A little while and you will no longer see me, and again a little while later and you will see me, literally: a little [Greek: mikròs] and no more you'll see [Greek: theorèo] me and again a little and you'll see [Greek: orào] me. The Aramaic-Syriac text says qatin/qatino, which means “small, modest, narrow, light;” the Greek text says mikròs, which means “little” (see the Latin mìca, “crumble,” from an ancient Akkadian root mirqu, “shredded, diminished”). In short, something little or short.
Jesus said a little, a mikròn, as if to say, a very short time, an accountable time, in a second, in the twinking of an eye. Beyond every possible nuance the text underlines the fleetingness of time. A very short time will elapse between the seeing, the non-seeing, and the seeing-anew. Vision of Jesus will then never be interrupted, it cannot be interrupted, instead it will be characterized by a continuous communion of life with Him (John 14: 19). Jesus does not want and cannot remain far from us, not even for a moment, it has never happened and it will never happen.
The repetitive use of the the verb "to see" in verse 16 is interesting: A little while and you will no longer see me, and again a little while later and you will see me. The verb is translated into "see" in both cases, yet they are different: the first indeed is theorèo, the second is horào. In Greek there is a verb to indicate the simple seeing – theorèo, “see, observe, ascertain” – and a verb to indicate the perceptive seeing, horào, the understanding-seeing within. Horào, “perceive, feel, understand, acknowledge, consider, see, have a vision, ascertain, realize, recognize, reflect" is the verb of deep perception, of the wisdom and faith that lead to an inner vision. The Greek noun horàma means “sight, vision, apparition.” Horào thus embraces all the semantic fields of perception, of the inner feeling, of the looking with the whole self.
The first seeing, indicated by the verb theorèo, uses the visual apparatus as disconnected from the Spirit's sight, it reflects the way the disciples see the historical Jesus through a cloud full of doubts, betrayals, misunderstandings, demands and human expectations. According to the words of the Gospel, that is the way of seeing of those who are blind within, a sight through guesses, judgements, interpretations, a sight of separation, suspension, of a mind stiffenend from wounds and fear. The second seeing, indicated by the verb horào, uses instead the visual apparatus that is entiely connected to sight of trust and love, of humility and intellectual honesty; horào is the sight that will allow the disciples to see Jesus risen, transfigured, transformed. It is the sight which, sustained by love, grows into trust and total sharing in heartfelt harmony. It is the sight which will lead the way to a new way to live our life, God, love, waterfalls, wind, skin, relationships, bread, ourselves, sunsets, music, prayer, play, work, building, traveling.