Why Minto, Australia?
According to the Hindu Scriptures the 13th Jyothirlinga is the last icon of the current cycle of creation and destruction. As the last Jyothirlinga, members of the Mukti-Gupteshwar Mandir Society explained, it was necessary for the icon to be consecrated in the southern hemisphere.
According to the scriptures, Australia is at the 'mouth of the snake', a symbol of protection and an ornament of Lord Shiva. The Somanath temple enshrines the first Jyothirlinga. Outside the Somanath temple an arrow points along an unobstructed path of light towards the south pole, only compounding their view that the 13th Jyothirlinga should be consecrated in Australia. And so it now has been. The icon has since been housed in the consecrated prayer room in Sydney's suburb of Minto.
The 13th Jyothirlinga was a gift to the Australian people in 1999 by the late Majesty Maharajadhiraja Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, King of Nepal. Accompanying the icon were 7996 hyms arranged in 8 volumes. These hyms were composed specifically for this icon by the Chief Priest of the King of Nepal.
The 13th Jyothirlinga was consecrated on the 14th Febraury 1999 when various stars and planets aligned as described in the epic Ramayana, a phenomenon which occurs once every 100 years. Consecration of the icon was carried out under the instruction of the Jagadguru, the highest spiritual leader in India.