"The universe must be watching out for me!"
Or, "The universe must have something in mind."
Obviously, they're attributing personal, godlike qualities to the cosmos—usually without really examining their presumptions.
(Thank you, Alan Watts, Allen Ginsberg, Timothy Leary, Paramahansa Yogananda, Steve Gaskin, Richard Alpert, etc.)
But it's worth asking: Does the universe really care about you?
Here's a thought experiment: Imagine you actually "slipped the surly bonds of earth" and ventured out into the benevolent universe, far from the atmosphere and gravity that we're all used to.
What would happen?
Your body would explode into billions of undetectable particles. And you'd be gone.
And the universe wouldn't bat an eye.
Even if it had one.
Here's the thing: The universe doesn't care about you.
By the way, most of us first heard those words about "slipping the surly bonds of earth" when Ronald Reagan uttered them after the Challenger space shuttle disaster--in a beautiful speech written by Peggy Noonan.
They came from a poem written by Canadian aviator John Gillespie Magee, Jr. Soon thereafter he was killed in a training flight with the RAF. That was December 1941.
He was nineteen.
Here's the whole poem:
High FlightOh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds, --and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of --Wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air...
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue
I've topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark or even eagle flew --
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.