvis tilted so that humans could walk upright better, I assume that the subconscious mind or minds of the chimps figured out that there was some advantages to walking upright. Of course, the same would have to be true for predators. Their subconscious minds could have had something to do with evolving sharper teeth and more powerful jaws. In the days before creatures with large enough brains to have some kind of organization of society, the law of the jungle or survival of the fittest would prevail. If several large brained species evolved contemporaneously, it would be hard to visualize how they would not be in conflict. However, once one of them had attained dominance as homo sapiens has today, it is hard to visualize how a smaller brained predator could ever dominate since humans have developed weapons that could seek out and destroy the dinosaurs, for example, or any other smaller brained predatory species.
So the problem becomes how can human beings get along without descending into conflict, war and predation upon each other. It is easy to imagine how this might work. Sharing of natural and man made resources could lead to the elimination of wars and conflicts over resources. Court systems can separate out from society the most egregious predators. Democratic voting can lead to equality in decision making which might eliminate conflicts over arbitrary decisions imposed by others. Cultural evolution could solve most of the problems and dilemmas humans face including organizing human society in a fair and just way that could tend to maximize happiness. At least at this point in history an argument could be made that the stage has been set for the final stage which would be to harmonize human society within itself and with the planet in general. Predators of other species no longer exist, and predation within the human species, although it still exists, has been circumscribed to a considerable extent. Biological evolution within the human species could lead to more empathetic and less selfish humans or cultural evolution could lead to further restraints on predatory behavior and more elegant social structures.
For whatever reason the survival of the fittest ethic did not lead to the dominance of earth's historic greatest predators whether reptilian or mammalian. What did happen was that a less fit being was allowed to evolve to the point that its large brain gave it dominance over all smaller brained creatures whether predatory or not. Humans at least have the chance to evolve more harmonious social structures which might lead to peace on earth and sharing of resources. Such a society might then represent the accomplishment of the purpose of the universe which might be living in a harmonious balance among all earth's creatures and resources. This process might well be occurring in other parts of the universe simultaneously and not just here on earth. In any case the problem of many identical life forms living harmoniously without major conflicts seems to be the major problem confronting us today.